Adam_a

Pick The Right Drive For The Job — 24/7 NAS HDDs vs. Desktop HDDs

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Many end users oversimplify the problem by making the drive choice about cost only and many vendors have not provided additional information beyond the marketing lingo. They've talked about special firmware and alluded to "NAS tuning" in the drives, but technical details have been largely obfuscated. There's also a certain distrust amongst some consumers as to whether or not the NAS hard drive is really any better than the lower-cost eco-friendly drive category. To get past all of this we've worked with Seagate to go beyond the spec sheet to get to the crux of what makes a NAS drive special and why they're the only right answer to the question of what HDDs should live in a NAS.

Pick The Right Drive For The Job — 24/7 NAS HDDs vs. Desktop HDDs

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Thanks for the in depth coverage. It's too easy to gloss over the details but this article should do a good job of establishing the reality in a lot of people's minds. I just wish I'd thought of it. ;)

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Hah - really the NAS guys have been asking us to do this for ages due to the number of support calls and weird configs that fail that they have to deal with. Sadly, we also see lower-tier NAS vendors shipping with WD Greens, etc that aren't rated for the task. Hope it helps.

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I know this may sound silly to many IT experts reading this.

Nevertheless, whenever I am asked for a recommendation

from desktop users, I always remind them to divide

retail cost by warranty years.

More often than not, the 5-year warranties come out ahead

on that metric, when comparing cost per warranty year.

Also, on a very practical level, using raw probability as the metric,

any drive is more likely to fail in years 4 and 5 than it is

in years 1 thru 3, after "infant mortality" takes its predictable toll.

Samsung was very smart to offer a 10-year factory warranty

on certain models e.g. Samsung 850 Pro SSDs.

Do the arithmetic :)

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This article really told us very little. It could pass for advertising copy from Seagate. Did someone from Seagate also write it?

The hardware comparisons in the article are mostly between enterprise drives and the consumer drives. So you're showing readers that enterprise drives that cost 1.5x to 3x as much as their consumer counterparts are made better? I would certainly hope so. You'd have a real scoop if that weren't the case.

The real meat is the difference, if any, between desktop drives and this relatively new wave of drives marketed to consumers as "NAS" drives. You only reinforce (without saying so) the common belief that there are minimal physical differences between the desktop drives and consumer NAS drives. In fact, when talking about desktop drives and comparing them to the alternatives, the article seems to purposely blur the distinction between these consumer NAS drives and enterprise drives.

The other issue is that 24/7 usage in a typical home NAS environment is often _less_ stressful than desktop drives have traditionally been subject to. Users might store some movies and TV shows on the NAS, then the NAS streams them for a few hours a day. This is very low stress usage. Maybe you also use the NAS for nightly system backups, so another hour or so of use. If the drives in the NAS spin down when not in use, then they're most likely idle for 18-22 hours a day. Calling this a "24/7" environment is extremely misleading.

Edited by JJ Johnson

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My NAS never spins down, it's always doing something, but your usage may vary. The data is there from the NAS guys that confirms that desktop drives fail more often than NAS drives, client or enterprise. Thanks for your feedback though, glad you took the time to read and reply.

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This??

That said, Synology for instance, would be the first to tell you that a large number of their support calls deal with situations where desktop HDDs were used in their product, despite their best efforts at education on the topic.

Hardly what I'd call hard data. We do know that WD cripples their desktop drive firmware for use in RAID systems, where they're very likely to be dropped from a RAID array. Very popular drives, they alone could account for this difference. Desktop drives from other manufacturers aren't all similarly sabotaged.

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Hi, I want to get 2x 10tb drives for my Synology 218+

I’ve been reading about Ironwolf vs Skyhawk, they both made for 7/24 work. As I see Ironwolf has some features like vibration protection. Well Seagate says vibration begins when it’s 4+ drives. I’ve only 2 so I’m not worried about vibration. Read and write speeds almost same. It’s just Skyhawk’s stress test 41 degrees Celsius while ironwolf pro is just 34 celsius. I don’t know if that 7 Celsius makes difference in long shot.

But in other hand Skyhawk 10tb is 311$ while ironwolf pro is 476$ (in Turkey) should I go Surveillance drive instead of NAS drive?

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Both will be workable for a NAS setup and the Skyhawk is rated for constant use.

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