Toshiba launches 5TB enterprise hard drives

Toshiba launches 5TB enterprise hard drives

Summary: The firm says that its next-generation HDDs are currently the industry's largest that do not utilize helium gas.

TOPICS: Hardware, Storage

Toshiba has announced the launch of nearline enterprise capacity HDDs with a recording capacity of up to 5TB.

The tech giant says these hard disk drives are the industry's largest for models that are not filled with helium gas. Helium reduces friction and vibration, two elements that limit the storage capacity of hard drives, and also makes such storage consume less power to function. However, while some companies such as HGST have created 6TB HDDs using the gas, helium does have a tendency to leak -- making some drives unusable in the long run.

Toshiba's drives ignore helium completely. The SAS MG04SCA and SATA MG04ACA HDD series, both with an interface speed of 6Gbit/s, will be available in the 3.5-inch form factor and begin shipping in the late half of this month.

The new HDD range uses 1TB magnetic disks to achieve a capacity of 5TB as well as an internal data transfer speed of 205MiB/s, which is 24 percent faster than Toshiba's current models.

In additional to the increase in capacity and speed, the HDDs come with a "Sanitize" feature which eradicates data in a click of a button, and enterprises can also purchase persistent write cache technologies that help protect against data-loss in the event of sudden power loss.

The range's specifications are below.

Screen Shot 2014-02-13 at 06.40.32


Topics: Hardware, Storage

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  • Failure rate?

    A big problem with huge capacity discs is the failure rate. A 1 TeraByte drive stores 8 Terabits. Even with a 1 in 10^14 failure rate, that's unacceptable in a 1TByte drive and becomes 5 times worse in a 5TByte drive. So what failure rate is Toshiba quoting for these enormous capacity discs and what sort of redundancy is Toshiba building in?
    One possible feature for halving disc access times which, as far as I'm aware, has not been implemented by any manufacturer, is to have 2 sets of read-write heads independently accessing the discs from opposite ends of a diameter. This would have 2 significant advantages:
    1) For a given rotational speed, access times would be halved.
    2) Copying from one part of the disc to another would be very much faster because one set of heads could be used for reading and the other set for writing, thus avoiding repetitive repositioning of one set between the read area and the write area.
    I'm sure that disc design experts could come up with other more ingenious uses for two sets of read/write heads.
    Is this a new idea or has it already been done and I don't know about it?
  • 2 sets of write heads

    Someone finally has spoken some sense!!
    I really don't know why it has not been done yet for enterprise disk!!
    I have always wanted to do that. I mean do I really worry about ending
    up with a disk with a 5.1/2 form factor when it has 4 - 8 armatures that overlap with one another in form of a Z, I doubt it! I care about the speed of accessing the same information with random IO for enterprise. One of the reasons SSD are starting to take of due to the improved performance of random IO. One fact that drove me to study engineering, was to one day hopefully end up doing exactly what you said!
    Pitty SSD are kinda of taking over that part of the word now anyways.