Articles about Disk Drives

HP CTO Martin Fink

Former HPE CTO Fink retires retirement, returns to tech

Well, well, whaddya know? Meg Whitman announces Martin Fink’s retirement as CTO and HPE Labs top dog, where he evangelised the Machine and memristors, but the fabled techie was clearly not ready to swan off into a post-work life of shed-building and ocean cruises just yet. He's back in the industry and mad for it. Fink has …
Chris Mellor, 23 Jan 2017

Trumping free trade: Say 'King of Bankruptcy' Ross does end up in charge of US commerce

Storage Blockhead Say hello to Wilbur Ross, "King of Bankruptcy" and the likely next US Secretary of State for Commerce – the man charged with implementing President Trump's promise to bring home the jobs stolen by cheap labour countries using free trade policies. Suppose he has his minions look over the storage industry, what will they see? …
Chris Mellor, 23 Jan 2017
Zhenyuanlong suni fossil

XIV goes way of the dinosaurs as IBM nixes fourth-gen storage array

IBM is not going to develop a fourth-generation XIV storage array because an upcoming FlashSystem A9000R using 3D flash can be sold for the same cost as disk. XIV is the highly reliable, Moshe Yanai-designed array, which IBM bought in 2008 for a rumoured $300m. Unusually, the technology used clustered nodes, each using cheap …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jan 2017
A man holding a cup of coffee

OpenIO, blind nano-nodes and coffee cup detection

Interview In a story about ARM-powered, Ethernet-addressed, object storing disk drives, I said such drives couldn’t carry out image searches at a drive-level because they would be operating "blindfolded". OpenIO says “rubbish” to that in a blog it wrote (I exaggerate.) So I spoke to OpenIO’s co-founder and COO Marie Ponseel, suggesting …
Chris Mellor, 17 Jan 2017
Weightlifting, photo via Shutterstock

WD slims down SSD to squeeze into little Black drive range

WD has added an SSD card to its previously all-disk Black range. The Black PCIe SSD comes in 256GB asnd 512GB capacities and features an M.2 2280 format with an NVMe PCIe Gen3 x4 host connection. It is WD's third flash product using branding previously reserved for disk drives, joining the Blue and Green 2.5-inch SARA SSDs. …
Chris Mellor, 06 Jan 2017
Some of the Super Pressure Balloon. M. McCarthy, submitted to the ABC

2016 – the year 3D XPoint came down to earth from Planet Hype

Storage Review in 2016 Storage in 2016 saw its on-premises SAN/filer array heartland assaulted by the public cloud on the one hand, and hyper-converged and software-defined storage on the other. The now-classic dual-controller disk array went hybrid to keep storing primary data, but all-flash arrays are taking on that role and so the hybrids went …
Chris Mellor, 05 Jan 2017
Robot eye opens. Image via Shutterstock

Igneous ARM CPUs: What if they tossed the blindfold?

On Storage Igneous's Ethernet-accessed, ARM-driven disk drives provide a seriously large amount of collective CPU chops to its dataBox/dataRouter array but the poor little suckers work blindfolded. Why would I say that? Think about it like this: a data object, say a photo image, comes into the array to be stored and is split into 20 data …
Chris Mellor, 03 Jan 2017

SK Hynix and Seagate exploring flash hookup

+Comment SK Hynix has revealed it is thinking about creating a joint venture with Seagate focused on flash memory. A filing with the Korean regulatory authorities that was reported in The Korea Herald said: We are looking into various options, including setting up a joint venture with Seagate Technology PLC, to strengthen the mid and …
Chris Mellor, 19 Dec 2016
OpenIO_WD_HDD_with_ARM_board

Grab an ARMful: OpenIO's Scale-out storage with disk drive feel

OpenIO has launched its SLS-4U96 product, a box of 96 directly addressed drives offering an object-storage interface and per-drive scale-out granularity. The SLS-4U86 is a 4U box holding up to 96 vertically mounted 3.5-inch disk drives, providing up to 960TB of raw storage with 10TB drives and 1,152 TB with 12TB drives. The …
Chris Mellor, 19 Dec 2016
The Incredible Shrinking Man

Shrinkage!? But it's sooo big! More data won't leave storage biz proud

Analysis The enterprise storage market is in a period of data growth according to IDC-forcasted zettabyte heaven, right? Er, no, because it's it entered a recessionary period, with negative growth. Says IDC. Total factory revenue of $8.8bn was reported for the quarter, down 3.2 per cent down on the year while the number of …
Chris Mellor, 09 Dec 2016
WDC new products Dec 2016

