Google Disk Failure Data

I’ve often wondered about what conditions lead to disk failure. Warm room? Cool room? Left outside in the rain?

Back when I was a techy looking after refrigerated server farms, I assumed it was cold for a good reason.

Google, who have rather a lot of disk drives, and burn through quite a few, have issued a report on the subject.

The conclusions, after observing the failure rate of 100, 000 drives?

There is no significant correlation between either temperature or activity level and failure probability, although failure rates do alter at extremes of high heat, and with old drives. Age isn’t a good predictor, either. The average failure rate among 1 year old drives was 2%, rising to 8% in years 2 and 3, but declining to 6% in year 4.

So, there you have it.

  1. SophieWSophieW02-19-2007

    Interesting. Living in Australia and the heat monitoring the temp of hard drives is pretty important. In fact had to swap one just last week. Hopefully my Mac will change that. :0

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