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Some Hard Drive Nostalgia To Start Off the Year

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the for-auld-lang-syne dept.

Data Storage 163

ColdWetDog writes "It's the end of another calendar year and time for all sorts of retrospective pieces. Instead of going back to last year or even last decade, MacWorld has a quick slide show on the The Evolution of Hard Drives which more accurately would be described as 'A Dozen Pictures of Ancient Magnetic Storage Devices.' Still and all, it might be interesting to those young'uns who think that 10 Gigabytes is small."

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Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (5, Interesting)

Super Dave Osbourne (688888) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729032)

as of recently. Bought a RAID setup with 1.5 TB drives about 1.5 years ago. The same drives are selling at the same retail for the same price last week. I think this part of our history in drives will be recognized as a major stall in product development, innovation and consumer needs.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (-1, Offtopic)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729058)

What the hell happened during the past three hours? Goddamn, brother, what the hell is going on? That's Special Agent Dale Cooper! FOr God's sake, Jeffries, where the hell have you been? What am I doing here?

Who is this girl in my bed?

What is this shit on my face?

My God, what is that awful smell?!

Her name is Rio and she dances on the sand.
Just like that river twisting through a dusty land.
And when she shines she really shows you all she can
Oh Rio Rio dance across the Rio Grande.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729282)

I want to clean the sand from between Rio's dusty toes.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (3, Informative)

thue (121682) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729124)

3TB drives have become available over the last 1.5 years. That is a nice improvement over the previous max of 2TB.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729184)

Don't forget that SSDs are now much more mainstream than 1.5 years ago. Drives have gotten faster, rather than bigger

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (1)

stonedcat (80201) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729216)

They're squeezing as much profit out of us as they can.
If they started released 3, 4, or 5Tb drives at reasonable prices we wouldn't keep buying up these 1 & 2Tb drives like they're going out of style.
It's almost entirely likely that these drives are almost effortlessly cheap to make now but there's no incentive to lower prices because we all need them.
More accurately this part of our history will be known as "the great cashgrab" of the early 2000s.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (4, Informative)

MartinSchou (1360093) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729292)

If they started released 3, 4, or 5[TB] drives at reasonable prices we wouldn't keep buying up these 1 & 2[TB] drives like they're going out of style.

Since the issue with drives that size isn't about production ability as much as it is about the computers' ability to handle them properly, this just isn't true.

Why bother selling something that will result in all the margins being eaten up by support calls, RMAs and constant bitching and complaining about something you have no control over?

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (3, Insightful)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729686)

Agreed.

Also, larger disk drives tend to become less reliable in my experience.

I have a server where daily roll back backups is made to a 1.5TB drive every 24 hours. Given that I only do a rollback of Inetpub on that drive I get about 170 to 200 days worth of dailies out of it.

I would love to slot in a 3TB drive or larger, but reliability is such that I would rather swop out the drive for a new one twice a year and put the full drive in a "storage" server at the office than risk losing a year worth of roll backs due to a drive failure.

(Before anyone flags my backup method, we do have other backups on three other servers, but since these have 1.5TB drives for backup at the largest and they serve as backup/failover nodes for eight servers total every server has a rollback backup drive in it. We are a smallish setup that cannot afford a SAN setup, so we make do with what we have. That means that per server we can keep about 30odd days worth of failover backups on these servers. Again larger drives would be great.)

Anything larger than 1TB also become problematic in a RAID setup, where I found the Seagate NS drives to be almost bulletproof - up to 1TB. I would not trust anything larger than that in a RAID array just yet.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729720)

Oh so you're buying into that nonsense?
Right I won't even bother trying then..

