WD Internal storage: RAID optimized HDDs


Hi all!

I’m new here so feel free to welcome me. :robothappy:

Can anyone here please tell me if the Caviar Black series of drives are suitable for RAID applications?

Allow me to explain what I mean. I am very used to Seagate drives and I know their products very well. When it comes to internal disk drives, Seagate has its popular Barracuda series to offer, the 7200.12 being the most current generation (gen 12). These drives are their best performing desktop models, comparable with WD Caviar Black when in terms of performance. However, Seagate does not recommend the Barracuda 7200.12 drives for RAID configurations. They claim that these are not suitable for RAID applications due to the lack of extra programming in the firmware which is required for RAID optimized disk drives. Instead, Seagate recommends the use of the Barracuda ES series of disk drives which are RAID optimized and for that extra optimization programming they cost a lot more than regular Barracuda drives. So my question here would be, is WD using the same practice with dividing the internal desktop drives in two categories; RAID optimized, and a non-RAID optimized drives? Since I am considering making the change from Seagate to WD as my primary disk drive supplier, all for good reasons which I won’t discuss here, I would greatly appreciate if someone could shed some light on this question for me.

If you do answer this question, please try to give me some examples of internal WD desktop drives that are RAID compliant. I asked this question to Miguel at the WD Support but he didn’t give me the answer I needed. All he said was that I should be looking for the ones labeled as “RAID EDITION”. WD does not have any such labeling on its internal disk drives, at least not that I am aware of. Perhaps he meant the external disk drive solutions like the My Book which I know comes in a RAID version and is probably labeled “RAID EDITION” (I know of MAC EDITION for sure). It doesn’t seem to be possible to browse through the WD internal drives based on their primary application (like go to Products, Desktop, Internal drives by application; Desktop kit, RAID, SAS, etc.). Can someone just give me a link to a data sheet or something where I can see exactly which drives by WD are RAID optimized?

Thanks in advance!


I’m sorry, I just realized that I may have been unclear about what kind of RAID I meant. So here is a little clarification. I need desktop RAID, in other words two to four drives for internal installation in a desktop computer. In other words, I don’t need enterprise class drives for blade servers or any other such mission-critical application. The answer I got from Miguel at WD Support is that I should be looking for Velociraptor, WD S25, RE4, RE3 or RE4-GP. I am pretty sure that not all of these have SATA interface. And those that do have SATA are aimed primarily at server RAID applications. All I need is a desktop RAID. So I ask this again, is it true that a set of Caviar Black drives won’t fit my needs?