It has been 3 months of walking on egg shells thanks to Seagate.
3 Months since the beginning of the problems.
3 Months since the first THREE Seagate 7200.11 ST3500320AS died in rapid succession and took out the small business server. Leaving us in the lurch. I struggled to find the source of the problems, as the drives reported they were fine. I swapped out the power supply and motherboard in an effort to find the root cause.
End result? Nothing. No rhyme or reason, no problems found by diagnostic tools. No way to RMA.
Without even thinking about it, we purchased 4 more to replace the three malfunctioning drives. Going from a RAID 5 array to a RAID 10 array.
A month later, after I moved our Hyper-V server to the hosting facility, a drive in THAT system started dropping out of the RAID 1 array.
1 month ago, the drive on the Hyper-V server started having more and more problems. I started to be suspect of the Seagate drives at that point. I recommended to my employer that we replace the drives in the server with two Western Digital Caviar Black 500GB HDDs, then the first one ‘died’. 1 was moved into the array and the other is a hot spare for when the other Seagate gives up the ghost.
It wasn’t until I started putting the 4 failed drives through real world usage that I discovered how truly flawed they are. They can’t handle being left on for long periods of time (ie. 2 weeks) without a brief power-down to give them a break. If they malfunction then, they will cause a BSOD then stop responding to even the BIOS query. If it DOESN’T just stop responding all together, it will then begin to drop some communications, slowing transfers until when usage spikes beyond it’s tolerance and causes the system to bluescreen all together.
SD1A (version 2 to fix the defective first firmware release that stopped drives from responding) does NOT fix the ST3500320AS. There is apparently a version 3, which I have flashed onto all problematic drives and I’m beginning to re-start testing….again.
Seagate is circulating all sorts of new firmware releases in an effort to get to the bottom of this huge problem. But suffice to say, my confidence in them is drastically shaken and I will not be recommending them again for the foreseeable future.