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I’m asking just in case, are there ESSENTIAL recommendations for a system disk ?

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Hello everyone,

I’m in a bit of a pinch, I’ve got a dying hard disk in my tower (you know, making the typical noises, there are random system slowdowns or hang-ups, there’s been a first reboot after a hang-up… the usual, after all these years :-| ), and, unfortunately, it’s the system disk, hosting windows XP and Mandriva. The first SATA disk I bought, sigh, a Samsung Barracuda 400 GB.

I try to see positive things, as seeing in this an opportunity to upgrade OSes growing old (how come Mandriva doesn’t allow an OS upgrade through RPM packages, they suck as much as Windows in this regard, the updates.) I guess I’ll install Windows Seven, it will be the first Windows OS I’ll buy :lol:

(Just a note, if I stop udpating Hentairules for two or three days, you’ll know why, right ? ^^ In such a case, it’s something I can update from any computer, check my twitter page)

But back to the main problem : replacing a hard drive, with in focus the fact it will be a SYSTEM disk. That means specific requirements :
– no special need to be hyper large
– fast for several operations over small files rather than fast on the paper when dealing with very big files
– silent
absolutely, definitely, totally RELIABLE
and LONG-LASTING, durability is better than a neglectible performance gain, for heaven’s sake

From what I could read, in such a case, it is recommended to go for a Caviar Green, even if the disks rotation is a bit slower (5k turns), the disks are more dense (hence a neglectible loss of performance), but that ensures less risks of a disk death. Am I right, oris there something so much better for reliable long-lasting (and, if possible, but that’s not the priority, fast) disk ?

Mini-update : SSD disks look promising, but I read on an influential place, in december 2009, that everything depended on the SSD disk’s controller, that it could be heaven or hell, and that the whole SSD disk market wasn’t “mature” enough to know what and who to trust… Right or wrong ? The best I heard was about Vertex with Sandforce, whatever it might be.
If there is an SSD model or brand you’d strongly believe to be reliable and worthy, please, I’m all ears !

Maybe, with these requirements, a certain class of disks is absolutely superior to all others ? I’ve been very long I informed myself about typical disks for system disks, so, well, I’l asking you guys !
Throw your comments if you think it can be helpful, thank you very much in advance :)

UPDATE : I opted to an SSD disk and continued the discussion in another post. To avoid confusion, I closed the comments, if you want to react, do it in the other post :)

Hello! This post is getting on years, so here's a friendly mention... If all the links are dead, you may try using
to grab the file you want. You can just pick the stuff you need, it's quick and easy :)

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Pretty much work with Western Digital in my shop with the Green, Blue and Black models. Should get a decent price for a 500GB Model these days. And the drives are very reliable, think I have only had to do 2 in the past 5 years and 1 of those down really to customer neglect.

Oh and the Seagate should have either a 3 or 5 year warranty with it if you fancy doing a return on it. (Direct to Seagate).


I would go with what he said.


jup, Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB WD1001FALS is the fastest on the market, and 5 jears garanty … 100 € in germany …

if you want a ssd, get yourself a 60GB OCZ Vertex 2


Hmmm, no need for a large amount of storage, optimized for smaller files, quiet and reliable? Have you considered a solid-state drive? If you don't mind paying a bit more, it sounds like an SSD would be the best choice, plus it would be a lot faster.


Taking into consideration your requirements, why not go with a small solid state hard drive. You wont have to deal with the "normal" wear and tear from a traditional drive. (speaking from an IT point of view)
Pricing is not too expensive in comparison to a regular disk drive, but it will still be more, in turn you would get a much longer life-span and access times for smaller files would be quicker than regular drives(due to the elimination of head seek time). In the end its up to you, I kept this as short and sweet as possible, but I could go techno-geek on you. (IT/Robotics engineer 8+yrs)



Also, forgot to add that they require less energy to run (due to no moving parts); they also generate dramatically less heat (model dependant0 than "disk" drives, and are resistant to drops(moderate)/vibration(unless being hit with a jackhammer attached to a bus.).



Oui comme le dit Raijin, un petit SSD pour le systeme, c'est niquel.
Si tu veux rester sur les DD traditionnel, Western Digital, ou Samsung c'est ok, par contre a eviter les Maxtor, c'est pas cher, mais question durée de vie c'est pas ca.

