Recently, Western Digital (WD) expanded its Red Pro NAS hard disk drive (HDD) lineup with the launch of the 20TB Red Pro model. While high capacity drives like these are really great for network-attached storage (NAS) devices, one metric that seems to be a big problem for these high capacity drive models is the low yearly endurance ratings, also called workload rate.
First noticed by ServeTheHome (STH), both the new Red Pro 20TB and the Seagate IronWolf Pro 20TB have just 300TB of yearly endurance rating. To put this into context, over the five-year warranty period for these drives, that total endurance only reaches 1500TBW of data reads and writes.
So if a user was a heavy data swapper with lots of reads and writes, the 20TB and 18TB models would be running close to their workload capacities in no time. Quick math shows that by the 75th time, the 20TB models would have exhausted their rated endurance values. The figures are especially disappointing as these models have been labeled as "Pro" storage drives.
Toshiba is also not far behind. In fact, it appears to be ahead of WD and Seagate (in a negative way) at least when considering the company's N300 series NAS drives. The N300 HDDs are rated at just 180TB/year workload factor. Toshiba even touts this rating as "up to 3 times more than convenient desktop hard drives".
The drives come with a three year warranty and so over this period, the total endurance amounts to only 540TBW. This means the flagship 18TB N300 can on paper only perform 30 read/write instances.