Hard Drive Recovery Group provides four new external hard drive troubleshooting tips and discusses cloud backup provider BackBlaze's latest hard drive reliability report in its latest blog posts. The company publishes blog posts twice weekly about hard drives, data recovery and data safety.
External hard drives, while not new, are one of the most popular forms of data storage available today. Lower prices continue to influence buyers of the drives, which tend to connect and power themselves using a USB 3.0 port. Although these devices are often advertised as "plug-and-play", they do often malfunction, the reason behind HDRG's blog post entitled, "4 Troubleshooting Tips For Your External Drive".
"External hard drives are fantastic for a lot of consumers simply because it gives them a safe, external place to backup their data," said Maureen Davies, spokesperson for Hard Drive Recovery Group. "Before external hard drives were available, backing up was often very 'Wild West', with far too many proprietary technologies available and too few inexpensive options. The USB port really made the external hard drive popular, which made a lot of backup solutions obsolete."
External hard drives tend to show their minor user related issues through two avenues - their USB port and the drive itself. While they are certainly very consistent overall, USB ports can be finicky with some drives, as they enable both the connection to the computer, as well as powering the device itself.
And while external hard drives are excellent as backup devices, to store photos or to carry files on the go, Hard Drive Recovery Group stresses that they should not be used as a consistent storage point for critical files.
"While the newer external hard drives are better, larger and faster than they have ever been, these drives remain dangerous for consistent use mainly because of their portability," said Davies. "If used as a backup device, the drive should be used solely for that, as a slight drop or accident which may occur during regular use can create immediate data loss."
In a second blog post entitled, "Cloud Backup Firm Report Shows The Importance Of Data Backup", Hard Drive Recovery Group discusses BackBlaze's most recent annual hard drive reliability report. The report notes that hard drive failures are up in their systems compared to the year before, but also notes that large drives are no more likely to fail than small drives.
The report notes that the highest failure rate of the hard drives the company uses was 2.6%. That model, an HGST 12TB disk, compares well to the company's most used drives, a Seagate 12TB (with a 2.22% failure rate) and a Seagate 4TB (1.96% failure rate). The overall failure average for all hard drives used in their comprehensive backup systems was 1.56%.
"This study is one of the most informative out there when it comes to reporting the consistency and failure rates of hard drives," said Davies. "What's more, it shows regular users that even industrial backup companies with millions of dollars worth of switches, expensive cooling setups and stationary drive racks experience hard drive failures."
Davies notes that although BackBlaze does have drives fail, it rarely affects the customers, as redundancy is the backbone of their business. And yet, it does clearly demonstrate that one out of fifty computers may experience some kind of normal use hard drive crash.
"While it is certainly possible that certain users experience less drive failures, the majority of users simply do not have the kind of setup conditions that a company like BackBlaze does," said Davies. "As a result, we tend to see that 'real world' failure rates are far higher, especially considering that laptop drives fail so often as a result of wear and tear. This is why Hard Drive Recovery Group always recommends keeping consistent backups of all important data."
SOURCE: Press Advantage [Link]
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