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Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

NASguru
Apprentice

shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

It's been a while since I jumped on the forum but what brings me here is my NAS volume utilization is hovering around 65%.  I believe it's good until 80% and then starts to bark at you about storage space and performance?  So I'm looking to expand the volume but unfortunately have been reading about how WD, Segate and others have inserted shingled magnetic recording (SMR) drives into their NAS line ups without being up front about it.  To the best of my knowledge, the current drives I have which were purchased in 2017 use Perpendicular Magnetic Recording (PMR) and therefore perform equally well for write and read.  For reference, my current drives are:  Western Digital: 8TB: WD80EFZX & 4TB: WD40EFRX.

 

That all said, I saw a few articles stating that WD 2-6TB are SMR while the 8TB and above are CMR.  I believe CMR is essentially the same as PMR but dont' hold me to it.  Here's one of those articles on SMR vs CMR: https://nascompares.com/2020/04/16/your-wd-red-nas-hard-drives-might-be-using-smr-what-you-need-to-k... 

In any event, I'm looking at some WD Reds on Amazon and was wondering if anyone has some experience with their 8TB and above RED HDs and can confirm they are CMR.  For example:WD101EFAX  or WD100EFAX. Per the aricle above, all the Pros are CMR but I rather not spend the extra money just to gurantee a CMR drive.  

 

Thoughts?

Model: RN626X|ReadyNAS 626X – 6 Bays with Intel® Xeon® Quad-Core Server Processor
Message 1 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:

 

That all said, I saw a few articles stating that WD 2-6TB are SMR while the 8TB and above are CMR. 


WD has said that, so I am thinking that applies to the WD20EFAX, WD40EFAX and the WD60EFAX.  Synology shows the WD20EFAX and the WD60EFAX as SMR, but doesn't list the WD40EFAX at all.

 


@NASguru wrote:

I believe CMR is essentially the same as PMR but dont' hold me to it. 

CMR is just another name for PMR.

 


@NASguru wrote:

I'm looking at some WD Reds on Amazon and was wondering if anyone has some experience with their 8TB and above RED HDs and can confirm they are CMR. 


It's not that easy to tell.  If I'm understanding what I'm reading correctly, they use soft mapping to physical sectors (similar to an SSD).  And they remap updated sectors into the large cache, and don't necessarily re-write the SMR sections of the disk right away. Basically they have improved SMRs somewhat over the years.  

 

That said, I am running two WD100EFAX drives in my main NAS, and am not seeing any issues with general write speed, scrub times, or balance times.  I have four WD80EFZX running in a backup NAS, but no WD80EFAX drives..

Message 2 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

So timing is everything, when did you buy your WD100EFAX?  From what I read, they started inserting SMR drives into the red NAS line around early 2017.  Therefore, it's possible you didn't get a drive using SMR depending on when you purchased it.  The WD101EFAX also seems to be the replacement for it but both can still be purchased off Amazon with the WD101EFAX being about $10 more.  I was also under the impression you can run read/write programs such as CrystalDiskMark to determine if the drive can write 100+MB/s.  Most seem to agree that the SMR drives fall off to around 30MB/s which is the give away.  I suppose droping a 30GB file onto the drive would accomplished similar results.  I seen some who mentioned the ONLY way to determine is to call WD support and provide them a serial #.  I could always order the drives and upon receipt call them to verify.  Alternatively and if I trust WD to be honest I could just spend an extra $50-$60 per drive and get the pro version which are supposedly all CMR but then again why overpay if it's not necessary.  The other method of verification I saw was to open/destroy the drive and count platters but who has money to burn and even then it's no gurantee the next one will be the same.  Anyhow, rant over but was I was hoping for a simple black/white yes/no answer but alas it's a gamble either way.

Message 3 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:

So timing is everything, when did you buy your WD100EFAX? 

April/May 2019

 


@NASguru wrote:

I was also under the impression you can run read/write programs such as CrystalDiskMark to determine if the drive can write 100+MB/s. 

Not 100% sure on that.  Sequential writes from beginning to the end of the disk could run at near-normal speed. And with soft sector mapping there are a lot of tricks you could play in theory, especially if part of the drive is CMR.  

 

In any event, I did run a full erase on both drives before I added them to the NAS.  While I didn't closely monitor the times, I believe it was approximately 24 hours for each (which is ~115 MB/s for 10 TB).

