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Articles about Hard Disk Drives

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Do you think spinning rust eats flash's dust? Join the hard drive daddies club

Disk drive makers have joined forces in a desperate bid to keep disk sales up and fend off the flash threat. Western Digital, HGST, Seagate and Toshiba have formed the Storage Products Association to provide "a forum to educate and advocate about the role of hard disk drives (HDDs) and Solid State Hybrid Drives (SSHDs) in …
Chris Mellor, 14 Aug 2013
Disk Drives

Every SECOND there are EIGHT more Seagate drives in the world

Seagate boasts that it has shipped a billion drives in just four years after taking nearly three decades to build its previous billion. The company shipped its first billionth disk in 2008; its inaugural product, the 5MB ST-506, hit the market in 1980. Now Seagate's factories - busy spewing drives to a world enthusiastically …
Chris Mellor, 13 Mar 2013
channel

Thai floods halt WD hard disk fabs

Western Digital has temporarily suspended disk drive-related production in its Thailand sites close to Bangkok due to severe flooding. Flooding in Thailand is sparking transportation and utility infrastructure headaches with some supply facilities and peoples' homes inundated. WD has some 37,000 employees in its Thai facilities …
Chris Mellor, 12 Oct 2011
wd_thai_lake_3_small

Hard disk drive prices quick to rise, slow to fall

The cost of hard disk drives remained reassuringly expensive in the opening four months of this year despite product availability improving. Long gone are the tales of a declining HDD sector hit by product shortages - sales through distribution were up 36 per cent and 78 per cent in Western Europe and the UK respectively from …
Paul Kunert, 29 May 2012

WD mixes flash-disk cocktail in Vegas, lets clients feel up models

WD is sending out samples of its 500GB and 1TB hybrid flash hard disk drives to OEM customers and showcasing them at CES in Las Vegas. According to an Engadget report WD is sampling two hybrid HDDS with its OEMs: A 500GB 2.5-inch model with a 5mm z-height and 24GB of NAND, called the WD5000M13K A 1TB 2.5-inch drive with a 7mm …
Chris Mellor, 10 Jan 2013
globalisation

Flood-hit Thai disk fabs to pour out 140m drives

The production of hard disk drives is nearing full capacity after flooding last year in Thailand sent shockwaves through the supply chain, with output set to reach around 80 per cent of pre-flood levels. A Digitimes report, citing industry sources, claimed that production would increase to somewhere between 140 and 145 million …
Phil Muncaster, 24 Feb 2012
Seagate 3TB Barracuda XT

Seagate takes 7.2k notebook drives out back - and shoots them

A momentous moment: Seagate will end production of its Momentus 7,200rpm 2.5in disk-only drives. The storage giant will stop making the gear by the end of this year to focus on drives mixed with flash memory, although it will continue to pump out 5,400rpm disks for cheap laptops. “We are going stop building our notebook 7, …
Chris Mellor, 04 Mar 2013

Microsoft's Windows Azure Plan B: A hard drive, a courier and a data-centre monkey

Microsoft, Amazon and Apple have spent tens of billions of dollars rolling out state-of-the art data centres over the past few years. These companies are building massive facilities housing thousands of servers with dedicated fibre and Ethernet connections that shunt tens of gigabytes per second. But when customers are …
Gavin Clarke, 05 Nov 2013
wd_thai_lake_1_small

World may be short 70 MILLION disk drives

Tied in a strangling knot by the Thai floods, the world could be shy of 70 million disk drives this quarter, sending retail prices rocketing, limiting PC supplies and creating an opening for flash drives. Taiwanese manufacturers in the PC supply chain reckon we will see 110 to 130 million hard disk drives (HDD) this quarter …
Chris Mellor, 28 Nov 2011

Boffins say flash disk demands new RAID designs

Solid state disks (SSDs) are wonderfully fast, but every time you write to them, the semiconductors involved degrade just a little, a property that means you swap them into established storage rigs at your peril. That's the conclusion of a new paper, “Stochastic Analysis on RAID Reliability for Solid-State Drives” from a pair of …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Apr 2013
server room

