The most reliable hard drives in the world

Cloud backup solutions provider Backblaze has released its hard drive reliability statistics for 2018.

The company compared active hard drives used in its operations – from Seagate, Western Digital, Toshiba, and HGST – for the report.

Reliability was measured as an annualised failure rate, calculated using the number of drive failures relative to the number of active drive days.

Backblaze then recorded the failure rates of its hard drives from 1 January to 31 December 2018, along with the annualised failure rate.

The backup provider had 106,919 spinning drives as of 31 December 2019, and added a number of models to its archive throughout the year.

“In 2018 the big trend was hard drive migration: replacing lower-density 2TB, 3TB, and 4TB drives, with 8, 10, 12, and in Q4, 14 terabyte drives,” Backblaze said.

Over the course of the year, Backblaze increased its total storage from around 500 petabytes to over 750 petabytes.

The most reliable hard drives for 2018, as well as their lifetime failure rates from 20 April 2013 to 31 December 2018, are listed below.


2018 Failure Rates

Model Drive Count Drive Days Drive Failures Failure Rate
4TB Hard Drives
HGST HMS5C4040BLE640 14,550 5,435,566 54 0.36%
HGST HMS5C4040ALE640 4,704 1,801,804 24 0.49%
Toshiba MD04ABA400V 145 52,850 1 0.69%
HGST HDS5C4040ALE630 50 23,069 1 1.58%
Seagate ST4000DM000 23,236 9,961,154 581 2.13%
5TB Hard Drives
Toshiba MD04ABA500V 45 16,335 0 0.00%
6TB Hard Drives
Seagate ST6000DX000 1,524 632,412 17 0.98%
WD WD60EFRX 383 152,703 9 2.15%
8TB Hard Drives
HGST HUH728080ALE600 1,045 373,238 7 0.68%
Seagate ST8000NM0055 14,383 5,224,893 126 0.88%
Seagate ST8000DM002 9,874 3,589,822 92 0.94%
10TB Hard Drives
Seagate ST10000NM0086 1,210 442,260 4 0.33%
12TB Hard Drives
HGST HUH721212ALN604 1,278 71,079 1 0.51%
Seagate ST12000NM0007 31,146 7,768,206 296 1.39%
14TB Hard Drives
Toshiba MG07ACA14TA 1,205 108,536 9 3.03%

Lifetime Failure Rates – 2013 to 2018

Model Max Drive Count Failure Rate
4TB Hard Drives
HGST HMS5C4040BLE640 16,168 0.46%
HGST HMS5C4040ALE640 8,570 0.52%
HGST HDS5C4040ALE630 2,706 0.77%
Toshiba MD04ABA400V 146 0.94%
Seagate ST4000DM000 34,744 2.77%
5TB Hard Drives
Toshiba MD04ABA500V 45 1.16%
6TB Hard Drives
Seagate ST6000DX000 1,891 1.07%
WD WD60EFRX 458 3.96%
8TB Hard Drives
Seagate ST8000NM0055 14,396 0.98%
HGST HUH728080ALE600 1,045 0.78%
Seagate ST8000DM002 9,891 1.00%
10TB Hard Drives
Seagate ST10000NM0086 1,220 0.45%
12TB Hard Drives
HGST HUH721212ALN604 1,278 0.51%
Seagate ST12000NM0007 31,146 1.39%
14TB Hard Drives
Toshiba MG07ACA14TA 1,205 3.03%

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The most reliable hard drives in the world