In seems that certain Seagate hard disks are failing at an alarming rate. The Seagate Barracuda drives in question are being manufactured in Thailand with reference # ST31000340AS firmware level SD15. It is being said that Seagate is replacing the drives with the exact model and firmware which could again fail. In the article it states that:

Users seem convinced, energetically so in some cases, that the incidence of such drive failures is far higher than the statistically low incidence of failures to be expected with any drive.

Data can be recovered from a failed drive by using a data recovery firm which, of course, costs money that Seagate will not refund. For example, you could use i365, a Seagate company, to get your data back and pay Seagate twice – once for a disk to store your data on and a second time to get it back when the drive fails. Perhaps Seagate could issue special i365 vouchers to customers with Barracudas bricked by the problem?

As always users should backup their data, but there is an obvious additional problem here. What happens if you backup to disk and the backup disk is also a Barracuda 7200.11?

A 17-page thread about this firmware failure problem is going strong on a Seagate forum. Frustrated users have complained that postings and threads have been removed by moderators.

But what I found disturbing is the fact that starting in 2009, Seagte is reducing their warranty from 5 to 3 years on their drives. I always used Seagate because of the strong warranty period. 🙁

What do you think?

Comments welcome.


Warranty cuts