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (4, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729300)

I think there's many reasons:

1. People moving to laptops, desktops aren't that big anymore
2. A lot of research and focus going into SSDs
3. Increased use of streaming services
4. Higher bandwidth means you rather delete and redownload later

Obviously there's a lot of people that still need a lot of storage space, but having a single 3 TB drive over 2x1.5 TB drives is just not that important, if you need a bunch of them you're looking at $/TB not how many drives there are. I built myself a very plain "server" using a big gaming case, a PSU and mobo with many SATA connections and it got room and connectors for 10 drives. Right now it has a bunch of various disks from 250 GB to 1.5 TB so it's only 6-7 TB total but fully loaded I could now have 30 TB in it, which is massive overkill even for my packrat habits. Of course in the long run it would be nice to have 10+ TB drives but my willingness to pay a price premium for a slightly bigger disk is very low. I'd rather just add one more 2 TB disk than an expensive 3 TB disk.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729692)

I think #1 is the key.
Rather than try to squeeze more data on each disk, manufacturers are now focusing on keeping the same size (1/2 to 1 terabyte) but shrinking the size of the drive to fit inside phones and iPads and laptops.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730396)

#1 does not account for servers and datacenters.

That particular space is always hungry for more storage capacity. The difference between populating a 16 bay storage array with 3TB drives vs. 1TB drives is substantial. However, as many people have stated those 3TB drives have not been that reliable.

We've been sitting on 1TB-2TB drives being the largest and most economical drive for quite some time now.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730714)

But datacenters are happy to have more (physically) smaller drives as well because they offer more IOs per second.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729764)

You can also get PCI cards that have 4 to 8 SATA ports on them. You just need to be sure that your PSU can handle them/has SATA power ports for them.

Easy to build a monster storage unit - the problems begin when you want redundancy to protect against per drive disk failure. In the end you would optimally want at least two gigs redundant storage per gig of storage.

Which means for every 1TB drive you will look at at least one extra 1TB drive that is in a raid1 array to protect against data loss in a drive. That is the simplest way to do it. I know you can get striping and parity and all that other nice stuff on more complex arrays, but I am talking the most simple solutions here.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729392)

as of recently. Bought a RAID setup with 1.5 TB drives about 1.5 years ago. The same drives are selling at the same retail for the same price last week. I think this part of our history in drives will be recognized as a major stall in product development, innovation and consumer needs.

It might just be because the dollar, euro, pound etc have tanked, making the drives appear to be the same price to you.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729770)

I live in South Africa, and we paid about R1000 for a 1TB Seagate in January 2010, in November 2010 we bought them for R450 each.

That is less than half in 11 months and still coming down.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (3, Informative)

makomk (752139) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729634)

3TB drives exist, but unfortunately there's not a huge market for them. Hardly any computers out there are actually capable of booting from them, and many can't even access them at all due to driver issues.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729920)

Hardly any computers out there are actually capable of booting from them, and many can't even access them at all due to driver issues.

Hard drive manufacturers have always faced that issue. Why do you think we have partitions on hard drives? The file systems of the day could not handle hard drives of that size, so they were logically split into multiple virtual disk drives.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

Barny (103770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730074)

Yes, but the problem this time isn't with the file system, its with the partitioning system.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729656)

Maybe you should shop somewhere else instead of trying to think. Obviously the latter hasn't worked that well considering your assessment of our times.
1.5TB hdds are at least 40% cheaper now than they were a year ago.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (1)

trum4n (982031) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730140)

All innovation is in SSD's right now. And that's a good thing...cause they suck right now.

Re:Amazing that drive tech has stalled... (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730298)

Bought a RAID setup with 1.5 TB drives about 1.5 years ago. The same drives are selling at the same retail for the same price last week.

You're getting some fuzz in your pricing because of the packaged-solution nature of what you're looking at. Bare 1.5TB drives have gone from about $129 a year ago to about $89 today. That's right on schedule, give or take inflation and exchange rates. The 2TB drives have replaced the 1.5's at about the same level.

Please don't post slideshows (4, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729072)

I know you have a quota, Timothy, but if it's obviously just an advertising focused slideshow, be the bigger man here, and don't buy in to it, and [i]just don't post that shit[/i]. I know your job is to drive more traffic to Slashdot, but don't take the shortcut of posting slideshows (Even if you acknowledge them in the post) - you're only killing slashdot's long term credibility by doing this. You've never been a good "editor" (ok, maybe on occasion you use spell check) but don't become the John Katz of bad news aggregator habits (i.e. linking to slideshows).
 
  Just don't do it, Timothy. Please.

Re:Please don't post slideshows (-1, Offtopic)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729104)

I'm gonna fuckin' vomint, man.
HERUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!
Ga-Huh-Ka-HAH. NNNUrghGLUGHUGHUGHUGHUGHUGHU. FUck, man. I just PUKED.

