Best and worst hard drives revealed

Backblaze, a leading online backup provider, has published its hard drive reliability statistics for Q1 2015, which reveal the reliability of different hard drive brands and models [See: Hard Drive Reliability Stats for Q1 2015].

The company bases its statistics on the drives which it uses to store customer data for its online backup business.

At end of Q1 2015, Backblaze had 44,252 hard drives spinning in its data centre used for online backups.

“If we subtract boot drives and drive models with less than 45 drives from that total, we get 42,749 hard drives remaining spread across 21 drive models,” said Backblaze.

The hard drive reliability statistics for these drives for Q1 2015 are detailed below.

Backblaze Hard Drive Failure Rates January 1 – March 31 2015
Name/Model Size Number of Drives Average Age in years Annual Failure Rate 95% Confidence Interval
Seagate Barracuda LP (ST31500542AS) 2TB 81 2.8 0.0% 0.0% – 33.9%
Toshiba MD04ABA-V Series (TOSHIBA MD04ABA400V) 4TB 45 0.1 0.0% 0.0% – 106.9
Toshiba MD04ABA-V Series (TOSHIBA MD04ABA500V) 5TB 45 0.1 0.0% 0.0% – 106.9%
HGST Megascale 4000.B (HGST HMS5C4040BLE640) 4TB 3,100 0.9 0.39% 0.2% – 1.10%
HGST Deskstar 5K3000 (HDS5C3030ALA630) 3TB 4,596 2.9 0.79% 0.4% – 1.5%
HGST Megascale 4000 (HGST HMS5C4040ALE640) 4TB 7,026 0.7 0.80% 0.4% – 1.4%
HGST Deskstar 5K4000 (HDS5C4040ALE630) 4TB 2,653 2.0 1.07% 0.4% – 2.2%
HGST Deskstar 7K2000 (HDS722020ALA330) 2TB 4,664 4.1 1.66% 1.0% – 2.6%
HGST Deskstar 7K3000 (HDS723030ALA640) 3TB 1,013 3.3 2.00% 0.6% – 4.7%
Seagate 6 TB SATA 3.5 (ST6000DX000) 6TB 495 0.1 2.41% 0.1% – 13.5%
Seagate Barracuda XT (ST33000651AS) 3TB 234 3.2 3.05% 0.4% – 11.0%
Seagate Desktop HDD.15 (ST4000DM000) 4TB 14,803 1.0 3.06% 2.5% – 3.7%
Seagate Barracuda XT (ST4000DX000) 4TB 175 1.9 4.62% 0.6% – 16.7%
Toshiba DT01ACA Series (TOSHIBA DT01ACA300) 3TB 50 2.0 5.1% 1.6% – 11.8%
Western Digital Red 6 TB (WDC WD60EFRX) 6TB 450 0.3 7.77% 3.4% – 15.3%
Western Digital 4 TB (WDC WD40EFRX) 4TB 45 1.0 9.01% 0.2% – 50.2%
Seagate Barracuda LP (ST31500541AS) 1.5TB 1,485 5.1 12.16% 8.9% – 16.3%
Western Digital Red 3 TB (WDC WD30EFRX) 3TB 1045 0.9 12.87% 8.5% – 18.7%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 (ST3000DM001) 3TB 485 2.4 26.65% 19.6% – 35.4%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 (ST31500341AS) 1.5TB 259 5.0 31.68% 20.1% – 47.5%
Note:  Some of the HGST drives listed were manufactured under their previous brand, Hitachi.

Cumulative hard drive failure rates

A more comprehensive hard drive reliability overview is provided by the company’s cumulative failure rates for drives stats, beginning with Q4 of 2013 and progressing quarterly up to the end of Q1 2015.

“The cumulative view can be used to see trends over time as well as spot anomalous periods requiring further review.”

Backblaze Hard Drive Failure Rates, Cumulative by Quarter
Name/Model Size 12/2013 03/2014 06/2014 09/2014 12/2014 03/2015
Toshiba MD04ABA-V Series (TOSHIBA MD04ABA400V) 4TB 0.00%
Toshiba MD04ABA-V Series (TOSHIBA MD04ABA500V) 5TB 0.00%
HGST Megascale 4000.B (HGST HMS5C4040BLE640) 4TB 20.29% 1.23% 0.59% 0.52% 0.48%
HGST Deskstar 5K3000 (HDS5C3030ALA630) 3TB 0.90% 0.85% 0.70% 0.73% 0.74% 0.74%
HGST Deskstar 7K2000 (HDS722020ALA330) 2TB 1.10% 1.08% 1.09% 1.03% 1.06% 1.15%
HGST Deskstar 5K4000 (HDS5C4040ALE630) 4TB 1.50% 1.33% 1.25% 1.06% 1.17% 1.16%
HGST Megascale 4000 (HGST HMS5C4040ALE640) 4TB 2.67% 1.90% 1.86% 1.43% 1.18%
Seagate Barracuda XT (ST4000DX000) 4TB 0.75% 0.56% 0.45% 1.12% 1.61%
Seagate 6 TB SATA 3.5 (ST6000DX000) 6TB 1.70%
HGST Deskstar 7K3000 (HDS723030ALA640) 3TB 0.90% 1.54% 1.46% 1.55% 1.81% 1.83%
Seagate Desktop HDD.15 (ST4000DM000) 4TB 3.83% 3.03% 2.73% 2.75% 2.83%
Toshiba DT01ACA Series (TOSHIBA DT01ACA300) 3TB 4.63% 3.48% 4.20% 4.81% 4.23%
Seagate Barracuda XT (ST33000651AS) 3TB 7.30% 6.53% 6.33% 6.08% 5.59% 5.27%
Western Digital Red 6 TB (WDC WD60EFRX) 6TB 13.75% 3.07% 6.64%
Western Digital Red 3 TB (WDC WD30EFRX) 3TB 3.20% 8.78% 9.07% 6.96% 6.49% 7.90%
Western Digital 4 TB (WDC WD40EFRX) 4TB 9.01%
Seagate Barracuda LP (ST32000542AS) 2TB 7.20% 8.03% 8.18% 9.96% 9.63% 9.93%
Seagate Barracuda LP (ST31500541AS) 1.5TB 9.90% 9.87% 9.67% 9.56% 9.93% 10.18%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 (ST31500341AS) 1.5TB 25.40% 22.27% 22.98% 23.02% 23.41% 24.12%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.14 (ST3000DM001) 3TB 9.80% 13.92% 17.65% 27.15% 28.31% 28.26%

Hard drive annual failure rate

Backblaze provided the following chart to show the annual failure rate of hard drives by brand for 2013 and 2014.

Hard drive annual failure rate
Hard drive annual failure rate

More hardware news

Oculus Rift final consumer model revealed, SA launch questions

AMD unveils new R9 Fury X graphics card

Massive 84″ Microsoft Surface Hub gets massive price

Latest news

Partner Content

Show comments

Recommended

Share this article
Best and worst hard drives revealed