 

I also have the resilver time in an old log zip.

data        resilver   2019-04-28 09:54:41  2019-04-29 17:46:39  completed 

This resilvered the first inserted WD100EFAX, and completed in ~32 hours.  6 TB on the WD100EFAX would have been written, and 18 TB of data would have been read on the other three drives (all WD60EFRX).  Plus the NAS was in use during the resync. 

 

I haven't noticed any slowdown in performance on sustained writes since they were installed.

 


@NASguru wrote:

if I trust WD to be honest

Seagate is known to have silently slipped SMR into some desktop drives.  Though they don't recommend those disks for RAID, I still think that's a breach of trust.

 

Of course WD has now confessed that they did silently slip SMR into the 2-6 TB Red Drives.  But in that confession they explicitly stated that larger Red drives (8 TB and up) used CMR.  It's one thing for a company to be silent.  It's another to make a false statement.

 

Personally I'd take WD at their word on the currently shipping drives.  Honestly I don't know if I trust them to disclose SMR in new drives they introduce in the future.  Their disclosure didn't include an apology or any promise of transparency in the future - instead they just asserted that their SMR Reds are fit for their purpose - which is quite debatable. 

 

Hopefully there will be a lesson learned here for both Seagate and WD.  I'll be looking for explicit statements on SMR, CMR (or HAMR) on future models I purchase.

Message 4 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

I ran across this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWYnM58C1ro

 

Might be worth following, as he is planning some testing of these drives in RAID.

Message 5 of 46
Sandshark
Sensei

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

I saw someone mention weighing them to see if it has fewer platters.  I don't know about that, the platters are pretty light.  But that means you have to buy it first, too.

Message 6 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@Sandshark wrote:

I saw someone mention weighing them to see if it has fewer platters.  I don't know about that, the platters are pretty light.  But that means you have to buy it first, too.


Yeah, I don't think I'd trust a weight comparison.  There could be other component differences between the models, or even the case.

 

WD did respond with a list of specific models that used SMR and said that all other models did not.  Personally I'd just go with that.  

 

2020-04-24-image-8.jpg

It'll be interesting to see the performance numbers for RAID resync when the youtube guy above presents his testing results.  Also, if other folks here have the EFAX models above, it'd be helpful to hear your experiences. 

 

The negative impact of SMR does depend on the details of how well WD manages the cache, and how many SMR zones are on the disks (also the capacity of CMR zones on the disk).  No matter how you do it, write performance will sometimes be "unpredictable".  But if they found a way to handle RAID resync and reshaping in a reasonable time, it might be acceptable for a light-duty NAS.  Personally I'll stick with CMR though.

 

I did run across a 2018 WD whitepaper on this btw - https://documents.westerndigital.com/content/dam/doc-library/en_us/assets/public/western-digital/col...

Message 7 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

I ran across this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWYnM58C1ro

 

Might be worth following, as he is planning some testing of these drives in RAID.


Got it, although his current video is a rehash of everything I've seen already.

Message 8 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

@Sandshark wrote:

I saw someone mention weighing them to see if it has fewer platters.  I don't know about that, the platters are pretty light.  But that means you have to buy it first, too.


Yeah, I don't think I'd trust a weight comparison.  There could be other component differences between the models, or even the case.

 

WD did respond with a list of specific models that used SMR and said that all other models did not.  Personally I'd just go with that.  

 

2020-04-24-image-8.jpg

It'll be interesting to see the performance numbers for RAID resync when the youtube guy above presents his testing results.  Also, if other folks here have the EFAX models above, it'd be helpful to hear your experiences. 

 

The negative impact of SMR does depend on the details of how well WD manages the cache, and how many SMR zones are on the disks (also the capacity of CMR zones on the disk).  No matter how you do it, write performance will sometimes be "unpredictable".  But if they found a way to handle RAID resync and reshaping in a reasonable time, it might be acceptable for a light-duty NAS.  Personally I'll stick with CMR though.

 

I did run across a 2018 WD whitepaper on this btw - https://documents.westerndigital.com/content/dam/doc-library/en_us/assets/public/western-digital/col...


I saw that same chart off the link in my original post and hopefully those are the ONLY SMR drives. However, I've seen a few Amazon reviews claiming the 8TB drives also have SMR. Unfortunately, WD was shaddy here and made it difficult to trust them at their word. What they need to do is put the recording method into the tech specs so people can make inform decisions on what's best for their enviroment/design. Otherwise, I agree it's CMR for me as I want no part of the online horror stories about mixing SMR an CMR drives and failed RAIDS.

