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Data Storage Hardware

The First Terabyte Hard Drive Reviewed 495

mikemuch writes "ExtremeTech has a review and benchmarks of the Hitachi Deskstar 7K1000 1TB Hard Drive, which ushers in the terabyte age. It performs well on HDTach and PCMark benchmarks, though not as speedily as professional-grade drives. It could be just the ticket for digital media junkies. 'One of the first issues to note is that you may not see an actual one terabyte capacity on your system. First, the formatted capacity is always less than the raw space available on the drive. Directory information and formatting data always take up some space. Second, the hard drive industry's definition of a megabyte differs from the rest of the PC business. One megabyte of hard drive space is 1,000,000 bytes: 10^6 bytes. Operating systems calculate one megabyte as 2^20 bytes, or 1,048,576 bytes. Once installed and set up, Hitachi's 1TB hard drive offers up an actual formatted capacity of about 935GB, as measured by the OS. That's still a lot of space, by anyone's definition.'" Update: 05/17 21:52 GMT by Z : Adding '^s' missing from article.
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The First Terabyte Hard Drive Reviewed

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  • Lots of space? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 17, 2007 @05:28PM (#19169901)
    "that's still a lot of space, by anyone's definition"

    I said that when I got my first 6Gb drive a decade ago - that was a hell of a step up from 200Mb - now it wouldn't even fit a quarter of my mp3's on it!
  • by Lord Ender ( 156273 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @05:30PM (#19169971) Homepage
    Is there anyone out there who would be buying a 1TB hard drive who doesn't already know the difference between binary and decimal prefixes? I think their target market is well aware of the differences between GiB and GB.

    Actually, it seems some Microsoft programmers still don't know the difference. At least most open source apps properly distinguish between binary and decimal prefixes. Not so for Windows...
  • Re:Damn... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NorbMan ( 829255 ) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @05:41PM (#19170185) Journal
    I still have a 10 Megabyte (yes, Megabyte) hard drive on an Apple //. It still isn't full.
  • Alright, after reading that, I want a yottabyte hard drive in my house server- ought to be good for recording all sensor data, including DVR, for the next century or so....
  • WOW, 1TB (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anon-Admin ( 443764 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @05:47PM (#19170319) Journal
    I remember when I paid $150 for a 10meg MFM drive! (poke c800:50 ;)
    I remember paying $1000 for my first 1gig drive!
    I remember paying $500 for my first 1TB of drive space (6x300gb drives ok 1.8TB unformatted)
    I remember paying $350 for my second 1.1TB of drive space (4x320gb Just last week)

    I can not wait to get to my first 6TB system! I may have said, many years ago, that I would never fill 1gig, but I know I can fill 6TB It should not take me more than a couple of months.

    Man how things have changed!

    Then 8mhz, 640k ram and 10megs.
    Now 2.4Ghz dual core, 2gig ram, 1.1TB HD

    I wonder what we will say in another 16 years.
  • I want a 5400 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @06:02PM (#19170619) Journal
    While I know that most folks like the faster larger disks, the truth is that these are NOT used in most businesses. Many business will use >= 10K, SCSIed and raided (save the small ones). These will be used in home drives or as LARGE storage. It would make sense to have these spin at lower speeds to increase the MTBF. In particular, if these are raided, then you can get plenty of speed.
  • Other math.... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Avatar8 ( 748465 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @06:23PM (#19170979)
    No, not more of the 106 and 220 re-hash. That's been beat to death.

    How about some purchasing math?

    Just went to Newegg to check on this. Drive is selling for $600, not the $400 the article mentioned. Zipzoomfly has it for $500 but it's out of stock. CDW has it for $450. (Anyone have better hardware buying sources?)

    Just below the Hitachi 1TB were the 500Gb drives at ~$150 each. Let's see if I have $600 and the right system to support it, would I take a single 1TB drive or take 4x 500Gb drives and put them in a RAID 5 giving me 1.5TB and faster read speed (if the data is well distributed)? Hmmm

    I guess I'm not as much of a geek as I used to be. I don't download very much, I don't rip CDs or DVDs and I don't do much with graphics. I'm guessing the 320Gb I just got in February will last me quite a while. I'll wait for the 2TB drives and the SATA 5 throughput, thank you very much.

  • by DocSavage64109 ( 799754 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @06:48PM (#19171431)
    So I suppose when you buy ram, you buy it in 1.073742GB sticks or do you actually manage to find 1GiB sticks? Actually, I would tend to agree with you but Mebibytes and Gibibytes just sound inane.
  • Fix one or the other (Score:3, Interesting)

    by billcopc ( 196330 ) <> on Thursday May 17, 2007 @06:49PM (#19171449) Homepage
    I can't help but feel cheated deep down when a gigabyte on the box is not a gigabyte in my PC. I know the numbers, I know the reasoning but wouldn't it be all much easier if we fixed one or the other ? Hard drives are sold in decimal gigabytes, so why does all the software report in gibibytes ? It's obvious that the easy solution would be to use gibibytes everywhere, since it's easier to change the printing on a box than it is to fix all the software in the world. Especially as sizes increase and the differential grows quite large, this becomes rather important.

