Apple's Time Capsule: is its HDD really 'server grade'?
Pics suggest Mac maker's using desktop drives
Apple's Time Capsule, which went on sale last week, may not be quite what the Mac maker maintains it is, in the storage department at least.
Time Capsule is Apple's 802.11n Wi-Fi router with an integrated 500GB or 1TB "server-grade hard disk drive", to use Apple's words.
But when one buyer took his TimeCapsule apart, he found his machine contained a Hitachi Deskstar 1TB, a hard drive designed not for servers but for desktop computers:
NakedMac's TimeCapsule HDD: Hitachi Deskstar
You can see a full set of Time Capsule disassembly pictures at Nakedmac's Flikr site here, but for now here's another shot:
The drive in the Time Capsule may sport an Apple logo that implies it's a custom unit made especially for the company, but Hitachi's only 1TB Deskstar available to all is the 7K1000, which has the model number HDS721010KLA330 - the one on the HDD allegedly taken out of the TimeCapsule
The 7K1000 packs a 32MB cache and spins at 7200rpm. It's a fast drive, but not the sort of HDD usually found in servers.
Indeed, Hitachi offers a server-oriented version of the 7K1000, called the Ultrastar A7K1000. Its specs largely match those of the standard 7K1000, but where Hitachi states the A7K1000 is good for 24x7 availability, it makes no such claim about the Deskstar model.
A case of Apple being economic with the actualité?
Well, Hitachi itself notes that 7K1000 is suitable for applications including "networked storage servers", which is kind of what Time Capsule is, or could be claimed to be. And since the 7K1000 has essentially the same spec as the A7K1000, Apple could argue its choice means punters get a server drive spec at a lower price.
Hitachi's 24x7 rating for the A7K1000 turns out to be limited to "lower duty cycle environments in the enterprise storage hierarchy", so it's not like it's expected to take the thrashing that so many true server drives do.
Still, for many IT types, the phrase 'server grade', while lacking a standard definition, implies a more rugged product than Hitachi's Deskstar, however good a desktop hard drive that model is.
RE:Hitachi Deskstar and RE:server drives and server grade drives
Are you guys idiots? First of all Western Digital being as bad or worse then Fujitsu???????????
I am running a desktop with 4, yes 4 Raptor HDDs in it in a RAID 0+1 and i accidently broke the SATA connector for one of the drives off trying to hook it up blind and called WD for shlts and giggles to see how much a replace controller board would cost instead I waited NO TIME AT ALL to get someone on the phone after I made it through the IVR and once I told the guy on the other end what *I* had done and what I was looking for he said they would WARRANTY IT OUT!! How many other drive manufactures would do that? 2 weeks later brand new Raptor in my hands and in my computer. Problem solved and all it cost me was roughly $20 in S+H.
Now for the other knucklehead:
"It's hard ot find these beasties larger than 130 GB ... they invariably use 1.8 , 2 inch or 2.5 inch platters."
Erm say what?? Hard?? again 4 Raptors at 150GB each. And I believe they are 3.5 inch drives could be wrong though but I believe this link says it all:
Those look to be roughly 3.5 inches to me.
Next time think (and do research) before you open your gab.
/hate people who are idiots and talk before they think
The 'deskstar' is as it's name implies, designed for desktop use. That means on for typically 8 hours a day.
'Server' drives are designed to run 24/7.
TimeCapsule is clearly designed to be left on 24/7. I have no idea if it powers down the drive when not in use, but I would be *extremely* wary of trusting important data to a (particularly IBM) desktop drive. Before you argue it's a backup and you have another copy on the live system, lets pretend that you just lost your live system or want an old backup recovering. Still not important?
@ David Wiernicki - find your granny spectacles
Time to put on your granny glasses Wiernicki, as usual my truthful insights on the quality standards and the ruthless greediness of Apple's product managers was posted early Monday at "Apple has ALWAYS Cheated on Quality Components! "
I always new Apple Kool Aid Drinkers were stupid and in terminal denial, I had no idea that they were this blind too.
As a footnote to all this discussion - ANYONE who actually believes that Apple "designs" anything, rather than in reality finds a cheap supplier / manufacturer in the pacific rim with an already engineered product that will slap Apple's name on it, also believes in the Tooth Fairy and Santa Clause.
@Cutting to the real issue...
it pays to read the blurb Martin. Nowhere on the Apple publicity does it say "enterprise grade" so don't go making things up to bolster your argument that Apple lied.
The hitachi blurb says the drive is for use in network storage servers. So once again Apple did not lie.
Quibble about things that are misrepresented certainly - but all of your second paragraph quibble is misrepresentation.
Careful, you're in danger of using facts in a fanbois based argument.... you should know that is not allowed!
@Dan - i'd be interested to see what reviews you've read that say it's not a NAS device, exactly what else would you call a hard drive stored not in your local machine, but attached directly to your network and available to access remotely by machines?