For the choice of a hard drive, reliability is often a criterion at least as critical as performance, consumption and noise emissions . Unfortunately, this is a difficult aspect to measure, and not found in any benchmark . So everyone is his opinion on a few bad personal experiences, the latter by non-representative nature (or so by chance). For an overview reliable reliability of hard drives, it is necessary to resort to statistics on large samples. Or just a company on Wednesday released a new report on nearly 40,000 hard drives. This company is BackBlaze an unlimited backup service online, which became known beyond its market by showing greater transparency regarding various aspects of its operation. BackBlaze has published open source specifications of successive versions of its servers Storage Pod homemade .

And this week, for the second consecutive year, BackBlaze has shared the annual failure rate of different hard drive models that it operates in its servers. What identify some trends.

The first lesson is that HGST – Hitachi Global Storage Technologies to the acquisition by Western Digital it three years ago – is by far the most reliable manufacturer of the study. The average annual failure rate is only slightly more than 1% and no model deviates a lot from this score. And four of the six models concerned are banal hard drives for desktop PCs, which are not specifically designed to work 24h / 24 and 7/7, as is the case in this study. The second lesson is that conversely Seagate is the worst and that a particular model seems to suffer from a serious design flaw. 43% of 3TB Barracuda 7200.14 (ST3000DM001 reference) of the sample are effectively broke down in 2014. BackBlaze has more than 1 000, so it’s probably not a problem in a series. The provider however, that the 4 and 5 TB models are in the standard. At Western Digital finally, there’s really no protruding given. It only states that it is again the model 3TB is the least reliable, as in the other two manufacturers. Unfortunately BackBlaze has very few hard drives of 2TB, then that is probably the most capacity fashionable for fixed PC.