WDC loads its belt-fed drive cannon, blasts out disks 'n' cards galore

Western Digital Corp wowed analysts with exec spiel and five – or was it six? – product announcements. We have helium gas-filled drives, a 3D TLC NAND microSD card, two SSDs and a promised furiously fast flash platform array overflowing with IOPS. We'll start with the rotating rust and an Ultrastar He12, 12TB helium-filled …
Chris Mellor, 08 Dec 2016
NASA_Ames_hyperwall_950

NASA's hyperwall wonderwall uses virtual flash SAN

Case study How do get fast parallel data access to 128 compute nodes doing simulation processing off a slow, although massively parallel access data set? You could employ flash cache burst buffering, as DDN might propose, or try out an NVMe flash drive-based virtual SAN, which is what NASA Ames did in a visualisation situation. NASA's …
Chris Mellor, 06 Dec 2016
shutterstock_gold

Datrium: $55m burning hole in its pocket and raring to go global

Datrium has gained $55m C-round funding to grow its business to global scale. The startup was founded in 2012 by Data Domain and VMware vets. Its DVX product is a 2-tier design, revealed in January this year, and involving controller and data services software running in from one to 32 accessing servers, each with at least …
Chris Mellor, 05 Dec 2016
Black hole - spaghetti visualisation. Artist's impression.  NASA/JPL-Caltech, CC BY-SA

Micron wheels out 'highest density' SATA SSD on the market

+Comment Micron has introduced a 5100 line of data centre flash drives and promises it will be the highest-density SATA SSD on the market. There are three models and they all use TLC (3bits/cell) 3D flash and have a 6Gbps SATA interface: 5100 ECO – 480GB, 960GB, 1.9TB, 3.84TB and (coming) 7.86TB 5100 PRO – 240GB, 480GB, 960GB, 3. …
Chris Mellor, 05 Dec 2016
Crystal ball. Pic: Shutterstock

Wikibon invokes the old gods to make six tech predictions for 2017

Analysis Wikibon's chief technology guy, David Floyer, has put out his top six disruptive tech tips for 2017, seeing that ARM and Open CAPI will separately grow at Intel's Xeon expense, the cloud at on-premises' Server SAN expense, and flash at disk drive's expense, while XPoint will be a 2017 dud. Here's his list: AWS will …
Chris Mellor, 21 Nov 2016

Lenovo intros monster disk box

Lenovo has announced the mother of all disk drive enclosures at SC16 – the D3284 JBOD, a 5U enclosure holding up to 84 3.5-inch disk and/or solid-state drives. The box has an upper and a lower section, each holding, we understand, 42 drives. You could combine 7,200rpm nearline SAS disk drives with SAS SSDs to provide a …
Chris Mellor, 16 Nov 2016
Huawei_XH320_server_node

Huawei hots up its high-density server line

Huawei has a new X6000 model in its FusionServer line of server cartridges stacked inside a rack chassis. You may not see these much, if at all, in the US, but they will feature in the rest of the world. The Chinese company’s server range includes: KunLun and TaiShan mission-critical servers FusionCube hyper-converged …
Chris Mellor, 15 Nov 2016
ActiveScale_P100_detail

Midi-archive box from WD stops at 19PB

WD has announced an ActiveScale P100 system for storing object data, scaling from 720TB to 19PB (raw), and forming an entry-level archive product tier well below the 672TB to 35PB Active Archive system. WD now has a Data Centre Systems business unit, DCS, which includes the SanDisk InfiniFlash and HGST Active Archive System …
Chris Mellor, 15 Nov 2016
Seagate_ClusterStor_L300

Gotta speed up HPC arrays. Flash or disk, flash or disk. Let's do both – Seagate

Seagate’s ClusterStor 300N storage array for high-performance computing is a hybrid flash/disk array, lifting sequential bandwidth by 33 per cent and small, random I/O by up to 1,200 per cent. The idea is that the 300N systems run mixed workloads much better than previous ClusterStor arrays, by using flash to accelerate IOs …
Chris Mellor, 14 Nov 2016
Speed

