It’s safe to say that we are in an age where data consumption is on the rise, and along with it we are fast needing more storage space on our laptops and PCs.  Hard drives (also known as HDD) provide the answer to this new age millennial dilemma and will store anything (digital) you need it to store. When buying yourself a hard drive there are a few things you must look out for. #WebafricaCares and we want to ensure you receive absolute value for your money.

We have summarised a few key specifications and factors to take into account when buying a new hard drive (HDD) because it’s important to have all devices using the internet, equal to the stature of your awesome Webafrica internet service 😉

What to look for in a Hard Drive:

Cost vs Quality:

  • Most lower-priced hard drives are aimed at consumers and do not sport the unique features of its upgraded versions.
  • This is usually worth it for many consumers, but if you are seeking improved reliability, a longer warranty period, and faster performance, you might be better off selecting the enterprise version of a drive.
  • Backblaze’s hard drive reliability data showed that the failure rate of a consumer drive was consistently higher than its equivalent enterprise model.
  • This may not make a major difference if you are just buying a drive for standard desktop use, but a powerful workstation or gaming PC used on a daily basis may benefit from the increased performance and reliability of an enterprise drive.


  • No hard drive lasts forever, and you should always consider the reliability of the drive you are purchasing.
  • This is especially true if you will be storing important files on the drive or will be using it as a backup for your primary storage.
  • One of the easiest ways to determine the reliability of a hard drive is by its warranty period.

Recording Technology

  • Many HDD buyers may not realize that there are different types of recording technology which each have their own trade-offs.
  • The most common type of recording technology is Perpendicular Magnetic Recording (PMR), which writes and reads data from circular tracks on a spinning platter.
  • There is another technology named Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR), which overlaps recording tracks to store data at a lower cost.
  • This means that SMR drives can cost less than their PMR counterparts, but will experience more write delays and lower peak average performance.

Helium over Air-filled HDD 

  • These types of drives have two really cool advantages – they generate less heat and use less power than normal hard drives.
  • Helium and or Air drives are more expensive than their conventional ones – so, if need be do your best to save up, it will be worth the effort.

Capacity and Speed

  • The two most important factors to consider when buying a new HDD are a general capacity and the read/write speed.
  • When it comes to capacity, it is generally better to get a bigger drive than necessary, as long as you don’t sacrifice any performance and reliability.


Now you know everything you need to know to make a great HDD purchase – enjoy storing all those epic downloads 😉

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