Need to nail some storage? Seagate is bringing the HAMR!

NEWS – Gadgeteers keep a lot of stuff, and much of that is digital stuff.  Photos, videos, miscellaneous files – they all take up storage space.  For business, it’s even worse as all employees have that “can’t get rid of it” mentality. Seagate is bringing the HAMR down with their brand new Exos 20+ series hard drives with heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) technology.

HAMR tech briefly heats the disk material, making it  more receptive to the magnetic recording heads inside the disk assembly.  This allows the data bits to be smaller so they can pack more data into the same physical space. Who cares, you say?  Well, this new recording method is allowing Seagate to produce brand new drives later this year, starting at 20TB as drop-in replacement 3.5″ drive bays.

Think about that for a minute.  In one of my early jobs back in 1985, I was the first person in the office to get an IBM AT PC.  Everyone else had XTs with 10MB hard drives.  The AT has a 20MB hard drive.  20MB!  20-million bytes of storage!  Who could possibly fill all that space?  Now, Seagate’s new Exos 20+ can hold the same amount of data as ONE MILLION of those AT hard drives!  That’s a pretty amazing difference in 35 years.  Granted, these are enterprise-class disks versus personal-class disks, but they’re still the same physical form factor.

Seagate expects to ship 18TB and 20TB drives later this year and has a roadmap to deliver 80TB drives.  They should have read and write speeds in excess of 261MB per second and spin at 7200RPM.

Seagate hasn’t announced an official ship date nor pricing, but I’m sure they won’t come cheap.  Still, if you run a data center and need a ton of storage, this looks like a viable solution.

You can read more about Seagate’s HAMR technology on Seagate’s website.

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6 thoughts on “Need to nail some storage? Seagate is bringing the HAMR!”




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  2. In about 1987 my office installed a new closed network for classified material with each PC having 30MB hard drives and a server that had 120MB storage. As you did, we wondered why we would ever need more!

    1. Of course, Leo, to keep everything in perspective, our removable storage was a 360KB 5.25″ floppy or 1.44MB 3.5″ floppy, and now, 1TB flash drives are around $30 on Amazon. So, a 1TB flash drive can hold the equivalent of nearly 700,000 3.5″ 1.44MB disks. I can find 3.5″ disks on Amazon for about $20 for a box of 10, or $2 each.

      This means that a $30 stick can replace $1.4M worth of floppy disks.

      It staggers the mind.

      1. My first laptop was a Zenith Z-150 with a 10MB hard drive and a floppy disk drive and a green and black screen. I spent many hours on that 20+ pound laptop in hotel rooms using WordPerfect and dBase.

  3. I was interested to hear that Amazon was carrying 1 TB flash drives for $30. Since most places are advertising these for $100-200, I went to read the reviews for the Amazon one that popped up in Google. Over 25% of the reviews were one star, with all sorts of issues, including a claim that the measured capacity was only 64 GB though 1 TB was marked. I suspect many of the positive reviews could be fake. Have you or anyone you know actually bought a 1TB drive for $30, I’d love to know the place and brand, and how well they worked. Or I suppose I could just wait 6 months!

  4. Ricardo O. Carlos

    Yeah… been messing with hard drives since the 90’s… it unimaginable how much their capacity have increased in 30 years, I just wished their reliability/longevity had increased as much too.

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