In my years as a video editor, I’ve gone through lots of hard drives. One thing that became a bit difficult as the drives piled up was keeping track of them all. Necessity being the mother of of invention, I cane up with a simple mechanism to handle this.
When I buy either a new hard drive or hard drive in an enclosure with a drive in it, write a number on it, and record the information about it in a easy to use spreadsheet.
Here’s the information I collect about each of the drives; drive number (the number written on it), brand, model & serial numbers, drive size (in GB), interface (SATA or PATA for internal drives, or USB/FireWire/eSATA for externals), the warranty expiry date, and the supplier: Where I purchased the drive from.
I do not really need to keep track of what I am using the drive for, or what it’s currently called because frequently I wipe and rename my “floating” drives for specific purposes, like delivering content to a client.
For drives in enclosures, I use the purchase date on the invoice as the beginning of the warranty date.
If you use other brand drives, you can probably Google up the relevant link pretty easily.
An additional thing one can do is to add an item in iCal to set an alarm to go off a month before the warranty is up to check the drive.
More enterprising users could adapt this to cover more than just hard drive to all devices they purchase.