    I'm sure anyone who's ever been in a retail situation has had to deal with the ignorant yet logical customer that demanded a 7% refund on their undersized hard drive. In the case of this terabyte drive, we're talking about 70 gigabytes. Most people don't even have 70gb worth of data on their PC (excluding file hoarders)... that is one big marketing discrepancy. The bigger the gap, the louder and more frequently the ignorants will complain.

    How hard is it, really, to just quote the proper number ? Or maybe just increase the actual capacity by 7% to avoid printing an odd number like 931gb.
  • Re:eh? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by dgatwood ( 11270 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @06:59PM (#19171629) Homepage Journal

    One of the funniest things I've seen lately was when I bought a hard drive a few weeks ago. Maxtor has started using base 2 for their drive sizes. Their 300 GB drives are an actual 300 Gigs instead of the storage-challenged 300 gidebytes (giga decimal bytes---see, I can make up stupid new words, too). They tout this as "Bonus: 20 extra gigabytes". No joke.

  • by Billy the Impaler ( 886238 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @07:11PM (#19171775)

    (pounds being pounds of force, of course -- unbeknown to most)
    The pound is a measurement of force. The US/Imperial unit of mass is the slug (yes, the slug) and it is approximately equal to 14.5939 kg. When most people refer to pounds they're actually talking about pounds mass, even if they don't know it. Only engineers ever think about slugs as a unit of measurement.
  • by LaRoach ( 968977 ) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @07:16PM (#19171827)
    It's been a looong time, but I'm positive the manufactures used to use 2^20, etc to calculate size. I remember reading in some article that a marketing droid found out they were doing this and started user 10 based counting to calculate drive size and all the other manufacturers jumped in. This was all ten or fifteen years ago. I may have to drag out an old ST-251 and check sizes. Any older slashdotters remember it being this way too?
  • Screw the hitachi! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AbRASiON ( 589899 ) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:51PM (#19172935) Journal
    The Hitach is a 1000mb drive with 5x200gb platters.
    The Seagate (due soon) is a 1000mb drive with 4x250gb platters and (iirc) 32mb of cache.

    The increased platter density will slightly increase performance and theoretically decrease cost, it'll slightly reduce heat and also power use too.

    On top of this Seagate offer a 5 year warranty on all drives (Hitachi may also, sorry not sure) and Seagate used to be one of the quietest available to boot. (although I hear the 7200.10's suck for noise, apparently some kind of patent issue with using low acoustic mode - hope that's sorted?)

    Anyhow, what this does mean for us end users is you'll see 2 platter, 500gb drives which weigh less, cost less, run faster and cost substantially less than the 1000mb models, also the glorious 750gb will become a 3 platter model instead of a 4 platter (my personal 'limit' is 3playtters - after that I find it too prone to noise / heat / failure rate)

    I'd say we'll see 80$ (rebate) 500gb drives within 3 months and we'll see the 750's at 169$ or something soon(ish)
  • by sootman ( 158191 ) on Friday May 18, 2007 @12:46AM (#19174859) Homepage Journal
    They should be summarily rejected by the industry, as they simply do not make any sense in the context of storage.

    Actually, I think it's all the fault of marketers. You get to 1000 before you get to 1024, so hard drive manufacturers can build sooner, and thus market earlier, "40,000,000,000" byte drives rather than true 40 GB drives, or you get to sell a 40 GB drive instead of a 37 GB drive. I never heard anything like "one gigabyte = 1 billion bytes" until HDs started getting into the muti-gigabyte range a few years ago. And you're right, "gibibyte", etc., are the the stupidest words, ever.

    The meanings of words change depending on their context. To most people, "quick" and "fast" mean the same thing, but to a drag racer, they're two very different words. "Speed" and "velocity," "mass" and "weight" are the same to most people, but not in physics class. If you're talking about distance in meters, then yeah, 1k = 1000. But if you're talking about memory in computers, 1k = 1024.
  • by Eivind ( 15695 ) <> on Friday May 18, 2007 @06:20AM (#19176459) Homepage
    They sound somewhat silly, but I don't know anyone that actually says "Gibibyte", around where I work it's more like; "Does anyone know if the M70 can handle 8Gib-sticks ?"

    People actually pronounce it "Gib", I don't see a problem with it. Some still say "Gigabyte", but "Gib" seems to be winning out, probably on account of being shorter and simpler to say rather than on being technically more correct.

    I hear only Mib and Gibs though, I can't remember ever hearing anyone saying "KiB".

"Yeah, but you're taking the universe out of context."