Race to super-slim Ultrabooks: More ultra-thin hybrid drives on way

WD is developing thin and ultra-thin hybrid hard disk drives for the Ultrabooks market with a likely transition to energy-assisted recording in 2015 – enabling 1TB 2.5-inch disk drive platters. This was revealed through analyst briefings by WD CEO John Coyne and CFO Wolfgang Nickl, and we have Stifel Nicolaus' Aaron Rakers to …
Chris Mellor, 02 Aug 2012
chart

OCZ flashes its cache at hard drives

Hard disk drives are getting a caching flash wrapper if OCZ has its way. Watch out for this SSD supplier's Synapse caching flasher. Not content with the RevoDrive Hybrid, a PCIe card containing a flash memory store and DataPlex software to manage the on-card hard drive, OCZ has revved its cocktail of components and crafted a new …
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2011
graph up

Disk fab floods rinse $1bn off Intel's Q4 revenue

Chip maker Intel has slashed its final quarter outlook, admitting it will fall short of the company's previous forecast due to a hard drive supply shortage - sparked by flooding in Thai disk factories. The vendor said it now expects to bank Q4 revenue of about $13.7bn (£8.7bn), compared to an earlier prediction of $14.7bn for …
Kelly Fiveash, 12 Dec 2011
homeless man with sign

SanDisk daddy: Flash to 'checkmate' hard drives by 2020

Although some industry observers – as The Reg recently noted – say that flash memory is approaching a technical brick wall, the cofounder and former CEO and chairman of SanDisk sees things differently. "Industry experts – even the best ones – are often shortsighted, and sometimes outright wrong," said Eli Harari at ISSCC on …
Rik Myslewski, 22 Feb 2012
wd_thai_lake_1_small

Disk fab output pumping up, prices 'to stay high and dry'

Demand for hard disk drives will outstrip supply until at least the middle of 2012, analysts at IHS reckon, as a result of the deadly Thai factory floods that dented drive production. Disk assembly rates will creep up during 2012 but prices will remain high. Shipments of hard drives are expected to rise in every quarter, year-on …
Anna Leach, 15 Feb 2012
SanDisks fifth generation 128Gbit TLC die

HP breaks ranks: Foresees data ARCHIVING on Flash

An unearthed HP presentation session shows HP is envisaging cold data storage, archiving, using flash. Here’s the TB4642 - Enabling the flash transformed data centre - session description extract; What will soon further ramp the adoption of flash are the superior storage densities offered by solid state drives as they expand to …
Chris Mellor, 30 May 2014
DVD it in many colours

HP also jacks up disk prices in Thai flood wake

We thought EMC was the first major enterprise supplier to raise disk drive prices after the Thailand floods. Not so. HP sent out a letter - pictured here - last month saying it was being forced to increase prices as a result of the hard drive shortage caused by the deadly floods in Thailand. Many of the country's disk assembling …
Chris Mellor, 20 Dec 2011
channel

Marvell updates hybrid NAND/disk controller

Hot on the heels of its 9145 PCIe flash controller component, Marvell is launching a new controller to make building hybrid drives, spinning disk plus NAND flash, a lot easier. Hybrid drives pair NAND flash with spinning disks to combine NAND speed with disk capacity and low cost/GB. Seagate provides its Momentum XT drive with …
Chris Mellor, 09 Jan 2012
Sun has yet to supply us with a picture of the Constellation

Celebrating the 55th anniversary of the hard disk

All anniversaries are special, and so is this one. It's particularly special because a billion or more people have been and are being affected by it every day. They switch on their PCs and take advantage of Intel processors and Microsoft's Windows, or Mac OS, thinking nothing of it. But before these, and providing a foundation …
Chris Mellor, 16 Sep 2011
OpenStack Summit

Disks with Ethernet ports? Throw in some flash and you've got yourself a HGST p-a-r-t-y

Western Digital Corp subsidiary HGST is developing Ethernet-connected drives for OpenStack users – and they won't require any application software changes, apparently. The architecture of such a product will be demonstrated by HGST at the OpenStack Summit, to take place between 12 and 16 May in Atlanta, GA. The presentation …
Chris Mellor, 08 May 2014
hitahi t7k500 hard disk drive