Re:Please don't post slideshows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730492)

"Vomint"? Is that like vomit but with built-in breath freshener?

Re:Please don't post slideshows (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729112)

Miserable fucker.

Re:Please don't post slideshows (2)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729566)

slashdot's long term credibility

It's the 1st of January, not April.

Re:Please don't post slideshows (2)

macslas'hole (1173441) | more than 3 years ago | (#34731274)

obviously just an advertising focused slideshow

I know it isn't fashionable around here, but did you even see the effing slideshow? It was mostly about old IBM tech from the 1950's. So unless the advertising was for RAMAC's, which you can't just buy anymore, I'm not seeing it.

Ahhh, the good ole days... (3, Funny)

Antony-Kyre (807195) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729086)

when just a few megabytes was considered large.

By the way, anyone care to make a guess how big my Windows partition is?

Ahhh, the good ole lengths... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729100)

when just a few megabytes was considered large.

By the way, anyone care to make a guess how big my Windows partition is?

Bigger than your penis?

Re:Ahhh, the good ole lengths... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729148)

Joke's on you; he stores his windows partition on LaserDisc. So that's about 12 inches!

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729102)

what version?
3.11 max of 2GB
98 max of 20GB
XP max of 2TB
Vista/7 max of 64TB

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (2)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729126)

when just a few megabytes was considered large.

My first XT-clone had a 30MB RLL drive. My friends were impressed, as they had only 20MB MFM drives. The XT was replacing a PC-clone which had TWO 360kB floppy drives - the standard was to have only one. I recall being teased by colleagues some years later for buying a "mainframe" 486 with two 400MB drives (cheaper than getting one 600MB drive). Our home server now has 7TB of disk space...
Damn, I'm not even on Geritol yet...

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

kyrio (1091003) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729664)

My personal computer has 6TB of disk space and it's 5 years old. HDD space isn't that special any longer.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729682)

I was just thinking about my old MFM drives as soon as I read the summary. I was given a box of motherboards (mostly 8086, 8088's and 286 boards), MFM drives, VGA cards, and 'memory' chips, which I spent a few years on playing with, building out, stripping down, and rebuilding. The MFM drives were usually 5 or 10 MB in size, and sounded like a canary if you're ear was up next to them. My first 3.5" drive was an ultra DMA 33. I want to think it was something like 250 MB, although my memory fails me on that one. Probably due to the sheer number of IDE hard drives I went through. My first 2.5" drive was actually in an Amiga if I recall. It was about $400 dollars for a 40 MB hard drive.

Back in the day, I was lucky enough to be in a school that had a computer room on the cutting edge (TRS-80 Model 1's). You wrote your few hundred lines of code, and fired up the cassette tape, noted the starting index number on the cassette tape for easy retrieval later, and hit the record button ;)

To 'load' your program back, you simply looked up the index number that where you started your cassette recording, and used forward fast to just before that index number, then hit the play button while 'loading' it on the computer.

Modern convenience at it's finest..lol

It's pretty amazing considering what I was working with in high school back in the early 80's compared to what I have in something like my phone today. The rate of advancement just in a small piece of my lifetime is considerable.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729702)

Actually now that I think on it, those were CGA cards, not VGA...

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729818)

My first XT-clone had a 30MB RLL drive

Mine had a 40MB drive. It was an Amstrad PC1640-HD20, but the stock 20MB hard disk had been replaced with a 40MB one. It had 640KB of RAM, which DOS used quite nicely, but DOS 3.3 was still limited to FAT-12, meaning partitions could not be bigger than 32MB, so I had an 8MB C: for booting and a 32MB D: for everything else. It ran Windows 3.0 reasonably, although running more than one application at once generally popped up some kind of resource-exhausted dialog (memory, GDI handles, whatever).

The first SSD I bought was for my Psion Series 3. It was 128KB and cost £30. It was a single cell, so every write used up some of the capacity and you could only get it back by formatting the disk (erasing everything). Deleting files just marked them in the filesystem as invisible and overwriting a portion of a file just appended the data and updated the file metadata, so you could fill up the drive just by compulsively saving the current document periodically.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729866)

My existing 24/7 running file server. The / and swap is on a 1.2 GB Quantum HD. That drive has been been running almost non stop since the mid 90's except for when on vacation, power outages, and when I upgrade something.


