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Conclusion: All Hard Drives are the Same.
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milhous
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Jun 19, 2006, 11:49 PM
 
With my recent misfortune dealing with Seagate warranty support, I've come to the conclusion that in the end, picking and choosing a hard drive is like playing russian roulette--some work fine, while others don't. To me, it doesn't even seem to matter anymore what brand of hard drive you get. Each brand has their ups and downs, pros and cons and it's only by chance that you'll figure out if you've got something decent or if it's peace of shite. One may just have better luck picking a hard disk at random.

A little over a month ago, the iBook told me that I had a S.M.A.R.T failure with my 120GB Seagate internal drive and that it was recommended that I perform an immediate backup of everything. Ok, so whip out an External firewire disk drive and run SuperDuper. Great, done. The disc was also making weird noises for several weeks prior to the failure so I knew that the disc was headed for meltdown.

Then to my amazement, I find out that Seagate will not perform advanced exchange cross-shipment without paying a $25 fee--unacceptable. So i take the iBook apart, pull the drive, and ship it to them. I decide to leave the iBook partially aseembled as that will make installing the new drive easy and decide to just boot off my Firewire backup.

Days and weeks go by and Seagate's outsourced warranty support keeps giving me the same answer: this model drive is out of stock and we have no idea when we're going to get more in. Unacceptable.

So last week I decided to escalate the call to a supervisor since I was tired of hearing the same old broken record response. She's reviewing my case, and I tell her that this is completely unacceptable and that it's very hard to comprehend how a commodity item such as a hard drive can be out of stock for so long. There's nothing special about this hard drive. She's apologetic and asks if she can send a substiute model for what I had. I say sure, give me a higher capacity hard disk (like the 160GB model). She puts me on hold as she looks up what's available in her inventory system.

She gets back to me and tells me that she'll have to call me back tomorrow as her inventory system is down and is also unable to contact the inventory department. I said fine, but you better promise to call me back as she told me there was no direct way of contacting her but to instead call back and ask to speak to her, named "Hart" (sp).

So the next day she calls me back (and was actually suprised that she did) and told me that she spoke with inventory and told her that the drives would be coming in next week (where have I heard this before?!) and that in the meantime she could send me a 100GB model that I could use. I told her it wasn't worth the hassle because replacing a drive in an iBook G4 is a P.I.T.A. which would mean i'd have to disassemble and reassemble it twice. She said that was fine and told me that she'd call me sometime this week to keep me updated as to what's going on. She also offered to overnight the drive rather than to send it Ground.

So I'm hoping that I'll finally get a replacement sometime this week because it would sure be nice to know what's it's like to have a functional, PORTABLE laptop again.

Seagate toutes their 5-year warranty on their drives, but what's the point in having a long warranty when they can't even honor it within a reasonable time.

And since their acquisition of Maxtor, who knows where quality's going to be headed. Sounds like another IBM Deskstar (DEATHstar) story to me.
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vmarks
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Jun 19, 2006, 11:55 PM
 
IBM drives became hitachi drives.

Hitachi and IBM have traditionally had quick warranty service.

I just had a 60gb hitachi fail after about a year. They've already sent the replacement.

the $25 fee to cross-ship is pretty common, but I think I would have raised even more noise if I were you, had paid that, and still didn't get a drive.

Just keep escalating.
     
voodoo
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Jun 20, 2006, 04:58 AM
 
Asides from drives in two iPods, never have I had a hard drive bail on me. I've had iBooks since 2002 and nothing. I guess luck is with me, because the poor things have been dragged by me all over Europe, been dropped, had soft drinks spilled all over them and various other hazards. Always they've just.. worked. Except the trackpad on the older iBook did kick the bucket. The rest worked just fine.
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©öñFü$íóÑ
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Jun 20, 2006, 05:40 AM
 
for my PC, i bought an internal Western Digital 80 GB HDD back in 2004/2005. Hasn't bailed on me yet. Solid performance too, on FireWire.

The only hard drive that bailed on me is the one in my Power Mac 6100. It had an IBM-brand 350 MB HDD. It served me loyally for 7 years since 1995. But afterwards, it just completely died..... files would be corrupted every time i booted/rebooted and the reader head always gave a scratching/screeching sound every now and then; i assumed that the reader has actually scraped into and scratched the surface of the platter(s) of the disk.

At that point i decided to get a replacement drive. And in 2004, i went to a Mac repair shop and they sold me a Quantum Atlas 4.5 GB which they pulled from one of their old SCSI machines. Flawless performance to this day and still holding it's own!

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euphras
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Jun 20, 2006, 05:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by ©öñFü$íóÑ
for my PC, i bought an internal Western Digital 80 GB HDD back in 2004/2005. Hasn't bailed on me yet. Solid performance too, on FireWire.

The only hard drive that bailed on me is the one in my Power Mac 6100. It had an IBM-brand 350 MB HDD. It served me loyally for 7 years since 1995. But afterwards, it just completely died..... files would be corrupted every time i booted/rebooted and the reader head always gave a scratching/screeching sound every now and then; i assumed that the reader has actually scraped into and scratched the surface of the platter(s) of the disk.

At that point i decided to get a replacement drive. And in 2004, i went to a Mac repair shop and they sold me a Quantum Atlas 4.5 GB which they pulled from one of their old SCSI machines. Flawless performance to this day and still holding it's own!
The IBM hdd on my 667 DVI Ti died 3 years after purchase, but SCSI drives never failed. I currently have two IBM SCSI Ultrastars 18 Gig installed in my 6100 PPC and they´re running flawlessly (i still think, HDDs that are meant to run 24/7 have better tolerances than the notebook/desktop ones).


