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Need Inexpensive 8TB  3.5 inch drives

Posted on 2016-09-28
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Last Modified: 2016-09-28
I am looking for an 8TB  3.5 inch drive to use in an external CRU enclosure.  It will be a backup drive, and part of a backup rotation.  So it won't be getting the constant use that an internal drive in a CPU would have.

What major brand drives are reliable and inexpensive?


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Question by:computerlarry
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by:John Hurst
ID: 41820761
I find Western Digital best and Seagate OK.
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by:computerlarry
ID: 41820763
Can I order these by price?  Once again, as backup drives there won't be constant activity - just when the backup is running, and the backup, naturally, will be writing and comparing.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 41820765
Use WD, pick the drive you want from their site and then look at Amazon, Best Buy and so on for best price.
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by:computerlarry
ID: 41820769
Sorry - My point was can I choose a cheaper drive rather than an enterprise-level one that costs several times as much?
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by:John Hurst
ID: 41820773
8 TB drives are BIG drives and most consumers do not need such a thing. You will need an Enterprise drive for this kind of size.
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by:Daniel Checksum
ID: 41820774
Will any range of hard drives work?  Yes.  How durable will they be?  Who knows.  It's not absolutely necessary to go red, black, or purple(WD here), but they typically come with better warranties and are of a much sturdier build.  It also depends on how often you'll be backing up to this drive.  If you're swapping 2 drives back and forth, they'll die pretty quickly, i'd guess within 2 years, if you're swapping between 4-8 you'll probably get some decent longevity out of it.

My personal favorite is Seagate, I sold ALOT of WD so in turn, had a lot of failures.
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by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 332 total points
ID: 41820776
It will vary by person, but we have not had issues with WD, but by all means look at Seagate as well.

I had WD drives in my (newish) desktop and the second drive needed replacement and IBM sent a Seagate, so now I have one of each.
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by:Daniel Checksum
ID: 41820777
I wasn't saying WD was bad, but because I sold MORE of them, I saw more come back.  I mean I probably sold 70% WD vs 30% Seagate just due to stock availability.

Edit:  And we all know how our users treat their devices.  XD
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by:rindi
rindi earned 332 total points
ID: 41820804
What is a "CRU" enclosure?

If it is just something like a USB Disk dock, then you don't need any special disk. A Consumer disk will be more than sufficient. But 8TB disks are still quite new, so anything that size will be expensive, whether Consumer or enterprise. Can't you use several smaller disks instead?
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garycase earned 1004 total points
ID: 41820845
For drives that cost less than Enterprise grade drives, I'd recommend the following:

(a)  My favorite 8TB unit is the superb WD 8TB Red => these are helium-sealed drives that are VERY reliable and run quite cool.    They're essentially low-cost versions of the superb 8TB HGST UltraStar drives [ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822145969 ]    The Reds are just over $300:   http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA2F83Z94441&cm_re=8TB_WD_Red-_-22-235-063-_-Product

(b)  A less expensive alternative is the Seagate Archive drive ... these use SMR (shingled) technology, so they can have issues with a lot of random accesses; but Seagate's done an excellent job of mitigating the SMR disadvantages, so they'd work fine for the use you have in mind.    These are available for $250:  http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822178748&cm_re=Seagate_8TB_archive-_-22-178-748-_-Product

I would NOT recommend the following ... but if you're willing to take a chance on a 3rd party re-branded drive that's definitely inexpensive, Amazon has 8TB drives for $178:  https://www.amazon.com/Marshal-5400RPM-Internal-MAL38000SA-T54-Especia%EF%BD%8Cly/dp/B01EAHL6V0/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1475101742&sr=8-7&keywords=8TB+hard+drive
... There are no reviews on Amazon, but I've seen other reviews on Marshall units, and they are overwhelmingly negative.   The only reason I mention them is that you're likely to find these if you do a search for inexpensive 8TB drives, so I wanted to be sure you know that you'd definitely be taking a chance on these units.   If cost is a major consideration, I'd buy the Seagate archive drives;   if you can afford a bit more, I'd go with the WD Reds.
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by:garycase
ID: 41820852
Note, by the way, that the major manufacturers, for whatever reason, actually price their external units lower than the same drives are sold "bare".    If you don't have to put the drives in your own enclosures, you could get 8TB units from WD for $246 [ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822235061 ] or Seagate for $199 [ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822178951 ]

Note that the warranties on the external units are shorter than those on the bare drives [WD Reds are 3 years; the external unit is 2 years;  the Seagate archive drives are 3 years; the external unit is 1 year]
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by:Dr. Klahn
Dr. Klahn earned 332 total points
ID: 41820903
Side note:  Garycase touches on an interesting point.  Drive warranties are becoming shorter and shorter, and some bare drives come with a one year warranty now.  Since that is about how long it takes for serious problems to be exposed in the marketplace, any extension of the warranty is useful.

Note that the warranties on the external units are shorter than those on the bare drives [WD Reds are 3 years; the external unit is 2 years;  the Seagate archive drives are 3 years; the external unit is 1 year]

Many credit cards double a manufacturer's warranty for up to one additional year.  Reading my own card agreement, whether this applies to drives purchased for business use is not clear.

Flame on:  I haven't trusted recent drives since shingled recording went into use.  The idea of corrupting data on adjacent cylinders and hoping that the ECC will catch it -- to me, that's considerably less than good practice.  Flame off.
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Expert Comment

by:Tony Giangreco
ID: 41820989
Keep in mind, as you find cheaper drives, they will be slower and have a shorter warranty. 8 TB drives will be expensive. if you can lower the size to 6 or 4 TB, your selection opens up quickly while staying in the enterprise selection area.

Hope this helps!
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by:garycase
garycase earned 1004 total points
ID: 41820997
"... Flame on:  I haven't trusted recent drives since shingled recording went into use.  The idea of corrupting data on adjacent cylinders and hoping that the ECC will catch it -- to me, that's considerably less than good practice.  Flame off.  ..."  ==> FWIW the Seagate shingled drives have been VERY reliable; and Seagate has done an excellent job of mitigating the potential drawbacks of the shingled technology.    They incoporate a "persistent cache" area on the drive, where new data is written before it's moved to a shingled area ... and this keeps the performance of the drive very good as long as you don't fill the persistent cache area before it's migrated to the SMR area.

I know a lot of folks who have 6-15 of these in storage arrays (using LimeTech's UnRAID to manage them) ... and their results have been very good.    I wrote a fair amount about them in a thread on the UnRAID forum, which you can find here (not sure if you need to register to see this or not -- if the link doesn't work, let me know and I'll copy some of the relavant points here):   https://lime-technology.com/forum/index.php?topic=39526.0
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