Posted by: on Nov 1, 2007 | No Comments

These “perpendicular” drives out today, basically the Seagate and Hitachi’s >= 750 GB, seem to be less than reliable. I swapped out my boot drives on my Quad Power Mac with two 1TB Hitachis, and put ’em in a RAID mirror to save myself the pain of doing backups. It took all of 1 day for problems to appear. I’ve RMA’d the drive, which had given me some issues before, but the lesson here is RAID mirrors are your friend. I’ve had similar odd behavior from a Seagate Barracuda 750 GB. These drives tend to run hot, and pressing them into any kind of major labor seems to wilt these precious little flowers. I’m a little annoyed that most manufactures now offer “Enterprise” class drives, supposedly giving you 24/7 reliability, which makes me wonder what the non-Enterprise drives lack. Apparently reliability. 950 GB of free space, 50% availability! Rock on.

Oh, and now that TiVo Series 3 and TiVo HD officially support eSATA drive expansions, I have one sage piece of advice that will save you a ton of money: if you build your own, absolutely purchase a drive rated for DVR use. The Seagate DB35 or Hitachi CinemaStar series. The run quite a bit more silent (good in the living room), but also produce less heat, and seek slower, which doesn’t thrash the head in 24/7 DVR use.