[root@fileserv01 root]# hdparm -i /dev/hda /dev/hda:

  Model=QUANTUM FIREBALL_TM1280A, FwRev=A6B.2000, SerialNo=
  Config={ HardSect NotMFM HdSw>15uSec Fixed DTR>5Mbs TrkOff }
  RawCHS=2484/16/63, TrkSize=32256, SectSize=512, ECCbytes=4
  BuffType=DualPortCache, BuffSize=76kB, MaxMultSect=16, MultSect=16
  CurCHS=2484/16/63, CurSects=2503872, LBA=yes, LBAsects=2503872
  IORDY=on/off, tPIO={min:300,w/IORDY:120}, tDMA={min:120,rec:120}
  PIO modes: pio0 pio1 pio2 pio3 pio4
  DMA modes: sdma0 sdma1 sdma2 mdma0 mdma1 *mdma2
  AdvancedPM=no

[root@fileserv01 root]# hdparm -I /dev/hda /dev/hda:

non-removable ATA device, with non-removable media
                Model Number: QUANTUM FIREBALL_TM1280A
                Serial Number:
                Firmware Revision: A6B.2000
Standards:
                Likely used: 2
Configuration:
                Logical max current
                cylinders 2484 2484
                heads 16 16
                sectors/track 63 63
                bytes/track: 32256 (obsolete)
                bytes/sector: 512 (obsolete)
                current sector capacity: 2503872
                LBA user addressable sectors = 2503872
Capabilities:
                LBA, IORDY(can be disabled)
                Buffer size: 76.5kB ECC bytes: 4
                Standby timer values: spec'd by Vendor
                r/w multiple sector transfer: Max = 16 Current = 16
                DMA: sdma0 sdma1 sdma2 mdma0 mdma1 *mdma2
                          Cycle time: min=120ns recommended=120ns
                PIO: pio0 pio1 pio2 pio3 pio4
                          Cycle time: no flow control=300ns IORDY flow control=120ns

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729190)

Mine's NULL.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729198)

Quite true. I still have a couple of SCSI 9GB drives in a machine at work which is running at the moment.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (2)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729394)

I just got finished installing a Quantum Fireball 18.2Gb yesterday. A frequent customer wanted to know if I had any older machines lying around because he needed a replacement for the PC he used to control his laser cutting table and I told him I had enough parts lying in the back to Frankenstein him something together. I slapped the Fireball into a 1.0GHz Celeron board I had left from a customer upgrade awhile back, along with 512Mb of PC100 and he is a happy little camper. Funny part is the XP Pro license he handed me to put on it was worth more than the box it was going on, but hey, whatever makes the customer happy. It is now sitting in the corner of his shop quietly cutting the parts to a new model gas rig he is fabricating for a client.

It just goes to show ya never know when them old parts in the bin might be useful for something. And if you ever need some weird older part be sure to check out your local mom&pop repair shop. We hate to throw anything running away so it is like a flea market of older tech stuff in the back of most shops. BS with the guy running it for a little while and we'll be happy to let you pick through the bins. And it never hurts to have a shop willing to help you out, as David would have been hurting if he hadn't come up with a replacement ASAP and I know on those models he gets paid upon completion so I was more than happy to let him just carry it out and bring me a check at the end of the week. Always better to help out a good customer, keeps them coming back ya know.

As for TFA, don't waste your time. I don't mind the slide-show format as long as there is some information in the slides but the info contained wouldn't even qualify for the blurb under the pics at Wikipedia. And they seemed to waste about 1/3 of the slides going over RAMDAC. Surely they could have come up with better items instead? Maybe show the dead ends, like Core and Bubble? Or how perpendicular recording has suddenly given us another size boost? I've heard of slie-shows that were just some copypasta to get page views but this is beyond anemic. This is supposed to be news for nerds, and this thing is about like something you'd use to show your grandma what a hard drive was.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (5, Funny)

Albert Sandberg (315235) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729244)

By the way, anyone care to make a guess how big my Windows partition is?