Voila ^^

Makkari Bromstom

Seagate is a very good brand, and the other good option is Wester digital (both tested on my Server and totally great performance)

but for god sake never, I mean NEVER buy a samsung those HDD are ver bad quality and die fast

I dont like the idea of SSD HD this tecnology isnt too great (yet) and have some issue with a constant writing/rewriting


Western Digitals' VelociRaptor


I have an SSD HD running in a netbook. I don't think SSD technology is too bad, and as the whole system is on and off switches, they shouldn't have much issue with writing/rewriting. I have had my Netbook for two years now, and works great!
Note: It's speed of access is much faster than a spinning disk.


WD Velociraptor, WD Black series or Seagate Barracuda XT for spinning disks. If you want a SSD probably something from Intel, Vertex 2 from OCZ, Force series from Corsair or C300 series from Crucial.


Totally agree with the Velociraptor/WD Black comment as the best in HDD and Vertex 2 for SSD. I'm using a Vertex as my system drive and store my video on a 1 TB WD Caviar Black and its a fast and reliable combo. Ignore the WD green and blue series as they have more problems than the black series. For pure speed, SSD is the way to go.


hi if its reliability and speed you want either go for a intel ssd more expensive but proven or WD RAID edition disk (yes they work also in a non raid environment) also a little more expensive but mine has a mtbf of 1.2 million hours . took that step after my main disk died on me too from 1 second to the other . at least if you dont take an intel make sure the SSD has the Trim function.


for those not believing the 1.2 million hours :)


There's no such thing as absolute, but if reliability is what you want and you're not afraid to shell out $$$ then perhaps buy an enterprise class HDD with good warranty. They are rated to fail 1 in every 1^17 bits instead of 1 in 1^16 or 1^15 like the regular HDDs. They're very expensive though, anywhere from 1.5 to 3x the price of a consumer level HDD.

As for SSDs, none of the recent (and by extension, good) drives, with the exception of Intel's, have been in use for long enough to establish a reliability name for themselves. That being said, OCZ's Vertex 2 drives are very fast and good value. If you want an in-depth SSD review, look here:
It's a little dated, since a lot has changed since Feb '10, but very detailed.

Also, I second everything that Raijin said earlier, and Good Luck.


Hi, I have purchase a Dell's laptop came with a Hitachi HDD.
I'm impressed that it works with me more tan 4 years and it's running more than 30000 hours.

You may consider a Hitachi 24/7 HDD if you're not planning to turn off your PC, except restart it. :)

By the way, Windows 7 is awesome, never encounter blue screen and for those not response program, just shut them down easily. :D


check out the new samsung F4 line:

It's one HDD that's super quiet and can say that can read and write as fast as SSD only when you have 2 in RAID 0 tho. Personlly I'd go with this or the F3 series from samsung for there 500GB drive:


There's a cheaper alternative: Some folks made an adapter card that turns a regular SDHC flash carda and "convert them" into a SSD
I think that would be the best choice if all you want is an OS-Only drive.
These things ARE slower than a 7200rpm sata drive, but they are dirt cheap and easily replaceable.


there may be a way to save your disks try spinrite from this may be a better option than chucking your disks.


I would highly recommend Intel SSD if you were to go the SSD path.
Very fast for processing small files and reliable.
Obviously you would have to pay quite abit more compared to the other brands.

SSD’s are quite reliable now these days so worth having a think about.


Stay away from Western Digital Hard Drive!!!!!!!!

You get what you pay for, they break easy because they’re cheap.In the computer lab I work in they purchased 30 computers with WD Hard Drives and half of them were defective and needed to be replaced.

Go safe with a Seagate HD. It cost slightly a bit more, but it’s worth it. I’ve had a 1.5 TB for 3 years and still works like new.

Also, always attach a HD cooler, it’ll help extend it’s life, even on your old one while you salvage it’s data.

I recommend you use Paragon Drive copy or Norton Ghost, it’ll save you the trouble of installing an OS, make perfect copy of the disk you’re currently using.


