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I want to put two 8TB or 10TB hard drives as a RAID6 (or SHR1) array in my Synology NAS. At the moment the price per TB is the same. So from that perspective both are similarly fine.

However, in that future I will add more hard drives (up to 3) to the NAS to expand the RAID/SHR array. For this it will be beneficial if the new drives are of the same size as the old ones.

So my question is:

  • How future proof is the 10TB disk size compared to a 8TB disk size?

To elaborate a bit more:

  • Is it more likely that 10TB drives become discontinued?
  • Is it more likely that 8TB drives become per TB even cheaper than 10TB drives?

For these considerations I am thinking of the timeframe of from now to in ca. 1 or 2 years.

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  • You're asking us to predict the future. My crystal ball is broken.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Dec 31, 2021 at 13:27
  • @Tetsujin Well, I am asking people who know the market of hard drives what size patterns from their experience survive better than others... But of course, if somebody has a well working crystal ball, that could be interesting to hear about as well!
    – halloleo
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 0:25
  • I don't even have a crystal ball and still answered :)
    – Irsu85
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 18:11
  • And this is me as moderator, this can be answered using facts and should not be closed. Don't flag it please
    – Irsu85
    Commented Jan 3, 2022 at 8:40

3 Answers 3

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If you use SHR {Synology Hybrid Raid} as opposed to conventional RAID 5 or 6 at volume creation time then you are not restricted to use the same size disks later on when upgrading your volume in the Synology NAS. So choose 8TB disks now and then use 10TB ones later, or vice-versa, or mix & match them now. The Synology running as SHR won't care.

https://kb.synology.com/en-br/DSM/tutorial/What_is_Synology_Hybrid_RAID_SHR

But I would check that whatever disks you use are listed on the synology compatibility list so you get the best performance & reliability.

https://www.synology.com/en-us/compatibility

  • Is it more likely that 10TB drives become discontinued?
    • compared to 8tb, no. the market has never exhibited that trend. When 10tb HDD become obsolete you'll be using 12tb or larger disks
  • Is it more likely that 8TB drives become per TB even cheaper than 10TB drives?
    • again sort of not likely given historical trends. you won't necessarily find a 500gb hdd now cheaper than a 1 or 2tb disk. You'll have to calculate TB/$ at the time of purchase but for 8tb vs 10tb disks I think they're too close together in size to really worry about.

I am asking people who know the market of hard drives what size patterns from their experience survive better than others

That is my experience, having watched GB/$ and TB/$ when 500gb to 4tb disks were most common. Today it's all above 4tb, and I haven't done an excel spreadsheet of current hdd and ssd prices in a long time but that's what you have to do. Get & compare prices from a few credible disk retailer online.

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  • assuming you have larger than a 2-bay synology NAS. If you have just a 2-bay NAS then you are inherently restricted to RAID-1 but SHR does allow you to manipulate the volume 1 disk at a time, preserving the volume, allowing you to go up in disk size one at a time but for example you would have to replace both 8tb disks with 10tb's (as raid-1) before you can have the extra space available. Doing SHR on 2-bay only (mirrored) will only show size of the smaller disk.
    – ron
    Commented Jan 3, 2022 at 18:27
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One thing you may want to consider apart from size is the drive lifetime expectancy. For example Backblaze has been publishing their rather interesting (and from my point of view impressive) data sets for quite a while - it may be that using smaller drives may actually get you a better TCOO.

Related to that is the "baby" elephant in the room - helium filled drives. I don't think there is a good statistics of what happens once the helium leaks out of such a drives (or how long it would take), and about a year and half ago, 10TB were the largest air filled drives one could get, so those wishing to stay on the safe side were limited by that too.

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  • Interesting aspect. Will have a look at the Blackblaze reports.
    – halloleo
    Commented Jan 4, 2022 at 12:12
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More TB is more future proof, those tend to get cheaper per GB (see Crucial MX500 series) and you have more storage. I don't know if 10TB drives will be discontinued, that chance is a bit higher than for the 8TB drives, so it's a matter of risk. I would personally get a 2TB drive because I don't need much more than that and those are probably not gonna be discontinued :)

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  • Interesting. You say: "I don't know if 10TB drives will be discontinued, that chance is a bit higher than for the 8TB drives, so it's a matter of risk" Why do you think so? What's the rational for this? (I have a similar gut feeling, but I'm not an expert, that's why I ask the question.)
    – halloleo
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 1:20
  • 1
    10TB is not a multiple of 2 (binary), so those tend to be less popular after a longer time
    – Irsu85
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 10:42
  • Makes sense. I might go with the 8TB…
    – halloleo
    Commented Jan 2, 2022 at 7:33

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