If you're a true slashdotter, about 0 bytes.

just checking (1)

fireylord (1074571) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729856)

Not too sure of the rules here, but are true slashdotters also not allowed to have wine installed and have the relevant 'install' of windows fake files?

Re:just checking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730750)

I think you'll find a true Slashdotter is running Windows and once thought about installing Linux.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730178)

Uh huh. Maybe if everybody wasn't posing as a Linux user just to sound cool.

OS & Apps in 2.4Mb! (1)

RotateLeftByte (797477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729298)

Circa 1972 DEC RK05 Disk Drive. 2.4Mb in a removable case.
Contained the PDP-11 DOS V8 + Compilers + Source to apps.
All loaded from Paper Tape.

This was replaced by the RK06 (28Mb)
Then we had the RL01/RL02 10Mb/20Mb Winchester Technology.

The Good Old RP06's (CDC drives rebadged) of 256Mb. You could make them dance over the floor in Diagnostic Max Seek mode.

Them were the days.

Re:OS & Apps in 2.4Mb! (1)

fireylord (1074571) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729862)

The Good Old RP06's (CDC drives rebadged) of 256Mb. You could make them dance over the floor in Diagnostic Max Seek mode.

Them were the days.

and were they usable afterwards?

Re:OS & Apps in 2.4Mb! (1)

RotateLeftByte (797477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730070)

Ironically yes they were!

Re:OS & Apps in 2.4Mb! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730048)

This was replaced by the RK06 (28Mb)

Ahh - I was sure the RK06 on my departments PDP11/60 was 13MB not 28MB.
The larger version was a RK07. but but the RM80 was right up there
at 60 MB. What a relief that was. Continually scrounging file space by
clobbering student files created such a stir!

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729320)

Mine is 8GB, just enough for a basic installation, for the rare case that I actually need to run some legacy stuff like a BIOS upgrade.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729362)

> By the way, anyone care to make a guess how big my Windows partition is?

The long winter nights must just fly by.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729670)

>>>when just a few megabytes was considered large

Yep. My Commodore Amiga 2000HD and 500 have a tiny 20 megabyte hard drive. That was considered a huge step-up from booting the OS off a floppy. Of course it didn't take long to fill that space, so most of us still used floppies to store all our musics and vids and demos.

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729822)

By the way, anyone care to make a guess how big my Windows partition is?

640K? I mean that should be enough for anyone, right?

Re:Ahhh, the good ole days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729874)

I still have boxes of punched cards in my basement that contain programs and data from the 1960s.

If anybody knows where I can find a card reader, I can load the cards to tape and mail them to a recycling center.

First hard drive I ever saw (1)

GrahamCox (741991) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729106)

First one I ever saw was an 80MB drive which was attached to a network server and shared among ten Mac Pluses in an office. We thought that was a pretty hot system, 1986.

Re:First hard drive I ever saw (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729332)

I still have the 10MB 5.25" from my first XT compatible. Those old drives make nice bookends.

Re:First hard drive I ever saw (1)

CityZen (464761) | more than 3 years ago | (#34731222)

First hard drive I saw was a Corvus Systems 20 MB external unit attached to an Apple II. The box was the size of approx. 4 VCRs (2 stacks, one in front of the other), and it consisted internally of 2 10 MB drives. It needed a couple of minutes to spin up, and it was noisy as heck. However, the speed increase over the floppy drive was amazing, as always. It was possible to network multiple Apple IIs to a single Corvus drive. This was probably around 1980 or so. They also had a tape backup system to transfer the data to VHS videotapes.

Massive (4, Interesting)

Anubis IV (1279820) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729142)

it might be interesting to those young'uns who think that 10 Gigabytes is small.

10 Gigabytes is small. Today. I have a 2TB drive that is massive enough for all of my current personal needs, but I remember a few years back when I bought a massive 200GB drive to supplement the 40GB internal I had in my laptop, and those were more than I needed at the time. Before that, I had a massive 8GB drive in the machine I used for everything. Before that, a massive 80MB one that handled everything I threw at it. Before that, I had a massive 40MB drive that exceeded my needs. That's as far back as I go, I'm afraid, but I would never say that any of the drives I had were small. In fact, if I had to choose a word, it's quite obviously "massive".

