Gas replacement lowers drive power, temperature
Western Digital plans to ship hard drives filled with helium instead of air, starting from next year. Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (HGST), bought by Western Digital last year for $4.3 billion, believes the change to helium will help significantly reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO) of drives in businesses running their own data centers.
Drives demonstrated in a daisy-chained setup
Just weeks after announcing its first Thunderbolt hard drives, Western Digital appropriately brought the offerings to show off at the Macworld iWorld expo in San Francisco. Electronista took a close look at several of the company's My Book Thunderbolt Duo drives, which were daisy chained to a Thunderbolt display.
Hitachi takes the wraps off new Mac hard drives
Hitachi has introduced a slew of new hard drive solutions for Macs ahead of CES 2012. Among the options for Mac users include new internal hard drives as well as desktop and mobile hard drive solutions. The new drives range variously in capacity from 750GB through to 8TB.
Hard drives supply to drop by 40 -50% in Q1 2012
The global supply of PCs could be short by up to 10 percent due to hard drive shortages caused by the extensive flooding in Thailand. According to Digitimes, vendors have supplies of inventory that will provide supplies for around four weeks. Manufacturers have supplies on hand will last for about one week. In total, the existing supplies of hard drives will ensure supplies remain steady throughout November, but shortages will begin to take effect in December.
Drive available with 500GB or 1TB disk
LaCie has expanded its Rugged series of portable hard drives, introducing the Rugged Mini. The new offering is said to be 40 percent smaller than its predecessors, without sacrificing a durable build. The compact drive features a rubber edge for resistance to shock and falls, while the aluminum housing is also claimed to be water resistant.
New Rugged HDD claimed to reach 110MB/s speeds
LaCie has announced the Rugged USB 3.0 external storage and two USB flash drives, the CooKey and WhizKey. The Rugged drive features the latest USB 3.0 interface, with data transfer rates claimed to reach up to 110MB/s. The company has yet to announced capacities for the updated version, although the current USB 2.0 model is available with 250GB, 320GB or 500GB hard drives.
500GB portable FW drive
Trans International on Tuesday announced an expansion to its miniXpress line of external hard drives with the introduction of three new 500GB external FireWire devices. The miniXpress 825, 825s and 425s are fully hot swappable, bus-powered drives -- made of durable Aluminium to provide rugged yet stylish protection (as well as optimal heat dissipation). All three models sport customizable 2.5-inch, 5,400 rpm SATA drives and an array of I/O options including eSATA, USB 2.0, FireWire 800 and FireWire 400 ports. The 825s and 425s models also include an innovative 2-in-1 connector that combines the eSATA/USB ports to a single connector.
Samsung 2.5-inch 500GB HDD
South Korea's Samsung has announced the release of a new hard drive, what it is calling the world's first 2.5-inch hard drive to reach a 500GB capacity. Although it fits into the standard 0.37-inch vertical space reserved for notebook disks, it nevertheless uses three stacked 167GB platters, spinning at 5,400rpm. An 8MB buffer is present, and it interfaces with systems using a 3Gbps SATA connection. Pricing is $299.
Enhance 4/8-drive storage
Enhance Technology has unveiled the new EnhanceBOX E4 MS and E8 MS series external host card (HBA) dependent desktop SAS/SATA storage arrays. The new storage devices offer support for high capacity SAS and SATA I/II 3Gbps hard drives using the latest Mini-SAS SFF-8088 connectivity, and depending on the host cards are configurable as JBOD (Just a Bunch of Disks) or RAID to sustain data transfer rates of up to 500MB/sec. The EnhanceBOX E4 MS is priced at $375, while the EnhanceBOX E8 MS is available for $650.
Refurb Xserves, Apple TVs
Apple's online store is once again offering reconditioned Xserve Quad Xeon server systems, as well as its Apple TV set top box at discounted rates. Refurbished Xserve 2.66GHz Quad Xeon servers each feature 1GB of memory, an 80GB hard drive, and Mac OS X Server 10.4 Unlimited-Client Edition for $2,999. Apple's faster Xserve 3.0GHz Quad Xeon servers with 1GB of memory, an 80GB hard, and Mac OS X Server 10.4 Unlimited-Client Edition are each available for $3,799. Reconditioned Apple TVs with 40GB and 160GB hard drives are also available for $229 and $339, respectively.
Freefall sensor patent
Apple has today been granted a patent by the US Patent and Trademark Office, for a submission called Method and apparatus for detecting free fall. Many notebooks, and smaller devices as well, use hard drives which park their heads when a fall is detected; this prevents the heads from scratching or punching through storage platters. Sensing when to do this requires an accelerometer, and it is here that Apple has laid claim to two different concepts.
Toshiba 80GB Car Drive
Looking to grow the market for in-car computers, Toshiba today introduced the largest-ever hard drive built specifically for vehicles. The MK8050 series stores just 80GB but includes the shock tolerance to handle engine vibration or the jolts from the road underneath. These new 2.5-inch drives are 50 percent more resilient than past models despite the size increase, Toshiba boasts. The company also creates a cushion of air around the read head that prevents it from scratching the platters during a car trip, even at altitudes as high as 3.4 miles above sea level where the pressure would otherwise not be enough to prevent an accident.