Message 9 of 46
Sandshark
Sensei

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

My NAS on which I hade to replace a failed WD60EFRX with a WD60EFAX just completed a scrub for the first time since the replacement, and it took almost 2x longer than before.  I don't think there was a lot of difference in the traffic on the NAS that might have been the cause.

Message 10 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@Sandshark wrote:

I saw someone mention weighing them to see if it has fewer platters.  I don't know about that, the platters are pretty light.  But that means you have to buy it first, too.


Right, and the sceince made sense to me as well since we are talking grams or simple physics here.  This guy has a whole database where he weighed the entire drive and could predict the # of TBs per platter and therefore can infer whether SMR was used or not based on past HD platter count using PMR/CMR.  It's worth a look if you're curious but of course he hasn't tested every drive and caveats his methods: The HDD Platter Capacity Database 

 

In short, if your platter/TB ratio was 1.5-1.67TB/platter or less then your drive doesn't appear to employ SMR. It seemed all the SMR drives are now capable of 2.0TB/platter.  It was also nice to see him confirm the 8TB+ Red drives as benig CMR/PMR and just rebadged HGST Ultrastars:

 

Rebadged HGST Ultrastar
WD80EFAX-xxKNBNx 8TB (5/10)*
WD101EFAX-xxLDBNx 10TB (6/12)**

 

So at this point, I'll either spring for the 10TB drive above or the 12TB drive in hopes of getting ahead of my data hoarding. Either one I believe is a safe bet at this point given the press releases and other available sources.  I won't run out and buy a scale to weigh them but will certainly run some CrystalDiskMark tests as a preliminary check.  

Message 11 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@Sandshark wrote:

My NAS on which I hade to replace a failed WD60EFRX with a WD60EFAX just completed a scrub for the first time since the replacement, and it took almost 2x longer than before.  I don't think there was a lot of difference in the traffic on the NAS that might have been the cause.


So we know the EFRX drives are CMR and the EFAX drives <6TBs are SMR.  One of the hallmarks of the SMR drives is much slower random write speeds which you are witnessing with a scrub.  I personally wouldn't mix the two drive technologies as there are numerous reports of raids failing.  If at all possible I'd return that drive and go 10TB or larger even though as a single drive you won't see the benefits to an expanded volume.  I'm assuming Xraid and all existing drives are 6TBs here.  Alterntaively, you could upgrade a pair of 6TBs to 10TBs and repurpose the other two 6TB drives.  I'm also making the assumption here that Netgear's ReadyNAS software doesn't take into account mixing CMR and SMR drives to prevent a failed RAID.  Hopefully someone with greater knowledge of their release notes and revisions may know.  

Message 12 of 46
Sandshark
Sensei

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:


I personally wouldn't mix the two drive technologies as there are numerous reports of raids failing.  If at all possible I'd return that drive and go 10TB or larger even though as a single drive you won't see the benefits to an expanded volume.  I'm assuming Xraid and all existing drives are 6TBs here.  


Correct assumption, though the total situation is more complicated (see below).  Unfortunately, I only learned of all this well after I purchased the drive, so I think a return is not possible.  I think it was the last scrub, in January, that pushed the old drive over the brink, just a couple months past warranty.  I do have a very comprehensive backup system that does not have the same issue, but this volume is one of the more active ones I have.  I have a ton of space with all my volumes (some 20TB remaining before I even go past 80% on any voluime). so swapping for larger drives I know (or think I do as of right now) won't benefit me space wise.  And I'm not sure if swapping it for a 7200RPM drive would be better or worse.

 

They are in a 12-bay rack-mount system (I moved the volumes from an RN516 and EDA500 into it), and WD only recommends them for use in an up to 8 bay system due to no vibration compensation, but the NAS is in a very solid rack and I don't move it with anything powered on.  The other 6 drives are older 3TB Reds, and I have spares for them because the 6TB were originally also all 3TB.  To start moving them all to drives recommended for a 12-bay NAS or server would be quite expensive.  And if done one or two at a time, I'll have a mix of 7200's and 5400's during the process.

 

In normal use, I don't notice anything terrible about the speed.  And the NAS has enough processor power that the scrub really doesn't slow it down much (unlike when one volume was in an EDA500).  So, for now, I'm going to wait and see.

