Western Digital offers hard drive warranty upgrade

No one's happy with the fact that major hard drive manufacturers have dropped the warranties on standard hard drives down to one year, but now it looks like Western Digital will be giving consumers the option of buying a three year warranty. The Inquirer is reporting that upgrading a WD drive's one year warranty to three years will cost you $19.95.

$20 for a warranty upgrade seems reasonable, until you check the price difference between WD's "BB" and "JB" hard drives. BB drives carry the now standard one year warranty and have a 2MB of cache; they're the ones eligible for the warranty upgrade. JB drives, however, feature an 8MB cache, and retain WD's original three year warranty because they're considered "Special Edition" drives. Online, the price difference between the two families of drives is generally less than $20, with the only caveat being that JB availability for drives under 80GB seems to be much more limited than for larger drives.

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