20 Nov Fact’s About Your Computer Hard Disk Drive
Fact’s About Your Computer Hard Disk Drive
The venerable Hard Disk Drive (HDD) has been around for 61 years. While new computers increasingly turn to Solid State Disks (SSDs) for main storage, HDDs remain the champions of low-cost, high-capacity data storage. That’s a big reason why we still use them in our Storage Pods.
1956: IBM ships the first hard drive in the RAMAC 305 system. The drive holds 5MB of data at $10,000 a megabyte. The system is as big as two refrigerators and uses 50 24-inch platters
The First Commercial Hard Disk Drive Based Computer - RAMAC
IBM called it RAMAC – short for “Random Access Method of Accounting and Control.” Its storage system was called the IBM 350. RAMAC was big – it required an entire room to operate.
IBM customers forked over $3,200 for the privilege of accessing and storing that information. That’s equivalent to almost $28,000 per month in 2016. Over sixty years ago, data storage cost $640 per megabyte, per month. At IBM’s 1956 rates for storage, a new iPhone 7 would cost you about $20.5 million a month. RAMAC was a lot harder to stick in your pocket, too.
Small and Portable – Easy Access
Nowadays days you can fit 2 TB onto an SD card the size of a postage stamp, but half a century ago, it was a very different story. IBM continued to refine early hard disk drive storage, but systems were still big and bulky.
By the early 1960s, IBM’s mainframe customers were hungry for more storage capacity, but they simply didn’t have the room to keep installing refrigerator-sized storage devices. IBM came up with a solution: Removable storage.
1979: Seagate introduces the ST-506 drive and interface, which is then used in all early microcomputer implementations.
Hard Drive Price Drops
In 1980, a young upstart company named Shugart Technology introduced a 5 MB hard disk drive designed to fit into personal computers of the day. It was a scant 5.25 inches in diameter. The drive cost $1,500.
In the space of 25 years, hard drive technology had shrunk from a device the size of a refrigerator to something less than 6 inches in diameter. And that would be nothing compared to what was to come in the next 25 years.
Speed and Size
The need for better, faster, more reliable and flexible storage also gave rise to different interfaces: IDE, SCSI, ATA, SATA, PCIe. Drive makers improved performance by increasing the spindle speed. The speed of the motor that turns the hard drive. 5,400 revolutions per minute (RPM) was standard, but 7,200 yielded better performance. Seagate, Western Digital, and others upped the ante by introducing 10,000-RPM and eventually 15,000-RPM drives.
Solid State Drives
In early 1990s, you could buy a 20 MB SSD for a PC for $1,000, or about $50 per megabyte. By comparison, the cost of a spinning hard drive had dropped below $1 per megabyte, and would plummet even further.
In essence the SSD hard drive is the most significant improvement in terms of storage medium, they have less errors, are faster, unlike conventional hard drives they have no moving parts so accessing information is faster with SSD’s (read and write rates)
sources- Peter Cohen, Wikipedia