A study by Backblaze found that the average lifespan of hard disk drives (HDDs) is shorter than expected, with an average age of 2 years and 6 months. The study also showed that smaller capacity drives last longer before failing.
If you keep important data on the hard drive, this study may concern you. According to the study Powered by Backblaze, the average lifespan of hard drives is shorter than expected, with an average failure occurring after 2 years and 6 months. This underscores the importance of regularly backing up your data to ensure the safety of your valuable information.
241,000 hard drives and SSDs for 2.8 million TB of storage
Cloud storage company Backblaze conducted a hard drive (HDD) lifespan study based on a large sample. Backblaze uses 241,000 hard drives and SSDs, making it possible to keep a large sample on hand, which includes 30 models from four manufacturers, representing nearly 2.8 million TB of storage.
Looking at 176,155 failed hard drives, the average age of failure was 2 years and 6 months. These results are consistent with these Secure data recoveryAlthough the sample used by the latter firm was small.
Backplace analyzed all failed hard drives with data such as date of failure, model, serial number, capacity and smart values to get these results. The study covered 72 different models of hard drives.
Looking at the average age of failure by model, Seagate’s 12TB hard drive, sweetly named ST12000NM0007, stands out with an average of 2,023 failures at 1 year and 6 months. Seagate’s 4TB hard drive, named ST4000DM000, was the single model with the most failures, averaging 5,249 failures over 3 years and 3 months.
The study also showed that smaller capacity drives last longer before failing. However, Backblaze clarifies that most large-capacity hard drives are always in use, which may affect results.
Since April 2013, the average annual default rate (AFR) has been 1.4%. The hard drive model with the lowest AFR (0.28%) is the 16TB WUH721816ALE6L4 from Western Digital Corporation (WDC), while the model with the highest AFR (2.57%) is the 4TB ST4000DM000 To from Seagate.
Although lagging far behind HDDs in terms of terabytes, the reliability of the company’s SSDs becomes more apparent in comparison. Nevertheless, with an AFR of 0.98% in 2022, 1.05% in 2021, SSDs are generally more reliable than traditional hard drives.
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