Enterprise hard disks are faster and use more power, but are they more reliable?
Backblaze, the low-cost cloud backup and storage provider, has published its drive reliability numbers for the first quarter of 2017.
Over most of its life, Backblaze’s focus on high density and low cost has seen the company use consumer-oriented hard drive models for its storage service, applying replication and Reed-Solomon encoding to protect against individual disks failing. This has given useful insight into the longevity of a range of consumer hard disk models, albeit under conditions that are probably a bit more hostile than most of us have to contend with, thanks to a mix of vibration and thermal environment.
But the company recently scored a deal on 8TB Seagate enterprise disks, buying 2,459 of them. The disks have been deployed over the first quarter. It’s too soon to make any inferences about reliability, as even the oldest disks have only been in production for a couple of months, but the company has noticed a few differences immediately.