I think that Seagate is the way to go. I have 2 Seagate 500Gb IDE drives in my computer, and they have given me years good service, and show no sign of slowing down. They each came with a 5 year warranty, are fast and reliable. All my hard drives since I started with computers are Seagate, except for a Barracuda (which DID die on me)still work. I have computer HD’s that are over 10 years old that still work.

firsttimeposter :)

i recommend the Intel SSDs if you are willing to shell out the money.

as for hard disks, between Seagate and Western Digital are my favorites.

i have have heard drives failing for BOTH Seagate and WD so its pure luck if you get one that fails. go buy a lottery ticket if it fails!

the best "bang for your buck" are the current generation Seagate XT and WD Black series which perform similarly. its all personal preference and brand loyalty so get whichever is on sale :P

for speed thats a bit cheaper than a SSD the Velociraptor series by WD might interest you (as someone posted already)

if you are in Canada the company NCIX is a good, reasonably priced retailer of computer parts.


SSD Drives for an Operating System.. ONLY with SLC-Chips.. !
( OCZ – Vertex/2.. for an OS Partition, isn't a good Idee'r. And the Sandforce-Controller is only a company deal to "trick" the customer)
Iam sure you made already your choice for the right HDD desicion, by many useful reports listet above.

— OS-Drive 2x WD-Raptor 80GB as raid. ageing stll after ~30miles traveled by bike, ~700 by car :P —


Google has made an analysis of their hard drives since 2001. It is readable here

In short, if you want to have a last longing hard drive, it tells us :
– to make them work between 30 and 40 degrees (below 30 and beyond 40 gives negative results)
– to use them moderatly (low or high usage gives negative results)
– failures are correlated with drive models, manufacturers and vintages, therefore it’s quite difficult to recommend a manufacturer based on the fact that previous drives worked very well for years
– you can't use SMART functions as a predictive tool. Though they reflect the health drive, they lack of important other data

What you can do :
– make sure your computer box is very well ventilated
– buy lots of RAM : even if your programs don’t use that much, the remaining is used by the OS as cache (whether it is Linux or Windows since NT/XP), it will help lower the HD activity
– make sure to always have lots of free space : it keeps the fragmentation as low as possible lowering the need for the head to move
– use more than one disk : if well thought, it shares the load among the different drives

This applies to HD, not to SSD. SSD should be excellent choice as a system disk as long as you keep in mind that you need to move out every part of the system that needs frequent writing : logs, registry base, swap, user directories etc. With the technology used in SSD, write operations are physically aggressive, you should therefore avoid them in order to make your drive live longer.

Hope it helps make your choice ;-)


I'm running a Kingston SSD which had the best price to performance ratio when I purchased it 2 months ago. It also comes as a desktop bundle that includes mounting rails and hardware.

I immediately noticed a performance boost with the programs I installed on the SSD and I configured Windows 7 to put the pagefile on my Storage HDD.


wd-raptor series smooth running?
Indeed, i dont speak about that.. because every kid knows this. but there for are many, many solutions for noise reduction on the market.


SSDs, hmm SSDs on the Sandforce chip are not really reliable when it comes to heavly compressed files. The only real SSD chip on the market is the Marvell 88SS9174-BJP2 controller. It kicks ass each and every sinle day!
The Crucial C300 Series is just great. It features Sata3, but is also sata2 compatible. which means, if u upgrade your motherboard or buy a pci-e1x sata3 raid card, you will get even more performance cause the C300 series bashes the limits of Sata2.
It is availabe with 64, 128 and 256 GB and it is costly. bear in mind that more nands mean more performance. as a matter of fact, the 256 performs better then the 64 or 128 Gb Models. But even though the smaller ones are a bit slower they will definetly deliver enough speed for everything you could possibly do. Here is a link for a Review of the 128GB Model.