Iguazio: Made from Kia parts but faster than a Ferrari with 1,000 drivers

Backgrounder We introduced Iguazio in September. Assembled hacks were given a deep dive into the company at its Herzliya, Israel HQ this week. The name refers to the Iguazu falls in South America; it means big water, and we had a technology drenching, some of which I remembered when I came up gasping for air. The starting …
Chris Mellor, 10 Nov 2016
Infinidat_1U_tray

Leaner, meaner screamer from Infinidat dreamer

Infinidat is tweaking its Infinibox array design to increase its capacity. The present 3U drive trays and 2U controller enclosures will each become 1U trays, enabling an increase from 480 drives to 720 in a rack – a 67 per cent increase. These drive trays hold 60 vertically mounted disk drives. At Infinidat's Herzliya office …
Chris Mellor, 07 Nov 2016
Hitachi_FMD_DC2_detail

Enhanced XP7 plumps up flash while slimming dedupe

HPE's XP7 is an OEM'd Hitachi VSP array, which was announced in April 2014 as an update to the similar OEM'd XP. The XP7 gained flash media in September 2015, using Hitachi's Flash Module Drives, proprietary format SSDs. Hitachi Data Systems updated its VSP flash and hybrid flash/disk arrays in October. So now HPE has followed …
Chris Mellor, 31 Oct 2016
Vintage disk platters

Pluck-filled platter-stuff: Bold disk drive makers fatten up

Analysis Disk drives are getting more platters so they can be fattened up with more data. HDD electric motor maker Nidec thinks 3.5in nearline drives will increase their thickness from today's 1 to 2 inches so they can cram in more data. Seagate's 10TB, helium-filled, Enterprise Capacity drive is 1.028in (26.11mm) thick, the …
Chris Mellor, 31 Oct 2016

WD gets flash boom bang from SanDisk swallow

+Comment WD's disk and SanDisk-boosted flash sales boomed as overall revenues in its first fiscal 2017 quarter rose to $4.7bn, up 40.6 per cent on the year-ago $3.4bn. But it reported a net $366m loss. Why a loss? A year ago it made a profit of $283m on lower revenues. This time around there were charges associated with WD’s recent …
Chris Mellor, 27 Oct 2016
Bowler holds cricket ball. Photo by SHutterstock

Seagate bowls out fattened-up spinner

Seagate's sixth generation Enterprise Performance disk drive ups its capacity by 50 per cent to 900GB and increases data transfer speed past 300MB/sec. This is a small form factor or 2.5-inch drive spinning at 15,000rpm with 300GB, 600GB and 900GB capacity points.The prior fifth generation topped out at 600GB and its sustained …
Chris Mellor, 26 Oct 2016
Avalanche

Flash reaches the enterprise tipping point

Comment The use of disk drives to store performance data for enterprises is declining and, flash drives - SSDs - are taking their place. A wave of all-flash array (AFA) to disk array migration is starting to wash across data centres as generations of disk drive arrays give way to ones built with NAND flash drives. The tipping …
Chris Mellor, 20 Oct 2016
Isilon_Nitro_950

Isilon Nitro all-flash dragster filer to hit the streets in 2017

Dell EMC is launching the Isilon All-Flash system which is designed to handle extreme high-performance NAS workloads. It is the culmination of the Isilon Nitro development revealed at EMC World earlier this year. You start with a 4-node, 4U chassis with from 96TB to 924TB of capacity, 250,000 IOPS, and up to 15GB/sec of …
Chris Mellor, 19 Oct 2016
Boy with a backpack hides his eyes and cries. Pic by Shutterstock

No shoes for little Timmy, Mama needs a new 10TB hard drive

Seagate has announced six new Guardian Series disk drives for internal use in portables, desktops and gaming rigs, with BarraCuda and FireCuda branding and a variety of form factors. Here is the product list: 2.5-inch BarraCuda 7mm thick with 500GB, 1TB and 2TB capacities BarraCuda 15mm thick with 3TB, 4TB and 5TB …
Chris Mellor, 19 Oct 2016
Swarm servers

Flocking Dell! Caringo's Swarm storage software soars to version 9

Caringo has updated its Swarm object storage software and will flog the code on appliances based on Dell PowerEdge servers. Deployments of Caringo's object storage is used for applications such as bulk storage, analytics, archiving, backup, cloud storage and content distribution. The software provides NFS, SMB, S3, HDFS and …
Chris Mellor, 18 Oct 2016
Container-ship