Message 13 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@Sandshark wrote:

@NASguru wrote:


I personally wouldn't mix the two drive technologies as there are numerous reports of raids failing.  If at all possible I'd return that drive and go 10TB or larger even though as a single drive you won't see the benefits to an expanded volume.  I'm assuming Xraid and all existing drives are 6TBs here.  


Correct assumption, though the total situation is more complicated (see below).  Unfortunately, I only learned of all this well after I purchased the drive, so I think a return is not possible.  I think it was the last scrub, in January, that pushed the old drive over the brink, just a couple months past warranty.  I do have a very comprehensive backup system that does not have the same issue, but this volume is one of the more active ones I have.  I have a ton of space with all my volumes (some 20TB remaining before I even go past 80% on any voluime). so swapping for larger drives I know (or think I do as of right now) won't benefit me space wise.  And I'm not sure if swapping it for a 7200RPM drive would be better or worse.

 

They are in a 12-bay rack-mount system (I moved the volumes from an RN516 and EDA500 into it), and WD only recommends them for use in an up to 8 bay system due to no vibration compensation, but the NAS is in a very solid rack and I don't move it with anything powered on.  The other 6 drives are older 3TB Reds, and I have spares for them because the 6TB were originally also all 3TB.  To start moving them all to drives recommended for a 12-bay NAS or server would be quite expensive.  And if done one or two at a time, I'll have a mix of 7200's and 5400's during the process.

 

In normal use, I don't notice anything terrible about the speed.  And the NAS has enough processor power that the scrub really doesn't slow it down much (unlike when one volume was in an EDA500).  So, for now, I'm going to wait and see.


Got it and there's nothing wrong with taking a wait and see approach given you're volumes are backed up.  I also agree backups are the key to preventing any type of unrecoverable situation.  Is it possible to move that SMR drive to one of your less/non-acitve backups instead?  The reason I ask is the SMR drives were originally advertised as archival drives so they are fine from a storage point and don't run into issues until there is a heavy write activities.  I don't believe there would be any issues mixing 7200 drives with 5400 but it may make more sense to place the faster spinning drives to the physical outside of the drive line up inside your bays?  Yeah, I heard on a few reviews those add on EDA500 run less than optimal compared to the NAS itself which is why I actually have two physical NAS (primary/secondary).  

Message 14 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:
Got it and there's nothing wrong with taking a wait and see approach given your volumes are backed up. 

There would be value in keeping it as-is, and probing for performance issues.

 

I'm a little surprised that raid sync took longer, since simply reconstructing the drive contents should use sequential writes.  Though any other writing would disrupt that, and would cause it to take longer.

 

I'd expect that expansion would take longer, since I don't think reshaping is done with purely sequential writes. 

 

Random writes might be the killer (database updates, torrents, etc) - even if the workload is within the 180 TB/year (500 GB/day?) range in the WD spec.  

 

FWIW, if the SMR zones are fairly small, then the drives might actually give reasonable performance for most people.  The goal wasn't to maximize the space on the platter - instead they were just aiming at getting to 2 TB. So they might have ended up with fairly small SMR zones (or a generous CMR zone). 

 

Though of course they should have disclosed this, and ideally provided a white paper detailing the performance.

Message 15 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

@NASguru wrote:
Got it and there's nothing wrong with taking a wait and see approach given your volumes are backed up. 

There would be value in keeping it as-is, and probing for performance issues.

 

That would depend on how much you want to be a guinea pig with your NAS.  Me personally, I'm a set it and forget it kind of guy so I prefer to stick with what works and then move on to something else.  Again, there's nothing wrong with wanting to test it out though.

 

 

I'm a little surprised that raid sync took longer, since simply reconstructing the drive contents should use sequential writes.  Though any other writing would disrupt that, and would cause it to take longer.

 

I'd expect that expansion would take longer, since I don't think reshaping is done with purely sequential writes. 

 

Random writes might be the killer (database updates, torrents, etc) - even if the workload is within the 180 TB/year (500 GB/day?) range in the WD spec.  


I mostly seen the issue with SMRs come up during the resilvering (replacing a drive) process.  Depending what Google results you trust or NAS you're referrencing the resilvering process is very similar to running a scrub so it makes senses it would take a LOT longer.

 


Though of course they should have disclosed this, and ideally provided a white paper detailing the performance.