Sputtering storage space portends poorly for PCs

With sales of most hard drives down, the much-anticipated rebound of the PC market looks to remain on hold for the moment. Research firm IHS is reporting that shipments of storage drives for use in PCs fell over the course of the year with hard disk drives and optical drives continuing to fade while solid-state drive shipments …
Shaun Nichols, 05 Feb 2014
Avere schematic diagram

Avere gets edgy, speeds up flash flier filer

Avere produces clusterable FXT filer accelerators using tiering across RAM, Flash/SSD, fast SAS disk, and nearline SATA/SAS disks to accelerate access to file data from a filer behind it. Edge filers take this model further – making traditional filers look like slow, high-capacity data stores. Edge filers can store files up in …
Chris Mellor, 07 Mar 2014
channel

WD and Xyratex discuss future tech roadmap for disk drives

It seems the disk drive industry has decided which future technology to use and in which order, judging by recent Western Digital and Xyratex discussions with investment analysts. The current perpendicular magnetic recording technology (PMR) is running out of steam as continued size reductions in the magnetised bit area lead to …
Chris Mellor, 05 Nov 2010

Tegile adds dash of disk to flash, hopes to taste cash

Tegile has tossed out two more flash-boosted storage arrays into the market, chasing the hybrid dream that flash and disk is better than flash alone because you get cheap capacity and solid state speed. Its first hybrid array product, the Zebi HA2100 was announced in June, with DRAM and flash used as a 2-tier cache atop a …
Chris Mellor, 16 Aug 2012
cable

WD bigshots spin superfast disk roadmap

Western Digital's disk drive roadmap has hybrids and tech transitions coming to shrink I/O latency and regain fast areal density growth. At an exec summit in Vienna on 8 May, WD discussed coming hard disk drive (HDD) technologies without pre-announcing products and with some unattributable thoughts around hybrid flash and hard …
Chris Mellor, 09 May 2012
graph up

Pure Storage to dethrone 'evil' hard disk

The problems with networked storage is the hard drive. It's evil – nothing can be done to fix its primary latency and seek problems except by giving up on them and going flash. That's Pure Storage's preferred option, and it's betting the farm on it. The company is a stealth-mode startup with impressive credentials and a simple …
Chris Mellor, 02 May 2011
Toshiba MK6465GSX

Toshiba: Our 2.5-incher does the same job as a 3.5-incher

Toshiba sees life in fast 2.5-inch drives yet, and has followed close on HGST's heels by announcing a 600GB model spinning at 15,000rpm. There are also 300GB and 450GB capacity points in this 24 x7 operation enterprise drive product set. The two drives are pretty similar. Toshiba's AL13SXB has a 15mm z-height, meaning we …
Chris Mellor, 10 Mar 2014
Angry old man

We're not on the Gartner Magic Quadrant? Just imagine our concern, says HDS

Facing up to exclusion from Gartner’s all-flash array Magic Quadrant, Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has come out fighting. HDS ships an all-flash array (AFA) in the form of Hitachi Accelerated Flash Modules inside its VSP array, thus gaining access to all its VSP data management features. Yet this falls foul of Gartner’s AFA …
Chris Mellor, 03 Sep 2014
New HP logo

HP's top-end array just TOPPED ITSELF

HP has announced the XP7, the successor to the high-end XP array. The XP, or P9500, is an OEM version of Hitachi's VSP array and Hitachi has announced the VSP G1000 follow-on product, which HP has manufactured as the XP7. HP says it is the "highest performing, full-featured, enterprise-class disk array." That means it's better …
Chris Mellor, 23 Apr 2014
cloud

Captain Marvell flops out mighty flash/disk hybrid controller

Hoping to help bring affordable flash acceleration to hard disk drives, Marvell has crafted a hybrid controller that makes an SSD and hard drive duo look like a single storage pool to host systems. Solid state drives (SSD) are very expensive compared to hard disk drives (HDD) and, so far, only Seagate has tried building an …
Chris Mellor, 04 Jan 2011
channel