QUANTUM: PRODRIVE ELS 42 AT 42MB 3.5"/SL IDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729240)

I have one of those here.

Still runs too, & in perfect working order (w/ DOS 6.22 & Doom I/II on it, & that's all)

---

Capacity 42/MB
Seek time 19.0/ 5.5 ms
Controller IDE
Cache/Buffer 8 KB LOOK-AHEAD
TransferRate 2.500 MB/S
RotationRPM 3663

---

Heh, look @ these specs -> http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:kczc38P7-5wJ:stason.org/TULARC/pc/hard-drives-hdd/quantum/PRODRIVE-ELS-42-AT-42MB-3-5-SL-IDE-AT.html+%22QUANTUM:+PRODRIVE+ELS+42+AT+42MB+3.5%22/SL+IDE%22+and+%22rpm%22&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us [googleusercontent.com]

They'll make you laugh. They do me, especially by way of comparison to the disk setup I have here now:

300gb WD Velociraptor SATA II 10,000rpm 16mb buffer
150gb WD Velociraptor SATA II 10,000rpm 16mb buffer
(Both driven by a Promise SuperTrak Ex8350 128mb ECC RAM RAID 6 PCIe Caching Controller)
GIGABYTE IRAM 4gb SSD (for offloading pagefile.sys, ALL logging (OS event logs, apps that log too), %temp/tmp% ops, webbrowser caches, & print spooling duties, + %comspec% location from those 2 disks above)

APK

P.S.=> I seem to recall the disk did 4500rpm though, even though those specs say 3663 - I think that was just for their temperature test specs on that URL's page content though - man, it's ancient.... apk

Re:QUANTUM: PRODRIVE ELS 42 AT 42MB 3.5"/SL IDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729330)

Hey apk, a few tips to sound less mad:

  1. SUBJECT NOT IN ALL CAPS;
  2. "and" rather than "&" or "+";
  3. "with" rather than "w/";
  4. most importantly, "at" rather than "@";
  5. don't post, long amorphous, lists like, this;
  6. You don't need to separate parts of your post with extra --s - the blank line will do;
  7. Embedded parentheses are for LISP;
  8. Don't draw little arrows and shit to -> parts of your sentences <=;
  9. A "P.S." is usually out of place in a comment post, and always so in yours;
  10. No need to sign off with your name "apk", it's like a kook brand now;
  11. Especially not twice "APK [...] apk".

And, last of all:

  1. We know you like the hosts file. Put it in your sig or something (which I can't see) then never mention it again.

HTH.

Since it's 2011, I made a New Year's Resolution (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729416)

I NO LONGER FEED TROLLS - so until there's an "English Grammar Critique" section at this site? I think you're off topic.

I hope you enjoy my HDD comparison all - I have the Quantum ProDrive next to me now, checking it out... things surely have, changed, by way of comparison to today's tech in HDD's - this IS certain!

(And, yet? Lmao, they're STILL the slowest things in your system just about!)

APK

P.S.=> Anyhow - "Happy New Year Everyone" - except the trolls like the one I am no longer responding to anymore - seems I have an ac coward fan stalking me, "oh, nooo...", lmao!

(I am watching the sun rise now here, as I type this - I hope you enjoy your New Year's Resolution also: I am mine!)... apk

Re:Massive (1)

Vectormatic (1759674) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729426)

yup, i started out with a 40mb drive in a 386, back then i had no concept of disk space, and it never ran out ( i was like 8 or something), through the years drives got bigger and bigger, and now i have an 8 TB media server at home, which is halfway full. The only reason that it might take more then this year to fill it all the way up is because we just moved and got a slower net connection now.

so yeah, for anything but a bare-bones OS install and some basic office suite software, 10 GB IS small

Just IBM? ORLY? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729162)

So Bryant/CDS/CMI/DEC/GE/HP/Seagate/Toshiba/Xerox did nothing?

Re:Just IBM? ORLY? (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729206)

Haven't IBM drives been Hitachi anyway for quite some time?

