Seagate Revamps and Simplifies Desktop Storage
Nov 1, 2011 - Scotts Valley, CA - Seagate today announced their product integration into the new Barracuda drive family that is tagged “the power of one”. The “One” refers to a single drive technology that incorporates all of the recent industry programs and changes into a 1TB per single platter 3.5" HDD.
In recent times the HDD industry has seen many changes to address the growing data volumes, shifts in data content and the on-going demand for increased performance while maintaining low power. These efforts include SATA3 (6.0Gbps) interface, Advance Format, 4K sectors, multiple RPM drives, and the consolidation of disk drive manufacturing operations down to the remaining 3 players. The Power One product is a new 7200RPM single/dual/triple platter 3.5" desktop disk drive that supports the new UEFI bios, is Win XP compatible, and supports 4K sectors vs the traditional 512 byte sectors. By unifying all the changes into one optimized platform, the end user and the business buyer can now not only simplify their product selections and reduce mutli-sku stocking, but greatly reduce thier qualification costs for the new drives .
The performance of these drives is up to 45% faster that the traditional 5400RPM drives (Barracuda Green Line) with new caching technology and industry leading areal densities. This increased throughput comes at a net operating cost of only $0.20/year over the Green series drives. This small difference is negligible to the point that the Green Line is being phased out. The capacities also are driving down the cost of storage - MSRP ranges from $0.07/GB down to $0.05/GB over the 1TB-3TB range.
A key area for enabling a single drive solution, is the software/firmware that supports the drive. As systems have transitioned to 4K sector format, there has been some data incompatibility with historic 512 sectors. Seagate’s SmartAlign technology resolves these 4K vs 512 sector issues, transparently to the user and operator. The technology is fully compatible with backup and restore methodologies. Additionally, the windows XP 2.1TB drive barrier is addressed by their DiskWizard software. This allows non UEFI bios systems to address full 3TB capacities. (See M&E Tech review March 1, 2011). The current expectation, with the rise of tablets in the workplace, is that desktop systems with Win XP will still be mainstream through 2015.
The challenge for any storage system is the reliability of the media. These new drives use the nano track size that is well known in the Barracuda line (7 nm targets on 75nm tracks) using their AcuTrac servo technology. This system has been used and in application proven in over 650Million drives at very high track densities. The heads track in the effective windspeed of 75MPH over the disk and are driven by dual PZTs. This system allows the drives to be mounted horizontally, vertically or at an angle (as in an all-in-one with touchscreen system) without performance or reliability issues.
The new Barracuda drives are available now.