What system builders need to know about solid state drives

If you are building systems using solid state drives (SSDs), you need rock-solid reliability and performance – and you won't get it from consumer-grade flash. But how do you know if the drives you choose are enterprise-grade? A supplier may say its SSD is enterprise quality but can you be sure this marketing claim is true? You …
Chris Mellor, 28 Mar 2012
Seagate_NAS_Pro

Seagate chances ARM with NAS boxes for the SOHO crowd

Small Office Home Office (that's SOHO to you) and SME NAS supplier Seagate, which also makes hard disk drives and SSDs, has launched a pair of ARM-based and Atom-based desktop 2- to 6-slot filers with a set of minor productivity apps and remote access. The Seagate NAS line is for use by up to 25 employees, has from two to four …
Chris Mellor, 16 Jul 2014
IMFT 25nm Flash die

Eat our dust, spinning rust: In 5 years, it'll be all flash all the time

El Reg’s futorologists have looked into the data centre storage area and foresee the banishment of disk drive spindles starting within five years. Put bluntly, disks suck. They are slow, they fail, they suck up electricity and floorspace. CIOs of companies with performance-focussed data centres don’t want disks. They look at all …
Chris Mellor, 15 Nov 2013
Tegile Zebi chassis

Tegile's tech trajectory: All-flash function in hybrid mutant body

Hybrid array startup Tegile has a new system coming that will provide all-flash array functionality within its hybrid architecture. CTO Rajesh Nair said two new systems were coming: one in a couple of months and a second one by the end of 2014. He provided some details. The first one will be a companion to the existing high-end …
Chris Mellor, 11 Mar 2014
globalisation

Tosh intros largest smallest disk

Toshiba, the effective monopoly supplier of 1.8-inch hard disk drives (HDD), has announced a 220GB tiny whopper. IDC says Tosh supplied more than 92 per cent of all the 1.8-inch drives shipped in the third quarter of last year. This sector of the HDD market may have been abandoned or avoided by the other three main drive …
Chris Mellor, 25 Jan 2011
Why did you click to see the picture with images turned off

Imation's $120m baby delivers NST6000 hybrid storage mutant

Scalable storage outfit Imation's Nexsan unit has launched an uprated cached hybrid flash/disk drive array with a Gen 3 operating system: NestOS 3.0. Nexsan, a purveyor of primary and Assureon archival data storage arrays that failed to IPO several times, was bought by Imation on January for $120m. The NST6000 and older NST5000 …
Chris Mellor, 20 Aug 2013
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Samsung brings out superskinny flash drives for ultrabooks

Samsung is shipping mini-Serial ATA interface solid state drives for ultrabooks, the attempt by Intel to spark a Windows equivalent of MacBook Air thin notebooks into being. It has extended its PM830 range of 2Xnm class, 2-bit multi-level cell SSDs, with their 6Gbit/s SATA interface and 128, 256, and 512GB capacity points, by …
Chris Mellor, 05 Dec 2011
Not_ABBA

Take a chance on EMC: Bursts of aBBa spin up cloudy HPC goodness

EMC has developed a burst buffer technology that transforms its VNX mid-range enterprise storage into an HPC-class storage resource, with the aBBa cache providing the raw speed and the VNX the capacity. High-performance computing (HPC) has such enormous computing grunt that enterprise arrays, like VNX, can't keep up with either …
Chris Mellor, 25 Jun 2014
channel

Apple signals disk free notebooks way to go

Apple's new MacBook Air is as cheap as the MacBook at £849, signalling the end of premium pricing for Apple's slim hinged flash slab. When it was introduced two years ago the MacBook Air was priced pretty high but it had a great spec. It still does but the smaller 11-inch screen model is now priced like the entry level MacBook. …
Chris Mellor, 21 Oct 2010
WOS7000 Archive Node

DDN unveils Wizard of WOS: Not beardy Steve – object storage, silly

DataDirect Networks has extended its WOS object storage product with a global data protection facility and an archival node, claiming WOS now supports the entire unstructured data lifecycle. The new release is called WOS 360 and it builds on the WOS 3.0 ObjectAssure erasure coding technology to provide Global ObjectAssure. The …
Chris Mellor, 06 Mar 2014
globalisation

