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Which hard disk drive do you suggest with trustworthy SMART diagnostics? That is, a hard disk that can truthfully report sector reallocations and other pre-failure indicators.

I'm asking this because I have seen quite a few hard disks with SMART support fail with no warning in the SMART diagnostics, so a hard drive that can report such problems with some degree of reliability would be much appreciated :)

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SMART only specifies the protocol how a disk communicates SMART Data to the host controller. There is no specification about how to interpret received data. Basically there is absolutely no reason and way to rely on SMART data. There are drive failures which are not covered in SMART reporting, like dropping a drive while carrying it.

You can use monitoring software to overlook the reported values but you have to do your own assumptions and interpretations based on often undocumented value ranges. Would you want to rely on that?

Basically it boils down to this: If a drive reports any problem, trust it and replace the drive. If a drive doesn't report a problem, don't trust it and be prepared for unannounced failures. Always have current backups! Theft is not announced in SMART status.

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