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Sep 19 2014

HGST Launches 8-TB-HDDs


Hitachi Global Storage Technology (HGST) is expanding its "Enterprise Capacity" series of HDDs with a new 8 TB drive that follows the 6 TB model launched earlier this year. In addition, the company announced the "world's first data center-class 10TB HDD for cloud-to-cold storage applications."

HGST's new, helium-filled flagship series of drives – dubbed Ultrastar He8 – offers either 6 or 8 TB capacity based on a 7-disk design. The platters spin at 7,200 RPM and use standard perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR); otherwise, they're equipped with SATA 6G or SAS 12G interfaces for speedy data transfers and come with a number of comfort functions, including partly configurable sector sizes, built-in encryption, and Rebuild Assist for fast RAID restores. According to HGST, the SATA-based Ultrastar He8 draws 5.1 watts in idle mode and 7.4 watts in working state, whereas the SAS model requires 5.7 and 9.1 watts. If the numbers are verified, that would mean the drives deliver 33% more capacity and use 23% less operating power than competing HDDs as a result of the relatively fresh HelioSeal™ technology.

By contrast, the next-generation 10TB drive will be the first to combine HelioSeal™ with Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR), which takes a different approach to writing tracks to the hard drive: Basically, SMR puts tracks closely together in parallel, so that they 'overlap' like rooftop shingles (as opposed to PMR, where there's space left between the tracks). The idea here is to add up the benefits of both technologies to achieve higher capacities not only per drive, but also per array, thus lowering both the cost and the power consumption per terabyte of storage space. According to HGST, the first samples of the 10 TB drives have already been shipped to OEMs – if confirmed, that would put them well ahead of the competition. At the same time, the company also announced that from 2017 onward, all of its Enterprise Capacity HDDs will use the HelioSeal™ technology; thus the soon-to-be-expected Ultrastar 7K6000 with 6TB becomes HGST's last air-filled hard drive.

For a roundup of HGST's latest and future offerings, please see this press release.


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