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Life span of internal hdd if used infrequently


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#1 tantrik

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 10:38 AM

Processor: Intel Core i3-4130 CPU @ 3.40 GHz
Motherboard: Asus H81M-E
Memory: Transcend 2GB DIMM DDR3 1333 MHz (Channel 'B')
Undefined 2GB DIMM DDR3 1600 MHz (Channel 'A')
OS: Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64 bit

Dear friends,

I am planning to buy 2 hard disks: one 250 GB WD and one 320 GB Seagate. The 250 GB WD hdd will have windows 7 OS installed and the 320 GB Seagate will be for backup only. I will be using the 320 GB hdd only to copy, paste and store files from the 250 GB hdd in case the 250 GB hdd crashes even though the 320 GB hdd might first crash out of rare possibility.

Now I have two options: (i) install both the hard disks inside the cpu and (ii) install only the 250 GB hdd in the cpu and use the 320 GB hdd as an external hdd with an enclosure. I want to decrease the chance of 320 GB hdd failure within a short duration of time and make it work as long as as possible. Which option will reduce the chance of the 320 GB hdd failure in a short time?

Few years back I used only a 160 GB seagate internal hdd which lasted for nearly 3 years and 8 months. If I use the 320 GB hdd internally only for backup (no OS installed, no heavy use etc) will it last longer? Does an internal hdd (for backup only) spin (i.e work) all the time like the one with OS intalled since it is connected with the motherboard and power supply and thereby reduce its life span? Does it spin only when I enter into the hdd for copying and pasting files? Which option will be the best for my requirements?

Thanks in advance.



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#2 hamluis

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 10:51 AM

Any hard drive...may fail ata ny time...people receive shipped hard drives which are DOA.

 

On the other end...I have hard drives installed in my system...which have lasted 10-11 years and the utility I use to monitor such reflects continued extended use of these drives.

 

Boot failures...are not necesarily the result of failing drives...a system is composed of various components and just about any/all of those components may result in boot failures. 

 

Additionally...boot failures can result from install software and/or malware.

 

The only measure of defense that can be taken regarding all/any of the above circumstances...is to routinely back up and, ensure that said backups work properly...and store them in multiple places where you can access them, when the need arises.

 

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#3 mikey11

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 10:57 AM

you are asking the impossible, no way to predict

 

i have seen hard drives fail after two weeks......i have also seen them last 15-20 years,

 

on a side note.....i never use an internal drive for backups, i always use an external drive, and only connect it when i plan on doing a backup


Edited by mikey11, 12 December 2017 - 10:59 AM.


#4 RolandJS

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 11:22 AM

+1 on mikey11's backup idea!   I have been doing likewise for years.


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#5 mightywiz

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:10 PM

you have 2 motors in a HDD, one to spin the disc and one to move the heads.  at any time a winding or coils (windings or coils are used to create the magnetic field to spin the platter, move the heads, & the heads itself are windings) could go bad or a motor driver IC can give up. and then the drive is done, game over.

 

moving parts in a computer are the most common for failures.  fans, cd/dvd's, & HDD. 

 

I have 15+yr old HDD drives running to this day with out issues and I've also had drive die within a couple months being brand new.   you just can't ever tell.

 

RAID setup is your best bet that way if a drive fails in your array you can replace the bad one and continue on, unless all drive in your array fail at the same time.  then I hope you were also doing an offsite backup (cloud or external drive).

 

redundancy is not a bad thing when it come to data backup!   here at my off we have multiple drive raid systems setup up so we could have up to 3 drives fail at one time and still be ok.  even if all 4 drives fail we still do a nightly backup to to a NAS box (we actually have 2 and we alternate boxes every night so we have a good backup at all time and each NAS box hold 6 days worth of backup's.) then we also do a cloud backup that just appends an existing backup nightly.

 

but this is needed in our business situation that we are running.



#6 MadmanRB

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:14 PM

Seems like very low space there, if you are spending over $30 for these drives you are way overspending as 1TB drives can be found for $50

Heck even older refurbished 500GB drives can be found for $25

 

Unless this is a car boot sale i think you are wasting your money

If thse are being offered forf $5 a pop on ebay thats fine but you can score large capacity for real cheap these days.


Edited by MadmanRB, 12 December 2017 - 12:18 PM.

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#7 britechguy

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:26 PM

Second on MadmanRB's observation.  I just bought a 1TB SSHD for $44.99 last month.

 

Although I have never used an internal drive as a backup drive I see no reason why it doesn't make sense, particularly for a desktop computer.  If you're taking your backups via cloning of the original disc this would allow you to reboot the system in the event of the original hard drive failing simply by changing the primary boot device to be the "secondary" or by pulling the dead one out and plugging the secondary in using the connections for the former primary.

 

Given that I use laptops almost exclusively my backup drive is external of necessity.  But since I have multiple machines to back up it is better that way, anyway.

 

If you have a situation where it is critical that your backup be kept somewhere that it would not be destroyed in the event of fire/flood/etc. at the site the backup is being taken then you need some sort of external backup device whether it be cloud based or a HDD that can be physically removed from the site and stored elsewhere.


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#8 OldPhil

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:31 PM

My bone on this pile, consider SSD's they are IMO are more reliable, no moving parts, consume less power and make less heat.  Will they outlast an HD, mechanically no question.  Take the time to do the research, there are quite a few real life tests out there.


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#9 mikey11

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:32 PM

 

 

Although I have never used an internal drive as a backup drive I see no reason why it doesn't make sense, particularly for a desktop computer.

 

 

ransom viruses will infect any drive connected to the computer....that is the main reason i do not keep my backup drive connected all the time



#10 MadmanRB

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 12:33 PM

My bone on this pile, consider SSD's they are IMO are more reliable, no moving parts, consume less power and make less heat.  Will they outlast an HD, mechanically no question.  Take the time to do the research, there are quite a few real life tests out there.

 

 

If space is a concern though a standard hard drive is still cheaper.

 

A 1TB SSD is at least 4 times the price of a standard 1TB HDD


Edited by MadmanRB, 12 December 2017 - 12:38 PM.

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#11 OldPhil

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 03:29 PM

 

My bone on this pile, consider SSD's they are IMO are more reliable, no moving parts, consume less power and make less heat.  Will they outlast an HD, mechanically no question.  Take the time to do the research, there are quite a few real life tests out there.

 

 

If space is a concern though a standard hard drive is still cheaper.

 

A 1TB SSD is at least 4 times the price of a standard 1TB HDD

 

 

I agree with your assessment, but in his case he is going with much smaller capacities. SSD prices are not to bad and seem to be dropping daily.  I would use an SSD for the system and a spinner for storage, very hard to beat an SSD for the system.  Can not beat the speed, cuts time for all functions especially virus scans.

On another note he would be wise to go with an enclosure that can be simply switched off, I use a Roswill RX-358.  I leave it hooked up and just switch it on when needed keeping my data safe from bugs etc.

 

I just pulled a seven year Intel 120 SSD used and abused for many years, it out lived its five year warranty by two years.  I doubt any spinners have a five year.

 

Phil


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#12 tantrik

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Posted 14 December 2017 - 12:48 PM

Thanks everyone for your suggestions. Really appreciate it.






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