WD works on hybrid drives

Western Digital is working on developing a hybrid drive combining spinning disk and solid state storage, along the lines of Seagate's Momentus XT. CEO John Coyne mentioned this in the earnings call for WD's second fiscal 2011 quarter, saying: "We also continue to evaluate the opportunity to combine rotating magnetic storage with …
Chris Mellor, 07 Mar 2011
Arlington Cemetery

DEATH of the desktop: Virtual systems could KILL OFF the biz PC

The business PC desktop is facing death by a thousand VDI cuts augmented by a BYOD bashing. Her are just a few reasons to predict the death of the business desktop : EMC’s XtremIO all-flash array, twinned with VMware View or Citrix Xen Desktop and backend VNX arrays, can support 7,000 or more virtual desktops All-flash …
Chris Mellor, 13 Nov 2013
HGST 5K1500

Our new 1.5TB lappie drive isn't thick, it's just the densest - HGST

Western Digital subsidiary HGST is touting a 1.5TB notebook drive with three platters inside a standard 9.5mm-thick 2.5in form factor. HGST claims the drive has the highest storage density of any hard disk drive available, in terms of megabytes per cubic millimetre. Generally 9.5mm-tall, 2.5in drives have two platters, not three …
Chris Mellor, 21 May 2013

Seagate: Storage industry ill-prepared for onrushing big data tsunami

The world is producing such a rapidly surging amount of data that the storage industry – both solid-state drives (SSDs) and hard-disk drives (HDDs) – will be hard-pressed to keep up with demand, says one storage-industry insider. "You can take that as a crisis; we see it as an opportunity," HDD manufacturer Seagate's SVP in …
Rik Myslewski, 14 Aug 2013

Facebook Frankenphoto morgue will store cold, dead selfies FOREVER

The term “cold storage” has something of the morgue about it. Dead bodies in refrigerated cabinets, what an image. Facebook is backing the use of a photo morgue, the use of cold storage for old pix. Old photos will have low individual access rates but when access is wanted it is wanted at faster speeds than a tape library could …
Chris Mellor, 24 Sep 2013
Storage step 5

Loved-up shared storage silos in SHOCK SPLIT!

A previously uniform shared storage architecture is splintering apart as server virtualisation, dedupe, flash and the cloud shatter the old order – giving us five steps to heaven, or hell, depending on your viewpoint. The old shared storage order was a bunch of servers linked across a network to a storage area network (SAN) or …
Chris Mellor, 29 May 2014
arrow pointing up

SSDs choked by crummy disk interfaces

A flash device that can put out 100,000 IOPS shouldn't be crippled by a disk interface geared to dealing with the 200 or so IOPS delivered by individual slow hard disk drives. Disk drives suffer from the wait before the read head is positioned over the target track; 11msecs for a random read and 13msecs for a random write on …
Chris Mellor, 07 Dec 2011

Seagate: Fibre Channel? RAID? SATA? File System? All RUBBISH

Seagate is building hard disk drives with a direct Ethernet interface and object-style API access for scalable object stores, a plan which - if it works - would destroy much of the existing, typical storage stack. Drives would become native key/value stores that manage their own space mapping with accessing applications simply …
Chris Mellor, 22 Oct 2013
Toshiba MK6465GSX

Toshiba touts 640GB laptop hard drive

Not to be outdone by Hitachi's new 7200rpm, 500GB 2.5in hard drive, rival disk maker Toshiba has announced a 640GB model, though it only spins at 5400rpm. The full capacity is delivered on just two storage platters thanks to a data density of 528.5Gb per square inch. It means the capacity can be delivered without upping the …
Tony Smith, 02 Sep 2009
channel

Western Digital gearing up to sell 3TB drives

Western Digital is tipped to barge into the 3.5 inch 3TB drive market as early as this month. Techarp has been told WD will launch a set of 3TB 3.5-inch hard disk drives (HDD) later this month. Currently only Seagate ships a 3TB dive, a 5-platter unit available as an external drive or included in its BlackArmor NAS desktop …
Chris Mellor, 04 Oct 2010