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picardvskirk
1 Copper

Non-certified hard drives (WD Gold 8TB/10TB drives) in R520 server

Hi everyone, I’ve got an R520 Server that’s out of warranty and I would like to replace all the drives. We’re looking at replacing the 8 x 2TB SAS drives with 8 x 8TB or 10TB WD Gold SATA drives. This system will become a file server with primarily static data.

The original specs for the R520 say a maximum limit of 32TB but my guess is that’s because 4TB drives were the supported limit at the time. Also, I recently received pricing from a Dell rep on NLSAS 6/8/10TB drives so it looks like the size of the drives is fine.

I’ve read on other forums comments about Dell-certified vs non-certified drives. I’ve heard everything from 'you must use Dell certified drives otherwise you’re asking for trouble' to 'no problem with using other drives'. I won’t be using consumer drives, the WD Gold are enterprise drives. 

My assumption is that the drives should work fine but I thought I’d post in case anyone had any advice or comments.

Thanks!

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3 Replies

RE: Non-certified hard drives (WD Gold 8TB/10TB drives) in R520 server

Hello.

The original specs for the R520 say a maximum limit of 32TB but my guess is that’s because 4TB drives were the supported limit at the time. Also, I recently received pricing from a Dell rep on NLSAS 6/8/10TB drives so it looks like the size of the drives is fine.

What controller? Note that PERC H700 controller and higher support hard drive capacity of greater than 2TB without any defined maximum capacity. However, it is advisable to have your controller firmware up to date and validated backup of data before any such upgrade on hard drives can be made.

I’ve read on other forums comments about Dell-certified vs non-certified drives. I’ve heard everything from 'you must use Dell certified drives otherwise you’re asking for trouble' to 'no problem with using other drives'. I won’t be using consumer drives, the WD Gold are enterprise drives

Stick to using Dell enterprise certified class of drives for reliable operation of your RAID array.

Robert Alakara

Dell EMC | Enterprise Services

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picardvskirk
1 Copper

RE: Non-certified hard drives (WD Gold 8TB/10TB drives) in R520 server

Hi Robert, thanks for your response.

The controller is PERC H710 and I'll be updating the firmware. There's no data on the server so no issues there.

We would buy Dell Enterprise Certified drives - if they weren't so expensive. We don't have unlimited funds. It's a tight budget and I've been tasked to find a cheaper solution. I have conveyed to my superiors that the Dell certified drives would be the safest solution but if we went with Dell drives it would only buy us about half the space that we require.

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theflash1932
5 Iridium

RE: Non-certified hard drives (WD Gold 8TB/10TB drives) in R520 server

Don't overpay for genuine Dell hardware by buying direct from Dell. Buy the exact same hardware from resellers/suppliers. You'll find the price difference no longer justifies buying potentially incompatible drives. The description of the WD Gold makes it sound like a safe bet, but there is no compatibility sheet that I can find for them that would indicate which enterprise storage systems they have tested them on. Kind of meaningless to claim wide ranging compatibility without stating which systems they have tested; no drive is universally compatible.

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