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HDD or SSD?

Discussion in 'Computers, Hardware, and Operating Systems' started by G4COE, Jul 30, 2019.

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  1. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yup.

    I just bought, a few months ago, a 6TB RAID array - two physical HDDs. Comparing the prices it was an easy decision. Now if I were building up a new PC, then the OS and boot would definitely be on an SSD. But for large amounts of storage the price is still in favor of HDDs. And though the failure rate for SSD may be lower, it's far from zero so I'd still have wanted the redundancy of the RAID (I have it set up as a mirror set.)
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2019
  2. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The thing is, I've never had the data go bad on an HDD but I've had multiple HDDs over the years die a hardware death. Spinning platters just introduce several kinds of additional failure modes.

    All in all I still live by the maxim, "blessed are the pessimists, for they hath made backups." That's why ALL my data storage is on that external RAID drive.
     
  3. N5AVF

    N5AVF Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Got ya beat! :D

    I have a vintage 1989 MiniScribe 9380S 330MB (yes, MB..) SCSI drive in an old 486 clone box. SCSI controller board is a Future Domain TMC-1680. It still boots up and works, operating system on it is OS/2. The machine is now more of a collectors item and I keep it around for sentimental reasons. Can't be used for anything these days. It contains the Bulletin Board system I ran from 1990-1995. I took it "offline" in 1995 when it became apparent that this new-fangled thing called the internet was going to make the local BBS system obsolete..fast. Never bothered to re-purpose the machine.

    http://www.bitsavers.org/pdf/miniscribe/brochures/Miniscribe_Product_Line_1989.pdf

    Ugh. Now I feel old. :confused:

    I've not had a SSD fail - yet. Heard a few horror stories.. Had plenty of 2000's era spinners give up the ghost - there's a pile of 'em in my garage.
     
  4. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

    If you want fast, go with SSD.

    If you want lots of space, get a quality mechanical disk drive.

    I haven't had an SSD fail yet. I have had several mechanical drives fail. The thing about SSDs is that they haven't been popular very long, so there isn't as much longevity data available for them yet. That said, both types of drive have internal electronics, but the SSDs have simpler electronics, and they lack the mechanical components, so an SSD has fewer ways to fail. So long-term, the SSDs should be far more reliable.
     
  5. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    An SSD that isn't used much SHOULD indeed last way longer. If it's used more, well they do have a finite number of read/write cycles and I think the jury is still out on their longevity in practice. But like most computer hardware they are continuing to improve very quickly.
     
  6. W4EAE

    W4EAE Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    At home, we have three computers. All three have the OS (Ubuntu on one for my wife, Debian on two for me) running on 256GB SSDs. The home folders for each computer (user files, application settings) are hosted on a common networked RAID 1 device with two 6TB WD Red spinning disks. In addition, each of the OS drives backup up in full to the network drive. This works really well for us as things like document, music and video libraries can be the exact same across all devices--including the entertainment center. I have no idea if this would work in Windows. I seem to recall that you can only mount network drives at the 'f:/' level. You really need to mount them in folders for it to be seamless.

    All of that comes to the point: HDDs, SSDs, all will fail. And any single drive could fail ten minutes after your install it, or 20 years later. You cannot know with absolute certainty.

    So: If you have any anything that you cannot afford to loose (pictures, documents, programs, OSs), store them in more than one place. If any one of the SSDs or HDDs in my house failed today, it would mean no more than about 15 minutes of work.
     
  7. K5UNX

    K5UNX XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I try to use SSD's for my OS installs. It just makes the computer that much faster. What SSDs may lack in write cycles, HDDs have a lot of moving parts and those will fail someday also. So in my mind, it's a wash really.

    All the discussion around longevity of HDD vs SDD is really not the correct conversation to have. The problem is that HDDs and SDDs are going to fail. It's a matter of "when", not a matter of "if" they are going to fail . . All of them WILL FAIL at some point in time.

    The conversation you should be having is how you will recover when that happens. Most home computer users don't have a real backup & restore plan. They may copy a few files over to a thumb drive, might copy some stuff to a real USB drive, may even use a cloud service. Given that, if your computer was gone, house burned down, computer stolen, drive failure, could you put everything back and not lose anything????
     
  8. W4EAE

    W4EAE Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I had a conversation with my wife several years ago about what she absolutely could not loose under any circumstances. She settled on pictures. I decided it was my music collection. So both of those things are backed up to my work location.

    In a situation like a house fire, we will have much bigger problems to worry about than downloadable OSs and recordings of TV shows. For everything else, I thought it sufficient to simply protect against drive failure. (Running Debian Linux, restoring the OS is nothing compared to trying to restore Windows.)

    Anything that could take out both our house and my work simultaneously is, again, a bigger problem than our photos and music.
     
  9. G4COE

    G4COE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Bet a SSD can't do this.

    I always clone a back up each month, if you keep back ups you need never install the the operating system ever again plus you are never out of action but for a few minutes.

    Dave
     
    W6RZ and WC5P like this.
  10. W4EAE

    W4EAE Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have got to try that!:D
     

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