Friday, October 7, 2011

Samsung Story Station 2TB review - a cautionary tale

Last week I asked on twitter about the best harddrive available. I have been out of the whole computer hardware loop for a while I thought I would ask. Normally I would buy Seagate, but was told that their drives reliability has dropped since they bought Maxtor (ugh). I was advised that Samsung harddrives were the way to go by a friend who works in networking. Surely they can't be wrong? So I ordered the 2TB Samsung Story. It was priced only £10 more than the equivalent Seagate, and it looked downright sexy.

Yesterday evening I finally got my hands on the Story. It certainly looks like a great external drive, but who cares about the looks when what's important is the reliability and performance. I plugged it in and started moving my films, music and maps from my laptop onto the drive. I didn't measure the speed, but it wasn't slow. So for the next three hours, I started moving more crap onto the drive. 100GB later, I felt confident that I could start trusting it by moving some pictures too.

All hell broke lose.

I was watching a film on my telly. Despite the loud TV volume, I started hearing a loud clicking sound. Immediately I looked at my PS3 expecting to see a YLOD or something, but after listening carefully I found that it was coming from the new Samsung drive. I immediately turned it off and tried connecting again. No loud clicks this time, but my PC would not see it. I rebooted by PC just in case and still nothing happened. Eventually a drive letter came up and Windows urged me to format the drive. Distressed I connected the drive to my partner's Macbook Air, and even Apple's finest would not see it.

The Samsung drive was dead.

It lasted from 7.15 pm 6 October 2011 to 12.15 am 7 October 2011.

So that's it. That's my review of the Samsung Story 2TB. It's a piece of crap that does not work. In fact looking back at it now, I am glad it crapped out so early. Imagined if I used it for a week, moving more of my precious irreplaceable stuff on it, only for it to die on me. I think I would probably launch a lawsuit or something. I am now faced with the dilemma of returning this dreadful drive to Amazon, along with whatever personal data on it, and trust that they or Samsung dispose of it properly, or keep the broken drive and write off the £80 I paid for it.

Rather than sleeping, I am actually in the process of recovering my files from my laptop. Thanks a lot Samsung. You make great TVs, smartphones, world tallest buildings and even memory cards, but I would never trust my data on one of your sorry harddrives ever again.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

i agree that the samsung 2t external is nothing more than a paper weight i have had to format it once now it is requesting the same to access it, no wonder there are now contact tabs on the Samsung Australia site as they are aware of the shit they sell consumers, so if your offered one for nothing, think about it - its over priced for the piece of shit it is , goodnight god bless.

AlanKipper said...

same happened to me, but it lasted a bit longer. Always had problems though but i think it's finally died.

Anonymous said...

I don't like Samsung drives either, they always seem to break faster than any other drive. I usually try and stick with Western Digital.

But the most important aspect of this is that no hard drive will last, every single hard drive in the world will break at some point. The hard drive you're reading this on will break at some point, that's guaranteed. It's not a question of if, it's a question of when. It could be today, or next month, or in 3 years. It could be anytime so expect it to happen anytime.

Keep that in mind and you can't go wrong. You should never move files onto a single hard drive and expect them to be safe. You should always have a backup. The most ideal way is to keep files on the internal hard drives and then make backups onto USB drives. If internal space is not sufficient, then at least have two USB drives. One is never enough, it will break and then you're stuck.

Manufacturers do provide an expected lifespan of the drive but faults do occur at any time, even if the drive is new, and the manufacturer is only responsible for replacing the drive itself (if under warranty), not recovering any data you lost because you didn't have a backup. The drive belongs to the manufacturer but your data belongs to you, it's your responsibility.

If you want to prevent permanent data loss, make sure you have a backup. Do it now.

Phil Saunders said...

I am currently running six of these drives, (one 2tb and five 1.5tb) and can honestly say that I have not had a single problem with them at all, first one has been up and running for over two years now, maybe I am just the lucky one :-)

Les Kitchen said...

Like Phil Saunders, I've had good experience with
the Samsung Story drives. I've had five of the
2TB drives working happily for over a year. Similarly
good experience with Samsung laptop drives: one's
still going after ten years. Western Digital are a good
brand, but I've had a couple of their drives fail early.

I don't think you can draw definite conclusions from
your own individual experience. Even with reputable brands you can get variation in manufacturing and sourcing.

I agree with Anonymous: Whatever brand of drive
you have, backups are essential, preferrably off-site.

Matthew Huxford said...

Partitioned 1.5TB Story Station used as Time Machine backup and storage for films. 3 years and counting and not one issue. Am looking to buy another one in the near future.

Mr. Pop said...

I have used a model like this since 3 years ago. No problems occurred during this period. Today my cleaning lady knocked him off the table directly on the hard ground. No mats to cushion the fall. Unbelievably the device is ok!, No data was lost, at least that I noticed. I believe you gave bad luck with your drive, it happens to everyone unfortunately.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately after scouring the internet for a solution, it appears this is a common fault with the 2Tb drives but not so with the 1.5Tb.

Im not sure what the exact prob is though as I can still see and access my files when plugged into my TV but not through the computer or PS3 so it looks more like a software issue not a physical drive issue.

Any tech advice would be greatly appreciated

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately after scouring the internet for a solution, it appears this is a common fault with the 2Tb drives but not so with the 1.5Tb.

Im not sure what the exact prob is though as I can still see and access my files when plugged into my TV but not through the computer or PS3 so it looks more like a software issue not a physical drive issue.

Any tech advice would be greatly appreciated

Anonymous said...

I bought two of these, both 2TB. Mainly because they had the capacity and they looked pretty sexy. THEY DON'T WORK. First one lasted about 4 weeks and the clicking started, I had a lot of stuff on it, photos, videos etc. Lost, gone, kaput. This one was connected to my windows laptop. The second one was formatted for my Mac Mini and I stored some more pics and generally used it as a backup. It lasted about a year and was probably turned on 2-3 times in that year (I'm not the best at backing up) I got the stuff off this one (I hope I got it all) and formatted it for windows. Put a whole host of videos on it, then bam! the clicking started and I have lost more than half of the files. THEY ARE SH*T. BUYER BEWARE AND STAY AWAY.