VMware waves white flag: vSphere, vRealize, VSAN dock with Docker

VMworld Europe Containers are docking at this week's VMworld Europe Barcelona shindig – with VMware supporting containers in its compute, storage and management product set (vSphere, VSAN and vRealize) for production use. VMware is seemingly taking EMC's approach to disruptive technology by disrupting itself by its own hand: witness EMC …
Chris Mellor, 18 Oct 2016

Startup dusts off rent-a-box on-premises corpse, adds ARM muscle, cloud brains

Startup Igneous Systems has re-discovered and re-imagined the idea of customers renting an externally managed system on their premises, giving it an Internet of Things (IoT) and public cloud make-over. The new angles are that IoT devices can generate vast amounts of data which is difficult to send to a set of on-premises …
Chris Mellor, 12 Oct 2016
WD_My_Passport_950

WD gives My Passport spinning rust drives a lick of paint

WD has refeshed the design style of its portable USB 3.0 My Passport, My Passport for Mac and desktop My Book external disk drives, using colours and texture. We guess it has ambitions of competing more strongly with Seagate's designer-influenced LaCie brand. The design was worked on by fuseproject and the descriptive …
Chris Mellor, 12 Oct 2016
WD_Green_SSD

WD flashes first SanDisk drives: Blue and Green

WD has produced Blue and Green branded SATA SSDs, based on SanDisk technology, with these brands having been used for WD disk drives previously. The Green brand is for secondary storage, being reliable, cool and eco-friendly whilst Blue products are built for PC primary storage use. Other WD brand colours include Black for …
Chris Mellor, 12 Oct 2016
Micron 9100 NVMe HHHL SSD

Little top tech tip: Take care choosing your storage drives

Sysadmin Blog RAID is dead. Or maybe it's not. I think it might be off having a conversation with a cat in a box. Regardless of whether or not you use hardware RAID cards or HBAs and some kind of software, the idea of big boxes full of drives that store lots of things isn't going away any time soon. The drives you put in them, however, are …
Trevor Pott, 10 Oct 2016
Woman serves at beginning of tennis game. Photo by Shutterstock

Private equity ownership produces an improved Arcserve, apparently

Private equity-owned backup and DR house Arcserve has got itself a second generation UDP 8000 appliance sitting above the existing UDP 7000 series with more performance and capacity. Arcserve claims it is the most cost-effective and easily deployable purpose-built backup appliance (PBBA) in the data protection industry. CEO …
Chris Mellor, 06 Oct 2016
INfiniBox_on_side

Infinidat's big iron array gets data scrunching, no-footprint iSCSI

Big iron array vendor Infinidat has made its third major software release, adding compression, baked-in iSCSI support and enhanced array analytics. The company’s architecture has 3 controller nodes, which each can see all the drives, and eschews an all-flash design, relying instead on up 1.2TB - 3.2TB of DRAM caching, 24TB to …
Chris Mellor, 05 Oct 2016
Openio_CEO_Laurent_Denel

OpenIO wants to turn your spinning rust into object storage nodes

Frog object storage startup OpenIO is banging on with supporting Seagate’s Kinetic disk drives, and has certified its software on the drives in a Kinetic Plugfest. Ethernet-addressed Kinetic disk drives implement a Get, Put-based object storage facility at the drive level and, Seagate says, this allows accessing systems to …
Chris Mellor, 21 Sep 2016
Sauce over ice cream and brownies. Photo by Shutterstock

Avere builds on-premises object store all smothered in NAS

NAS accelerator and cloud storage gateway shop Avere has got itself its very own on-premises NAS system wrapped around an object storage core with a passage to the public cloud. Up until now, Avere has focussed on accelerating data access to on-premises filers and, latterly, cloud or object stores. Now it is providing its own …
Chris Mellor, 20 Sep 2016

Crashing PC sales don't stop HP Inc releasing two new ones

HP Inc has announced two new PC desktops: the miniscule and modular Elite Slice, as well as the new Toblerone of IT, Pavilion Wave, as a domestic entertainment machine. Elite Slice is HP’s smallest desktop. A 6.5" square, it stands only 1.38 inches tall, at least before you add the stackable modules, and is cooled by a 360- …
Banned

DCIG mid-market array guide: Why we left those companies out

Analysis Conversations with DCIG have revealed why seemingly obvious companies and their products were left out of a mid-range storage array buyers' report. DCIG analyst Ken Clipperton told us about the inclusion/exclusion criteria DCIG used when compiling its report. The initial criteria for selecting suppliers and products were: …
Chris Mellor, 23 Aug 2016
disk head crash

