Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?
Data Storage Technology

Seagate's Shingled Magnetic Recording Tech Boosts HDD Capacities to 5TB and Up 195

crookedvulture writes "Seagate has begun shipping hard drives based on a new technology dubbed Shingled Magnetic Recording. SMR, as it's called, preserves the perpendicular bit orientation of current HDDs but changes the way that tracks are organized. Instead of laying out the tracks individually, SMR stacks them on top of each other in a staggered fashion that resembles the shingles on a roof. Although this overlap enables higher bit densities, it comes with a penalty. Rewrites compromise the data on the following track, which must be read and rewritten, which in turn compromises the data on the following track, and so on. SMR distributes the layered tracks in narrow bands to mitigate the performance penalty associated with rewrites. The makeup of those bands will vary based on the drive's intended application. We should see the first examples of SMR next year, when Seagate intends to introduce a 5TB drive with 1.25TB per platter. Traditional hard drives top out at 4TB and 1TB per platter right now."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Seagate's Shingled Magnetic Recording Tech Boosts HDD Capacities to 5TB and Up

Comments Filter:
  • by Covalent ( 1001277 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @04:58PM (#44812711)
    ... for a significant reduction in speed?

    No thanks.
  • by The MAZZTer ( 911996 ) <megazzt&gmail,com> on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @05:01PM (#44812747) Homepage
    Only write speed, it sounds like. So storing one-write/many-read files might be a good use case; such as videos, photos, music, etc...
  • Re:5 1/4 HD's (Score:4, Informative)

    by lgw ( 121541 ) on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @09:06PM (#44815125) Journal

    There was once a "bigfoot" brand of HDDs that did just that. It was a disaster. It's unlikely anyone will try that again. You can just put 2 3.5" drive in about the same volume in your case, so why not do that?

  • Re:5 1/4 HD's (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @09:18PM (#44815185)

    As I understand it, one of the big reasons for moving away from 5.25" toward 3.5" and smaller is because of the need for faster and faster seek and read/write times. They had already made the bus path from head to CPU pretty fast, after that, the low hanging fruit for further gains was to simply make the disk(s) spin faster. After all, you can't possibly send bits on the wire faster than they spin past the read head. Problem is, spinning the larger 5.25" platters faster a) sucks back a lot more power than their smaller brethren. b) more power means more heat==shorter MTBF c) increased vibration increases read/write errors. (a problem exacerbated by ever-smaller magnetic domains)

    Another reason of course is that the smaller package just makes so much sense at the end user level as well. Smaller portable consumer devices, more drives per rack etc

    Finally; selling 5.25" drives in a world of 3.5" and smaller has been tried. "Quantum Bigfoot" []

"I have not the slightest confidence in 'spiritual manifestations.'" -- Robert G. Ingersoll