Apple Mac book does not provide much hard disk space so it requires external hard drives for storing the data. You can store data in CDs also but the thing is that it consumes a huge place to store Mega Bytes and Giga bytes of data. So Apple MAC needs a good support of external drives. But purchasing a hard is a very difficult task as there are a mass of factors involved in it. We have to consider the speed, portability of the hard drive, reliability of the hard drive. But durability is one of the biggest concerns when we choose an external hard drives. So we are trying to throw some light on this topic.



External hard drives mostly work for hardly 2 to 3 years. If you don’t work every day it can work for maximum for 3 years. How many years it will work perfectly it depends on the term Mean Time Before failure or Mean Time Between Failure that is MTBF. Desktop hard drives last longer than laptop hard drives. But it varies company to company. But on the other hand MTBF numbers are mainly conjecture and they are generally inaccurately very high. Consumers started as the failure rates were growing at a high rate. So the drive makers decided to change the method of measurement and switched to a different technique called Annualized Failure Rate (AFR) which evaluates the % of total drives made which will fail in a year for manufacturing defects. 0.73% AFR rate suggests is that 7,300 out of 1,000,000 drive can likely to create problems in years due to defects. But in reality, heavily use of external hard drives increases the chances of failures.

If someone is buying the hard drives with a special purpose like backing up photos, videos, or important files, he should buy it by seeing the brand name, and can pay more for it as the documents are very precious. These kinds of drives are very much durable and it works for quite a long time. But if someone is using the drives for storing movies, songs and other items which he can re download then he can opt for a cheap external hard drive.

Hard Drive Failure Rates updated on December 31, 2014

Name/Model Size    Number
of Drives
Average Age
in years
Failure Rate
95% Confidence
HGST Deskstar 7K2000
2.0 TB
4,641 3.9 1.1% 0.8% – 1.4%
HGST Deskstar 5K3000
3.0 TB 4,595 2.6 0.6% 0.4% – 0.9%
HGST Deskstar 7K3000
3.0 TB
1.4% – 3.4%
HGST Deskstar 5K4000
4.0 TB
1.8 0.9% 0.6% – 1.4%
HGST Megascale 4000
(HGST HMS5C4040ALE640)
4.0 TB
0.4 1.4% 1.0% – 2.0%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11
1.5 TB 306 4.7 23.5% 18.9% – 28.9%
Seagate Barracuda LP
1.5 TB 1,505 4.9 9.5% 8.1% – 11.1%
Seagate Barracuda 7200.14
3.0 TB 1,163 2.2 43.1% 40.8%-45.4%
Seagate Barracuda XT
3.0 TB 279 2.9 4.8% 2.6%-8.0%
Seagate Barracuda XT
4.0 TB 177 1.7 1.1% 0.1%-4.1%
Seagate Desktop HDD.15
4.0 TB 12,098 0.9 2.6% 2.3%-2.9%
Seagate 6 TB SATA 3.5
6.0TB 45 0.4 0.0% 0.0% -21.1%
Toshiba DT01ACA Series
3.0 TB 47 1.7 3.7% 0.4%-13.3%
Western Digital Red 3 TB
3.0 TB 859 0.9 6.9% 5%-9.3%
Western Digital 4 TB
4.0 TB 45 0.8 0.0% 0.0%-10%
Western Digital Red 6 TB
6.0 TB 270 0.1 3.1% 0.1%-17.1%



It is now easy to detect which hard drive to choose for MAC. Now a day on an average most of the hard drives are likely to give average space of 3-4 TB. Most people find that 4 TB is more than enough to store different items. But it is their personal choice to buy by seeing the capacity which they want. Seagate Backup plus Slim 1TB Portable External Hard Drive for Mac is one of the good solution it has 2 TB capacity and price is very less $109.99.

WD My Passport Ultra Portable External USB 3.0 Hard Drive is another good external hard drive for MAC. It comes with 500GB-2 TB to store the data. 1 TB price is near about $59.00.One can also choose WD My Passport Ultra Portable External USB 3.0 Hard Drive which comes with 500 GB- 1 TB storage capacities. 1 TB price is near about $69.99.Western Digital My Passport Ultra 2TB USB 3.0 Hard Drive, Titanium is one more solution.It comes with 500 GB- 2TB to store the data. 2 Tb price is almost $89.99.

Portability and design

There are some kinds of external drives like enterprise-class desktop drives, regular desktop drives, laptop-class portable drives, slim laptop-class portable drives, and flash drives. Enterprise-class desktop drives, regular desktop drives use 3.5″ hard drive mechanism and it is non-portable. They are huge so they cannot be carried in bags. So these are non-portable. Flash drives are tiny-sized and very much expensive. So if someone needs a portable hard drive with storage capacity at a affordable price, he will most likely pick a laptop-class drive with a 2.5″ hard drive mechanism inside.
Last but not least, if somebody wants backups which is automated and wireless they can opt for Apple AirPort Time Capsule. It is redesigned as fast 802.11ac wireless with the choice of a 2TB ($280) or 3TB ($350) hard drive.