[Beowulf] Consumer vs. Enterprise Hard Drives in Clusters

Bill Broadley bill at cse.ucdavis.edu
Wed Jan 28 01:52:25 EST 2009


I found my actual results from a WD consumer 320GB drive (single platter) with
the drive on the bench vs inside a 1U node:

http://cse.ucdavis.edu/bill/wd320-2MB-points.png

http://cse.ucdavis.edu/bill/wd320-2MB-points-vibration.png

Once the WD320 (a consumer drive) was replaced with a seagate es2 (raid
edition drive):

http://cse.ucdavis.edu/bill/seagate-es.png

So while it's dangerous to over generalize, I'd say the seagate ES2 is
dramatically more vibration resistant than the 320GB WD consumer drive I
tested.  My best guess is that is not uncommon, and when I manage to pry a
decent spec sheet out of vendor they do show dramatically different vibration
specifications.

So while I encourage folks to try the 2TB WD consumer drive in a 48 drive
array and report back, my expectations are low.  Personally I'll wait, I'm
sure both Seagate and WD will ship over 1TB raid editions at some point.
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