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Oisín
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Jun 20, 2006, 06:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by milhous
Seagate toutes their 5-year warranty on their drives, but what's the point in having a long warranty when they can't even honor it within a reasonable time.
Oh, I’m sorry—were you not aware that “five-year warranty” means it will take five years to honour the warranty?
     
Socially Awkward Solo
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Jun 20, 2006, 09:22 AM
 
I don't see what was so wrong about your customer service.

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olePigeon
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Jun 20, 2006, 10:39 AM
 
Originally Posted by euphras
The IBM hdd on my 667 DVI Ti died 3 years after purchase, but SCSI drives never failed. I currently have two IBM SCSI Ultrastars 18 Gig installed in my 6100 PPC and they´re running flawlessly (i still think, HDDs that are meant to run 24/7 have better tolerances than the notebook/desktop ones).
I never understood that, maybe it's placebo, but I've never had a SCSI drive fail on me. I still have my 80MB SCSI Drive in my ColorClassic. Runs like a champ. I have a few full height Ultra2 SCSI drives from 1994 that are still working perfectly.

I miss SCSI performance, but I don't miss the price. Only bad thing about them. There is a mobile Ultra3 SCSI connector now for laptop HDDs, though. However, I can't think of a single laptop that can use them (must be one somewhere. I'm guessing some special industrial type laptop.)

Speaking of which, why aren't there 15,000 and 22,000 RPM SATA drives? They seem to be stuck at 7,200 and 10,000 RPMs.
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SpaceMonkey
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Jun 20, 2006, 01:01 PM
 
I never understood why Seagate is the only manufacturer to have a 5 year warranty. It seems like it wouldn't affect costs very much--how many people really return 5 year old hard drives on warranty? Just buy a new one with 8 times the storage at half the original price.

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©öñFü$íóÑ
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Jun 20, 2006, 01:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon
why aren't there 15,000 and 22,000 RPM SATA drives? They seem to be stuck at 7,200 and 10,000 RPMs.
Yeah... and for that matter, you'd think there'd be -AT LEAST- 10,000 RPM drives for us old -Ultra ATA- users. Nope.

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ghporter
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Jun 20, 2006, 08:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon
Speaking of which, why aren't there 15,000 and 22,000 RPM SATA drives? They seem to be stuck at 7,200 and 10,000 RPMs.
It seems to be a matter of physical limitations. How do you keep stable a platter spinning that damned fast? And what is the angular speed of the outer rim of the platter when it's going at 15kRMP? Freaking FAST, that's what-possibly supersonic. Which means it's going through a shockwave the whole time it's turning.

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JoshuaZ
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Jun 21, 2006, 01:30 AM
 
Had the hard drive on my 12in Powerbook go out after just over a year of use. Good old Apple replaced it in no time flat. Luckily I had backed everything up a week beforehand.

Besides that all my hard drives I've ever bought have worked under constant usage for quite a few years.
     
Oneota
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Jun 21, 2006, 06:28 AM
 
I had a series of Maxtor drives fail in my Gigabit G4/400 during college. I kept sending them in for RMA, and they just kept failing. That's why I'll never by Maxtor again.
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Socially Awkward Solo
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Jun 21, 2006, 08:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Oneota
I had a series of Maxtor drives fail in my Gigabit G4/400 during college. I kept sending them in for RMA, and they just kept failing. That's why I'll never by Maxtor again.
Ya same with me. Out of my 5 maxtors 3 of them failed within a year.

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tooki
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Jun 21, 2006, 10:01 AM
 
I've had several Maxtor and Seagate drives and none has failed me. In fact, the only hard disk failure I've ever had was with the TravelStar 80GB 4200RPM drive my AlBook shipped with. It started developing errors, and Apple replaced it before it died completely, so I did not lose any data.

That said, I know my luck will not last forever, so I now back up regularly.

tooki
     
Gossamer
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Jun 21, 2006, 10:08 AM
 
Somebody correct me if my math is wrong, but this is what I got:
Assuming a 1.75" platter radius (3.5" diameter):

7200RPM=174mph at the edge of the plate

10,000RPM=243mph at the edge

22,000RPM=540mph

So yeah, it'd be fast.
     
olePigeon
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Jun 21, 2006, 11:01 AM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter
It seems to be a matter of physical limitations. How do you keep stable a platter spinning that damned fast? And what is the angular speed of the outer rim of the platter when it's going at 15kRMP? Freaking FAST, that's what-possibly supersonic. Which means it's going through a shockwave the whole time it's turning.
SCSI drives have had thsoe for years. I'm guessing maybe that's partially why they're a lot more expensive? Sturdier build to handle high RPMs, I would guess.
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euphras
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Jun 21, 2006, 01:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter
It seems to be a matter of physical limitations. How do you keep stable a platter spinning that damned fast? And what is the angular speed of the outer rim of the platter when it's going at 15kRMP? Freaking FAST, that's what-possibly supersonic. Which means it's going through a shockwave the whole time it's turning.
Well those HDDs do exist. And in reply to olePigeons question: They´re simply too loud to fit inside a desktop, i guess. My two rotate at 10 000 rpm and it sounds like a jet engine when they spin up


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Jun 21, 2006, 02:35 PM
 
So because you got bad customer service, you conclude that all hard drives are the same?

I don't get it.
     
   
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