Five years of Backblaze monitoring confirm that SSDs are far
Hardware

Five years of Backblaze monitoring confirm that SSDs are far more reliable than HDDs

Cloud backup service Backblaze has released a report for the second quarter of 2022 showing the reliability level of SSDs compared to traditional HDDs when used as boot drives in its servers. The data has been collected since 2018 and was carried out by the company after a five-year analysis Conclusionthat SSDs are more reliable than hard drives.

    Image Credit: Backblaze

Image Credit: Backblaze

Backblaze has been collecting SSD lifespan stats since it began upgrading its storage servers to replace traditional HDDs. It took the company 5 years to identify a significant difference in failure rates between SSDs and HDDs of the same age. Now 2558 SSDs are installed in the servers of the service.

    Graph of failed SSD and HDD dynamics through Q2 2022. Image source: Backblaze

Diagram of the dynamics of the number of failures of SSD and HDD depending on their age

Within the first year of operation, 0.66% of the HDDs failed and not a single SSD. In the second year, the percentage of disks that failed increased to 1.54%, with SSDs to 0.85% (of the remaining number). In the third year of observation, a further 1.38% of the hard drives and 0.79% of the solid state drives failed. At the end of the fourth year, the company received 1.83% of the failed HDDs and 1.05% of the failed SSDs. In the fifth year of operation, the number of hard disk failures increased to 3.55% compared to 0.92% for SSDs. This indicates that SSDs that had been running for five years ended up being three times more reliable than HDDs that had been running for the same period.

Curiously, according to BackBlaze, the probability of an SSD failure does not increase with age. But you need to understand that the model of using disks as bootable is not writing large amounts of data on them, so the study almost does not take into account the wear and tear of flash memory due to numerous erase-write cycles.

As a result, SSDs are more reliable because they have no moving parts. However, SSDs are likely to fail prematurely due to excessive writes, faulty firmware, and manufacturing defects. However, as the Backblaze stats show, a very small percentage of users are at risk of this happening.

“At this point, we can reasonably say that SSDs are more reliable than regular HDDs as boot drives in our environment.”noted in backblaze.

About the author

Dylan Harris

Dylan Harris is fascinated by tests and reviews of computer hardware.

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