Western Digital hard drives more prone to failure compared to rivals

Apparently, Seagate and Toshiba are more reliable than Western Digital

Mechanical hard drive manufacturers such as Western Digital, Seagate and Toshiba are well known for producing high-capacity drives that might compromise on performance but offer every bit of capacity in return for this limitation, when compared to solid state drives. However, while Western Digital might be a popular brand amongst PC enthusiasts and mainstream users, it appears that quality control is lacking in the firm’s business model, according to BackBlaze, a company that provides cloud-based backup solutions.

According to BackBlaze, the company has as studied how its data center’s hard drives have failed during the course of 12 months and has stated that Western Digital is culpable for more hard drive failures than any other brand on the planet. These important statistics will definitely be useful for consumers because Backblaze uses off-the-shelf hard drives for its data centers (the same products that regular consumers use).

The analysis carried out by the company states that during 2015, it used 56,224 HDDs organized in 1,249 storage pods, growing from 39,690 HDDs which it had at the start of year. These hard drives varied in capacity between 1TB to 8TB storage, and according to BackBlaze, it only used four hard drive manufacturers, which were HGST (formerly Hitachi Global Storage Technologies), Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital. The cloud backup solutions provider observed that hard drives tend to fail differently depending on their make, model, and capacity, but here is the interesting metric that the company manage to dot down.

Western Digital hard drives had an annual failure rate of nearly 7 percent. In comparison, Seagate was the more reliable firm with an annual failure rate of 1 percent, followed by Toshiba with nearly 3.5 percent. HGST proved to be the most reliable company out there, with an annual failure rate of just over 1 percent. It should be noted that the company’s data center used 4TB hard drives in most of its storage pods. For this category of hard drives, Toshiba drives failed the most, followed by Seagate, while Western Digital and HGST fared better.

After you have purchased a mechanical hard drive, it is imperative that you take the utmost of your storage product. Keep its temperature till a certain limit by employing an effective airflow system in your computer casing and perform regular maintenance tasks in order to prevent the speed of the drive entering a free fall.


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Muhd. Omer cannot control his love for tech, so he became an author at Techworm to report on the latest happenings in technology, and to educate others


  1. Umm read this a few times and seriously this is just trash. First of all there are several types of drives, Green which yes is trash, Reds, Black, and blue. All are built for different reasons and have different life spans. So if you are comparing WD Blues to Seagates NAS drives then yes you’ll get this kind of comparison. You would think a journalist would include details.


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