[Ukfreebsd] "green" HDDs

Timothy Baldock tb at entropy.me.uk
Mon Jan 10 18:13:43 GMT 2011

I have been using the WD "Green" hard disks for ages in my fileserver, 
though not with ZFS. They are attached to an Areca hardware RAID card in 
RAID5 configuration. Currently using 2TB ones, model number WDC 

I have never had any issues with the power management funtionality or 
performance of these disks, nor any issues using them in this RAID 
configuration. This may be a result of using the HW RAID controller 
however so YMMV using them with ZFS.

I am also using similar models for backup (WDC WD10EADS-00L5B1) arranged 
into a RAID0 array using gstripe/geom. Again, never seen any issues with 
the power management. I was seeing around 100MB/s write speed in testing 
to this array with 512k gstripe blocksize.

Given the price difference between WD's "Green" and "Black" ranges for 
this kind of home application I don't see much wrong with the Green ones.

AFAIK the main difference between the "Green" range and the higher-end 
server/workstation grade disks is how quickly they communicate back to 
the RAID controller about read/write errors. This is a feature known as 
Time-Limited Error Recovery, see:




On 09/01/2011 17:09, dgmm wrote:
> Has anyone used any of the so called "green" or "eco" HDDs?
> I'm seriously considering the HP micro server that's generated so much
> interest here recently and thought I'd drop in a few 2TB HDDs.
> It's purely for home/personal use, ie dump the CD/DVD collection to it etc.
> I'm looking at running FreeBSD using ZFS, 4 HDDs RAIDz with one parity and
> booting from USB pendrive or SSD (or maybe just plug the supplied HDD into
> the CD port)
> Anyway, getting back to the main point, I've come across a few comments in
> various places suggesting the "green" or "eco" HDDs might have some problems
> in RAID(z) configs due to possible spin down/up and/or showing as not
> avalable at inconvenient times.
> Has anyone used these drives and have some observations on their use?
> Bear with me if any of the above seems a bit basic.  I'm not an admin :-)

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