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WD Red 6TB Retested - Performance Restored

Subject: Storage
Manufacturer: Western Digital

Introduction and Test System Setup

A while ago, in our review of the WD Red 6TB HDD, we noted an issue with the performance of queued commands. This could potentially impact the performance of those drives in multithreaded usage scenarios. While Western Digital acted quickly to get updated drives into the supply chain, some of the first orders might have been shipped unpatched drives. To be clear, an unpatched 5TB or 6TB Red still performs well, just not as well as it *could* perform with the corrected firmware installed.

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We received updated samples from WD, as well as applying a firmware update to the samples used in our original review. We were able to confirm that the update does in fact work, and brings a WD60EFRX-68MYMN0 to the identical and improved performance characteristics of a WD60EFRX-68MYMN1 (note the last digit). In this article we will briefly clarify those performance differences, now that we have data more consistent with the vast majority of 5 and 6TB Reds that are out in the wild.

Test System Setup

We currently employ a pair of testbeds. A newer ASUS P8Z77-V Pro/Thunderbolt and an ASUS Z87-PRO. Storage performance variance between both boards has been deemed negligible.

PC Perspective would like to thank ASUS, Corsair, and Kingston for supplying some of the components of our test rigs. 

 
Hard Drive Test System Setup
CPU Intel Core i7-4770K
Motherboard ASUS P8Z77-V Pro/TB / ASUS Z87-PRO
Memory Kingston HyperX 4GB DDR3-2133 CL9
Hard Drive G.Skill 32GB SLC SSD
Sound Card N/A
Video Card Intel® HD Graphics 4600
Video Drivers Intel
Power Supply Corsair CMPSU-650TX
Operating System Windows 8.1 X64 (Update 1)
  • PCMark Vantage and 7
  • Yapt
  • IOMeter
  • HDTach *omitted due to incompatibility with >2TB devices*
  • HDTune
  • PCPer File Copy Test

Read on for the updated performance figures of the WD 6TB Red.


October 3, 2014 | 04:04 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

So what is your verdict? Does this get a gold or silver award?

October 3, 2014 | 06:24 PM - Posted by Baale sabiti

its your view no wonder!

October 3, 2014 | 08:59 PM - Posted by Lala (not verified)

I've just bought one of these drives and checked the WD support website. There's no mention of the firmware update.

Allyn, could you please post a link to the firmware update, or could someone point me in the right direction.

Thanks

October 3, 2014 | 11:58 PM - Posted by Sonic4Spuds

Check the link at the end of the story, I'm assuming that would be helpful to you.

October 4, 2014 | 07:05 PM - Posted by Lala (not verified)

Thanks, I got pretty much all the way to the end, but missed that last part.

October 3, 2014 | 11:59 PM - Posted by Sonic4Spuds

I have to say I like the new chart style Allyn!

October 6, 2014 | 12:11 PM - Posted by Allyn Malventano

Thanks! Going for a cleaner look since some of our upcoming testing is going to present a lot more data.

October 23, 2014 | 10:46 AM - Posted by Ive (not verified)

Any idea if this firmware is applicable to the 5TB reds also? I understand it wasn't tested along with the 6TB and 4TB-Pro reds, but given they both had NASWare 3.0, I was hopping it would apply to the 5TB reds.

October 29, 2014 | 04:51 PM - Posted by Allyn Malventano

It should, and the model number convention should be similar as well.

November 3, 2014 | 06:01 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I have a case open with WD for weeks and they are stalling to send the firmware. Last contact from them was 10 days ago. Don't know why they simple don't put the firmware on their website.

November 19, 2014 | 09:04 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It took more than a month but I finally got the file.

April 19, 2015 | 04:14 AM - Posted by grim (not verified)

Can someone please share the new firmware.

Wd support gets 1 million thumbs down by me, stalling communication for weeks with no end in sight.

Firmware update 68MYMN1 for WD60EFRX-68MYMN0

TIA

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