World's Crappiest Drives (was Re: A&J Microdrive)

From: Pete Turnbull <>
Date: Wed Dec 6 16:32:17 2000

On Dec 6, 12:54, r. 'bear' stricklin wrote:
> On Tue, 5 Dec 2000 wrote:
> > Miniscribe 3650
> I think I had one of these. 3.5" HH 40 MB MFM disk? ca. 60ms seek
> times? Loudest drive I've ever heard.

Maybe. I have a really nice 5MB Olivetti drive. It's 5 1/4" full height,
has an excellent stepper motor, and nicely distracts you from the noise of
the air conditioning.

> How about the Exabyte 8200? Famous for forgetting they had tapes in them
> and refusing to eject. Not only that, but it was commonly referred to as
> the 'write once, read never' backup media.

I haven't had that problem with mine. Come to think of it, that one's been
upgraded a couple of times. Unlike the one I gave away. I can't seem to
remember why I gave it away ;-)

> We won't talk about the TK50.

You're right, we won't, please. If anyone really needs to know why, take a
look at

> I will, however, nominate any hard disk Micropolis made which was in a
> smaller form factor than 5.25" FH. Garbage.


> Oh, and the Seagate Barracudas. Ran so fast they burned themselves up. At
> one point we had a 50% DOA rate on these drives. The remaining ones
> usually fried inside of 30 days. We never did figure out how Seagate
> managed to come up with their 500k-hour MTBF on these disks.

Well, you have to understand what MTBF means. It means that after some
number of hours, some proportion of the test set has a 50% chance of
failure. Nobody said anything about powering them up during that period.
 Never put a Barracuda in an SGI Indy or Indigo, it may invalidate your
warranty. In fact, it may invalidate several things. Permanently.

> > How about a vote on the BEST disk drives ever?
> The IBM UltraStar ES.

That's nice to know, that's what I bought for my servers.

> Nah, I had a 4096N which had stiction. It took progressively stronger
> shocks to the chassis to get it to spin up, until finally I was beating
> with a shoe. That situation ultimately ended in a head crash and data
> loss.

Sounds like my ST451N (? I think) which exploded. After a while the
stiction was so annoying that I cut a screwdriver slot in the exposed part
of the spindle. That was fine until one day a head stuck *while it was

Pete						Peter Turnbull
						Network Manager
						Dept. of Computer Science
						University of York
Received on Wed Dec 06 2000 - 16:32:17 GMT

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