I concur which is really the crux of the issue more than anything else.  The only other thing I would add is that it may be wise to mark SMR drive(s) with a sharpie?  My memory isn't what it use to be so it may be helpful if you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to play music chairs with hard drives between volume or even if you repurpose the drives down the road for stand alone applications.  

Message 16 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:

@StephenB wrote:

There would be value in keeping it as-is, and probing for performance issues.

That would depend on how much you want to be a guinea pig with your NAS. 

@Sandshark has done quite a number of experiments on various NAS, and the info gathered has been helpful here.

 

Obviously doing them on your main NAS is a different matter.  Though he does seem to be inclined to "wait and see" - and if he does that, I suspect he'd be keeping a close eye on performance anyway.   

 


@NASguru wrote:


I mostly seen the issue with SMRs come up during the resilvering (replacing a drive) process.  

And I guess I'm saying that I find that curious.  If you are writing sequentially from the beginning to the end of the disk, then there shouldn't be any slowdown with SMR.  And that is what resilvering should be doing.

 

Of course if you add or update files in the middle of the resilvering, that is another matter.  That would trigger the background process of rewriting the tracks between the ones you updated and the end of their zone(s).  If btrfs does some file system maintenance (or creates snapshots) during the process, then that could similarly trigger the background process.

 

This is one of several scenarios where I am interested in seeing some well-controlled performance tests with RAID.

 

Message 17 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

@NASguru wrote:

@StephenB wrote:

There would be value in keeping it as-is, and probing for performance issues.

That would depend on how much you want to be a guinea pig with your NAS. 

@Sandshark has done quite a number of experiments on various NAS, and the info gathered has been helpful here.

 

Obviously doing them on your main NAS is a different matter.  Though he does seem to be inclined to "wait and see" - and if he does that, I suspect he'd be keeping a close eye on performance anyway.   

Sounds good and hopefully he comes back with something worthy.  

 


 


@NASguru wrote:


I mostly seen the issue with SMRs come up during the resilvering (replacing a drive) process.  

And I guess I'm saying that I find that curious.  If you are writing sequentially from the beginning to the end of the disk, then there shouldn't be any slowdown with SMR.  And that is what resilvering should be doing.

 

Of course if you add or update files in the middle of the resilvering, that is another matter.  That would trigger the background process of rewriting the tracks between the ones you updated and the end of their zone(s).  If btrfs does some file system maintenance (or creates snapshots) during the process, then that could similarly trigger the background process.

 

This is one of several scenarios where I am interested in seeing some well-controlled performance tests with RAID.

 


Agreed, the devil is always in the details and even more so when it comes to technology.  If you have the time, then all the power to those that want to lab it up in a controlled enviroment and narrow it down to specific occurences (I suspect WD already has this knowledge but ran with SMR drives anyway).  Unfortunately, in real world enviroments things are rarely those one-offs situations so the value or usage case may not be there.  SMR drives should probably not be in a line up of NAS drives and at least Seagate realizes that although they are proably more about sezing the moment to steal market share from WD than anything else.  

Message 18 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

FYI, may save some time on testing SMR drives?  Western Digital Blog 

Of course they recommended spending more for their Pro or Gold. Smiley Frustrated

 

WD Red HDDs have for many years reliably powered home and small business NAS systems around the world and have been consistently validated by major NAS manufacturers. Having built this reputation, we understand that, at times, our drives may be used in system workloads far exceeding their intended uses. Additionally, some of you have recently shared that in certain, more data intensive, continuous read/write use cases, the WD Red HDD-powered NAS systems are not performing as you would expect.

 

If you are encountering performance that is not what you expected, please consider our products designed for intensive workloads. These may include our WD Red Pro or WD Gold drives, or perhaps an Ultrastar drive. Our customer care team is ready to help and can also determine which product might be best for you.

 

Message 19 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote:

FYI, may save some time on testing SMR drives? 

 


I don't think so.

 

Basically they are saying that their SMR drives should be perfectly ok in NAS if the workload is <= 180TB per year. 

 

Then they essentially allege the converse - that people seeing performance problems must be exceeding that workload limit.  So it's not WD's fault.  But they are very careful to say "some people", likely on advice from their lawyers.  

 

I'm not interested in the CYA part that you highlighted.  I am interested in understanding more about how these drives actually do perform in ReadyNAS, and get some understanding on when it might be ok to use them.

Message 20 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

@NASguru wrote:

FYI, may save some time on testing SMR drives? 

