(credit: Alpha six)
Backblaze, the low cost cloud backup and storage provider, has published its drive reliability numbers for the final quarter, and full year, of 2016.
The company uses self-built pods of 45 or 60 disks for its storage.

Each pod is initially assembled with identical disks, but different pods use different sizes and models of disk, depending on age and availability.

The standout finding: three 45-disk pods using 4TB Toshiba disks, and one 45-disk pod using 8TB HGST disks, went a full year without a single spindle failing.

These are, respectively, more than 145 and 45 years of aggregate usage without a fault.
The Toshiba result makes for a nice comparison against the drive’s spec sheet.

Toshiba rates that model as having a 1-million-hour mean time to failure (MTTF). Mean time to failure (or mean time between failures, MTBF—the two measures are functionally identical for disks, with vendors using both) is an aggregate property: given a large number of disks, Toshiba says that you can expect to see one disk failure for every million hours of aggregated usage. Over 2016, those disks accumulated 1.2 million hours of usage without failing, healthily surpassing their specification.
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