[RndTbl] hard drive failure curve

Adam Thompson athompso at athompso.net
Thu Sep 4 02:41:02 CDT 2014

On 14-09-04 02:23 AM, Trevor Cordes wrote:
> The Cars example is imperfect, because, as you said "it's good for a
> while",

Yup.  Closest mass good I could think of offhand.

> Surely if you ASCII'd a modern car graph it wouldn't quite fit?

The key difference is that you can repair and maintain a car, whereas a 
HDD (or SSD, for that matter) is either alive and well, alive and dying, 
or dead - and there's nothing you can do about it.

> Your human being analogy is probably much closer to what I'm looking
> for, but that one definitely has an abrupt bathtub hockey-stick at the
> right hand side :-)

Yessss... although not so abrupt, at various points in history.

> Surely, though, in the world of consumer items something else must be
> just like hard drives?

Not that I can think of.  You have to combine a) non-negligible failure 
rate, with b) extremely tight tolerances, with c) variable quality 
control on (b), to get a similar result.  Outside the computing field, I 
can't think of anything [other than cars] that has as much complexity, 
as "finicky" as 10,000rpm spinning platters - AND is common enough that 
everyone will understand it.

-Adam Thompson
  athompso at athompso.net

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