The reads are phenomenal O.o

I would choose the C300 Series myself but there are still other good SSDs on the market. Intel might release their new SSD lineup in dezember or in the early 2011, not sure. but until then, well the C300 Man ^^


for those swearing on one brand i had hd s from every brand over the last 20 years and none are absolutely reliable but raid disks are a little more secure first and 1 thing everyone forgets and it really helps to have a forwarning get a SMART surveillance software. ps samsung WD seagate all can break its the same as with the cars :) either youre lucky or not . but the raid editions ae tested for around 100 hours . Ah and another thing the caviar greens turn at 5400 to 7200 rpm depending on the load needed are the fastest of the eco drives but still slow compared to standard drives its a good secondary disk but due to personal experience (bought a Intel SSD 2 days later) its far too slow as main you get crazy with the respinning after 5 minutes of work without hd use. Heres the info about the rpm rates… .no im not into WD alone have 1 WD raid 1 +1 WD secondary +1 samsung +1 seagate and a INTEL ssd as main at the moment so im only giving personal experience away. and for the question who comes inevitably i have 7 tb in my pc at the moment .


btw SCSI is nice but i think it will be a little overpriced for our friend:) and all SCSI disk are raid versions what explains there higher reliability but you can get em for SATA without the need to also buy a SCSI controller


All I can say is NEVER, NEVER, NEVER buy a f***ing GREEN! Especially the newest ones. They are totally not reliable. Always go for a black, it's not that much expensive and the perfs and durability are better. (i have 2 black in my pc and 3 green in my bin)

I also find western digital weaker since the crysis, they're not as much exceptionnal as before…(even velociraptor begins to suck)

And for SSD, yes it is the future of storage, but it's way too soon to be bought. Like blue ray 3 years ago.


I think SSD are a bit expensive yet. About Samsung HD i don't have good experiences (a 256GB instant die from night to day). Now I have a Seagate Barracuda 500GB (7200.12) with no problem but if you buy a Seagate be careful to avoid old model which has some problems (it may "dissapear" on reboot):


> I would highly recommend Intel SSD if you were to go the SSD path.

All my Laptops run Intel X25-SSDs, one the 80gb, the other the 160gb.
My Desktop uses RAID for now, for capacity reasons. But i'm thinking about switching it, too.


I would choose either an Intel SSD or Sandforce based one for the main drive then a Western Digital RE4(enterprise class drive for reliability) for storage. Most importantly always keep an up-to-date backup of important files


I recommend Trancend, i've been using it for years. it has not given me trouble yet since i got it. n i'm a rugged user. Might wanna check it out.


i understand SSDs will die out faster than disks. As for disks, unless you are prepared to run RAID 0, you are always at the risk of sudden disk failure, regardless of the brand, type of disk and so on. It's a choice you have to make.


Oops, i think RAID 1 is the correct RAID type.



If you’re looking for a HDD that is to be used as a system disk, why not some cheap HDD?

All your data should, and I think, is already on a separate disk.

Keep ghosting now and then.

If you want reliability, buy few HDD and make them in RAID config.


Hurm, Western Digital have the highest average performance on the market. Sadly, some of them aren't built in oil, and tend to get noisy.

All recent Seagates are build in oil (and I mean they are literally swimming in oil, don't open them.) So I would recommend a 7.2 t/s Seagate for silence and long-lasting.
Don't forget as soon as you buy the hard drive to do a full scan with the Seagate tools to check every little details.

Otherwise, for better performance at the cost of some scratching noise, go for a 10.000t/s Western Digital.

Big files shouldn't be an issue for any of your HD as long as you defrag often. awesome tool, FREE, no tech skills required)
For thousands of small files, I would recommend going SSD, but I don't know how reliable they can be. Theoretically it's better, because majority of hard drives failures are from the reading head (or parts of it) breaking.


If you really fear HD failure, you can get 2 cheap Sygates, and make a RAID 1 (mirror type) If one disk fail, the second copy is always available. And you can replace the first one.
Costly solution since you actually need 2 HD for no performance gain.

Otherwise, you can use automatic programs to make backups every week on another drive.

But honestly, you should be fairly safe with a Sygate or a Western Digital. Just run a full disk scan the first day in case it took a bad hit during transport.


+1 to WD and seagate
SSD -1 due to less durability


Fiabilité totale= RAID 1
Rapidité maximum = SSD
Fiabilité totale + rapidité maximum = deux SSD en RAID 1, mais prix élevé !
(total reliability + high speed = two SSD in RAID 1, but huge price)

Les problèmes de contrôleurs de SSD sont réglés maintenant
Je te recommande l'achat en kiosque (une fois pour voir, puis tu t'abonneras ensuite probablement si tu es très branché hardware :) ) des deux revues françaises PC Update et Hardware magazine


w7 sux, keep wxp