 


I don't think so.

 

Basically they are saying that their SMR drives should be perfectly ok in NAS if the workload is <= 180TB per year. 

 

Then they essentially allege the converse - that people seeing performance problems must be exceeding that workload limit.  So it's not WD's fault.  But they are very careful to say "some people", likely on advice from their lawyers.  

 

I'm not interested in the CYA part that you highlighted.  I am interested in understanding more about how these drives actually do perform in ReadyNAS, and get some understanding on when it might be ok to use them.


Smiley LOL  I just found the response comical/entertaining which is why I said 'may' save some time.  

Message 21 of 46
StephenB
Guru

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@NASguru wrote: I just found the response comical/entertaining which is why I said 'may' save some time


FWIW, I have a WD60EFRX that is showing some UNCs.  I'm replacing it with a WD100EFAX (just ordered). Of course the size is nice, but an another factor here is that I've seen more issues with my WD60EFRX drives than my other Red models.  So pre-SMR I decided not to purchase any more WD60EFRX drives (and was shifting to 10 TB drives in this particular NAS).

 

As an aside, I looked at the specs of the WD101EFAX (a bit newer than the WD100).  Everything's identical, except the power use on the WD101 is noticably higher.  I saw some speculation that the WD101 might be air-filled instead of helium filled, and that might account for it.  Personally I like the lower power of the WD Reds, so I went with the older model.

Message 22 of 46
NASguru
Apprentice

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations


@StephenB wrote:

@NASguru wrote: I just found the response comical/entertaining which is why I said 'may' save some time


FWIW, I have a WD60EFRX that is showing some UNCs.  I'm replacing it with a WD100EFAX (just ordered). Of course the size is nice, but an another factor here is that I've seen more issues with my WD60EFRX drives than my other Red models.  So pre-SMR I decided not to purchase any more WD60EFRX drives (and was shifting to 10 TB drives in this particular NAS).

 

As an aside, I looked at the specs of the WD101EFAX (a bit newer than the WD100).  Everything's identical, except the power use on the WD101 is noticably higher.  I saw some speculation that the WD101 might be air-filled instead of helium filled, and that might account for it.  Personally I like the lower power of the WD Reds, so I went with the older model.


Ah, good tip and given no performance advantage I'd go with the helium filled drive as well. Unfortunately, I have 8TB drives currently so I'll need two 12TB or larger for it to make sense.  It's just a hard pill to swallon in terms of cost.  Although, if I really wanted to roll the dice there's the option to shuck some external drives and see what you get.  Smiley Wink

Message 23 of 46
Sandshark
Sensei

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

The typical workload on my volume containing the 6TB drives, with the one EFAX variety, is lots of small files (music, pictures, general documents) plus videos.  I frankly don't care how long it takes to write the videos, so long as they play right (and they do).  So my normal usage may not really tickle the area where those drives become a factor, save the scrubs.  So, I may not be affected by it so much.

 

If I ever re-arrange what's were on my volumes, I may move the more static things to the volume with the SMR drives.  I'd do it now, but it's my main volume, and moving that is a PITA.

 

My PC backups are on a completely separate volume.  The new file started every two weeks is massive, but I still woudn't worry a lot if it was a tad slow.  It just has to complete during the night.  I have a volme of SSDs for times when I want to write to the NAS rather than a local hard drive on the computer.

 

I don't have any other of the SMR drives to play with in one of my sandbox NAS.  It would be interresting to try some things with two TLR and one TLR and one SMR and compare the results.

Message 24 of 46
SamirD
Prodigy

Re: shingled magnetic recording (SMR) hard drive fiasco - inquiring on recommendations

Servethehome just did a nice article on the SMR drives in a RAID:

https://www.servethehome.com/wd-red-smr-vs-cmr-tested-avoid-red-smr/

 

They also have a table of SMR drives:

https://www.servethehome.com/surreptitiously-swapping-smr-into-hard-drives-must-end/wd-smr-and-cmr-i...

 

WD has a class action lawsuit filed against them:

https://www.hattislaw.com/cases/investigations/western-digital-lawsuit-for-shipping-slower-smr-hard-...

 

I've always only purchased enterprise class 5yr warranty drives, even for desktop use.  If you look properly you can find them at great prices too, so you can get a really good price/performance ratio without having to deal with 1M MTBF drives with lesser warranties as well as shenanigans.

 

Message 25 of 46
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