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Nathaniel CooperAug 13, 2019 9:30:00 AM1 min read

Server Lifespan: How Long Does It Takes?


If you've seen any of our blogs you can probably tell I love my Jeep. Nothing in my mind is better than a Jeep Wrangler, I want to keep it forever! But unfortunately, I know that it won't last forever. I'll have to replace the tires again, probably swap the transmission out, and whatever else comes up. Even if I fix all that it still won't last forever.

So what are those things that I need to do? How often will I need to do them? These same questions come up in conversations about servers. I've got this 24-Bay Server behind me. It's one of the common servers that we sell a lot of.

How Long Does The Server Should Last?

This particular model is loaded up with SSDs, in general, a good rule of thumb is to start switching drives out around 4 years. You may be able to stretch it a bit further with SSDs but with spinning hard drives, 4 years is where you will start to see actual hardware failures. That's the first thing you want to swap out.

Servers tend to last anywhere from 5-8 years. Most people tend to start looking to swap their servers out around the 5-year mark but you don't have to, especially depending on your physical environment. For example, I had a client in Santa Monica that always kept their windows open because it's beautiful there near the beach. Keeping the window cracked allowed a lot of saline into the office which built up in the server and killed it after about three and a half years! Now that's a rare situation!

But if you're sticking a server in an environment that is clean, generally it will last 5-8 years. I would encourage looking at swapping out drives before then. Most people want to by then because about 4 years in, the drive you bought then seems like a thumb drive.

This is why it's so important that you work with a vendor that makes it simple for you to swap out drives and doesn't force you to play the "You can only use our drives that are 4X the cost" game because that will really bite you when it does become time to swap outdrives.


Nathaniel Cooper

As Chief Operating Officer of ProMAX Systems, Nathaniel Cooper, runs ProMAX Systems day to day operations. Cooper has been working with Storage, Backup and Media Management for video and creative professionals since 2001. Cooper has lead the design and deployment of some of the largest media systems in the world including a range of customers from NFL, MLB & NBA teams, US Military operations, and many of the worlds largest PR agencies and consumer brands. Cooper has spent the last 9 years as part of the ProMAX team and specializes in translating complex technical issues and options into easily understandable concepts.