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Seagate reveals a NASty side, tears wraps off WD Red copycat disk

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Seagate has introduced its own disk for filer-focussed network-attached storage (NAS) boxes, a year after rival Western Digital launched its own Red NAS drive.

The new Seagate spinner comes with NASworks software; it's clearly a startling coincidence that the WD Red's bundled software is called NASware.

The Red is a 1TB, 2TB or 3TB drive spinning in the 5,400-5,900rpm area; it uses WD's Intellipower; and it moves data at 145MB/sec. El Reg understands that the 3TB product is a four 750GB-platter drive.

Against this background, behold Seagate's NAS HDD: 2TB, 3TB or 4TB spinning at 7,200rpm and sustains a transfer rate of up to 180MB/sec.

The number of platters was not disclosed. Its external physical dimensions are the same as the Red and its weight is pretty similar to the Red drive: Seagate's 2TB disk weighs 535g, the others 610g, versus the Red's 635g. El Reg reckons the Seagate NAS HDD uses 1TB platters: four in the 3TB and 4TB drive models, and two in the 2TB product.

Other than that the interface and cache are the same in both competing products: 6Gbit/s SATA and 64MB. Both drives have a 1-million hour mean-time-before-failure rating and both have dual-plane balance technology.

It's surely a foregone conclusion that WD will bring out an updated Red device using terabyte platters, and so match the Seagate NAS HDD capacity-wise.

Seagate says its new drive, designed for NAS boxes capable of holding up to five drives, has received "strong support from nine NAS system partners, including ASUSTOR, D-Link, LenovoEMC, Synology Inc and Thecus Technology". QNAP is also bringing out a product using Seagate's new drive.

The NASworks firmware "supports error correction via customised error recovery controls, power management and vibration tolerance for optimal performance and reliability in a 1- to 5-bay solution".

Meanwhile, WD's NASware "balances the most important attributes of performance, power, and reliability in multiple drive environments. The unique algorithms in NASware optimize power and performance" and has "built in intelligent error recovery controls".

In other words, the NASworks product does pretty much the same thing as NASware.

Anandtech notes there is a fulsome NAS HDD product manual available [PDF]. ®

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