"From one of the Internet's largest databases comes an interesting look at hard drives the Google way. With hundreds of thousands of these babies being put into use each day by the Internet giant, this evaluation points to "drive manufacturer, model, and age" as being the primary factors that induce hard drive failure."
Most HDDs nowadays are all pretty equally good quality (save for defective devices), with some brands slightly outperforming others. I've never had a bad experience with one and I've gotten flawless performances for a little under a year with Seagate 300GB and Maxtor 300GB. I've even got a 120GB MDT (Magnetic Data Technologies, not as popular as the other brands) that's been in my Xbox since late 2002 and under heavy use and tinkering with hasn't acted up once.
Personally, I think Seagates are the best, then Samsung, WD, Hitachi and Maxtor, though Maxtor's newer drives are of much higher quality, so they're probably around WD quality now. Most big name HDDs are fine, just check out the reviews on Newegg, there are a couple bad apples, but the overwhelming are positive, because HDDs are designed to last.
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