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I have a question... in some cases I have noticed that external HDD have died on me and/or date became corrupt or not accessible.
With building (S)ATA drives this has been zero to maybe once.

The external HDD was attached constantly and was not carried around.

Is my feeling true? Or did I have just happen to have some bad external HDD's?

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Posted

Don't think they are designed to be plugged in and working like an internal one would circuitry heats up, small casing with no ventilation, electronic parts die faster in heat.

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Posted

Most external HDDs are designed to power down while idle so leaving them plugged in 24/7 shouldn't be a problem. However, the enclosure of the external HDDs I've had usually go faulty (after several years) and I end up removing the drive which still works perfectly when connected internally.

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Aren't external drives most likely WD Green drives or something similar? Basically low power drives.

WD Greens are not designed to be written to constantly (or so it is claimed). So they tend to fail when put in RAID, where data is constantly written.

External drives can fail quicker due to inadequate cooling on enclosures. I have read posts saying that users should buy a better enclosure because the cheap ones that drives are put in do not provide good cooling.

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Posted (edited)

I've used several drives on serveral computers and servers, external drives too...
I find old laptops (~1998) tend to fail if the laptop fast if the laptop is moved around even only slightly.
Server hard drives have all mainly been fine, had 3 that have failed, one had only just arrived and failed upon starting up.
Had some internal desktop pc drives die, the most severe being a western union with a loud clicking noise that would fail to power up, sent it off for data recovery and they changed loads of parts - they couldnt get it back to life either.
I've used several internal drives as external using a little USB converter, never had problems with them. Got a western union 1TB external drive and a seagate 750GB external drive, I usually just power them up to store junk on them I'm not needing right away or get the junk off, and both are a few years old and running fine, one was connected to a server to read some large database files for just over 2 weeks constantly.

Obviously internal drives are better suited, external are made small for easier carrying/shipment, there's no cooling mechanisms in the 2 external drives I have, compare that to a 2001 external tape drive I have - inside is an internal drive connected to a scsi panel on the back, there's LOADS of 'spare/wasted' room inside the case and there's a fan on constantly blowing air out. If you're looking for a decent external system that you're going to have on 24/7 or the like then I'd look for an old external tape drive or casing from the early 2000s on ebay that has a fan built in.

EDIT: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Quantum-Ultrium-LTO-4-HH-External-Tape-Drive-TC-L42BX-TF5252-511-Data-Backup-/200830076203?pt=UK_Computing_LaptopAccessories_LaptopDrives&hash=item2ec267c52b have a look at that! Yes the price is dear, but forget that, that's actually the same case as the case my 20GB tape drive is in but mine has a white/grey colour scheme and different backplate, something like that is perfect for an external hard drive and has a DECENT power supply built into it that you'll probably find is of a much better quality than the cheap chinese ones, there's probably a few ones without tape drives knocking around on ebay. Edited by n_K

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