Air gap breached by disk drive noise

Video Researchers from Israel's Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Cyber Security Research Center have found a way to exfiltrate information from a PC using the noise created by hard disk drives. In work detailed here (PDF) at ArXiv, the researchers explain how they've created malware that “can generate acoustic emissions at …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Aug 2016
Seagate_Nytro_M2_XM1440_2TB

Seagate's flash advice: Don't buy the foundry when you can get the chips for cheap

Analysis As well as launching several new flash products, Seagate revealed the four pillars of its flash product strategy at the August 9-11 Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara. These were: Foundry independence Essential IP for system-wide use of flash Portfolio expansion Top-level cloud supplier Let's have a waltz around the …
Chris Mellor, 12 Aug 2016
Nimble_AF_series_bezel

Nimble shows that its all-flashers start small – and grow bigger

Nimble Storage has a new generation of hybrid Adaptive Flash arrays – the CS Thousand Series – plus a new all-flash array entry-point, the AF1000. The all-flash AF series was announced earlier this year, and Nimble has now added a cheaper AF1000 entry-level system. If you buy this, you can scale up and also out through the …
Chris Mellor, 11 Aug 2016
Pop art style illustration of man exclaiming "WHAT?" in shock/horror/bemusement. Illustration via Shutterstock

They kept that quiet: Toshiba unsheathes FlashBlade rival

+Comment Out of the blue Toshiba has launched an Atom-powered real-time, scale-out, compute-plus-flash analytics engine that is set to compete with Pure’s FlashBlade product. This announcement unveils the first real competition for Pure Storage's Big Data analytics box and comes from a most unlikely and surprising source, Toshiba not …
Chris Mellor, 10 Aug 2016
Slipway

Seagate scoops a revenue boost off back of its 8TB drives

Seagate has beaten its own preliminary fiscal 2016 fourth quarter estimate of $2.65bn revenues with a $2.7bn quarter. Still, this was 6.9 per cent less than a year ago, although 3.8 per cent up on the third quarter. Profits were $70m, 49 per cent less than a year ago but a whole, thumping lot better than last quarter's $21m …
Chris Mellor, 02 Aug 2016
Crowd watches fireworks at night in the field. Photo by Shutterstock

WD disk revenues spin slower as its flash fireworks go off

WDC beat its own better-than-expected preliminary results estimates with a $3.495bn quarter but swung to a $351m loss with fewer disk units sold. Layoffs are coming. Revenues for the fourth fiscal 2016 quarter, ended July 1, were 9.2 per cent higher than a year ago and 24.8 per cent up on the previous quarter. This quarter …
Chris Mellor, 29 Jul 2016
ClusterStor_L300_bezel_detail

Seagate's south UK factory hasn't a future but HDDs do (it hopes)

Seagate is closing down its factory in Havant on the south coast of the UK and axing 327 jobs. The redundancies are part of a renewed focus by the Californian giant on its disk drive technology roadmap to boost revenues and profitability. The Havant closure is part of the restructuring announced earlier this month, along with …
Chris Mellor, 25 Jul 2016

Boffins unveil 500TB/in2 disk. Yeah, it's made of chlorine. -196˚C, why?

Nano-tech scientists have managed to create the world’s smallest hard disk. The 500TB/inch2 disk can store a kilobyte of memory in a few tiny chlorine atoms, according to new research published in Nature Nanotechnology. Atomic memory is an attractive idea as only a few nanometres of space are needed to store a bit. A team of …
Katyanna Quach, 18 Jul 2016
NetBackup_5240

Veritas backup appliance sees red

Veritas has upgraded its 5200 deduplicating backup appliance line from the 5230 to the 5240, increasing both capacity and also speed through having faster processors. It has also lowered the energy consumption, increased the number of networking ports, and altered the wavy line scrolling across the bezel from yellow to red. …
Chris Mellor, 13 Jul 2016
Stranded_ships

Falling PC tide strands Seagate's disk drive boats. Will WDC follow?

Comment Seagate has announced its latest quarterly results will be unexpectedly good but there will be employee bloodshed. Another 6,500 layoffs on top of the 1,600 announced in June will take place. WDC did say it was cutting 507 US staff in June but these are the tip of an expected iceberg, which will see thousands of positions …
Chris Mellor, 12 Jul 2016