Re:Just IBM? ORLY? (1)

RotateLeftByte (797477) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729544)

so? This is more about the HISTORY when IBM did a lot of the basic research on rotating magnetic storage.
They were pioneers in at lot of this technology. Many of the landmark leaps in capacity/performance were driven by the needs of Mainframes not PC's as they weren't a reality when most of this tech was hot.
Even Winchester Tech (as used in HDD's today) was around before the PC's became really popular and graduated beyond the capacity of FDD's.

Sine the growth in the overall IT market from the late 1970's onwards sure many other companies have contributed to HDD tech advancement but for many readers of /. (you know those who rarely venture out of their Mom's basement) are far too young to know the ancient history of HDD's.

I started writting Software in 1972. Punched Cards & Paper Tape were the medium of the day.
By 1974 we had PDP-11's with 2.4Mb HDD's. Now we have 1TB Laptop drives. Progress....

Re:Just IBM? ORLY? (1)

kyrio (1091003) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729694)

>macworld

In those days arithmetic was different too (1)

lxs (131946) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729170)

The magnetic disk invented by IBM in the early 1950s contained 100 concentric tracks on each side. Each track stored 500 alphanumeric characters, yielding a total storage capacity of 5 million characters

100x500=5 million?

Re:In those days arithmetic was different too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729220)

100 * 2 * 500 = 100kB. So if they had 50 of them, yes.

Re:In those days arithmetic was different too (1)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729590)

The text for the second slide twice incorrectly states that there were 40 platters. In fact, the IBM 350 had 50.

And it wasn't 5 MB (or MiB, either) in the modern sense, it was 5 million 6 bit (+ 1 parity bit) characters. Due to the head design, which placed two moveable heads between platters, I suspect that there were only 98 surfaces available, so it was probably 2% short of an actual 5 million characters.

Man, 10GB is *tiny* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729200)

I set up a 40GB RAID in '99, and my family still constantly ran out of space.

Re:Man, 10GB is *tiny* (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730422)

Exactly what I came to post. 160GB is small these days, so 10GB is downright diminutive.

In order to qualify as as "small", I would say the capacity has to at least be available for current retail purchase.

Just rename the site (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729204)

macdot

2011 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729284)

The first Slashdot story of 2011 mentions the iPad, the second story is a slide show of ancient hardware. Are you trying to tell us something?

Re:2011 (1)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729374)

Actually, the first story of 2011 was "FBI Raids Texas ISP For Anonymous DDoS Info". The iPad story was about 19 hours after 2011 started on Earth. Happy new year.

Re:2011 (1)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729638)

It depends on which timezone you're in. 2011 started at different (relative) times in different places. The OP was correct, based on the timezone of /.'s servers (I don't see any timezone setting for my account, so I'm assuming the times and date divisions which /. shows are local to the server - EST) . The most accepted "world time" is UTC, and in that timezone, the first article was "Four IT Consultants Charged With $80MM NYC Rip-Off."

Aaaaaah (1)

Colourspace (563895) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729310)

Memories of my A600 with its 20MB internal drive. Stopped me having to load Monkey Island II off 12 (?) disks. Neat, but probably not worth the money it cost at the time.

Re:Aaaaaah (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729724)

"The developers of Monkey Island 2 made using the Amiga version's 11 floppy disks relatively smooth,[9] but also noted that installing the game on a hard drive is recommended." -wikipedia. And I thought Dragon's Lair on 6 disks was a lot! DL had full-motion video..... why did Monkey Island need so much disc space?

That's nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729314)

I was at the National Museum of Computing [tnmoc.org] at Bletchley Park recently, where they have this exhibit [xmsnet.nl] going from a three-foot platter to a 3,5" mechanism (next to the disk box marked 777774).

How time flies (1)

PARENA (413947) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729376)

Posted by timothy on Saturday January 01, @11:15AM

It's the end of another calendar year

woah, took over 11 hours to write that post eh?
 
/offtopic

Constraints on the upper limit. (1)

metalmaster (1005171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729428)

I think the mafiaa will succeed at limiting disk space before technical limits are reached. The often misquoted "64k is enough...." will soon be "1TB is enough..." well, unless you're storing the latest hollywood blockbusters in their full HD glory

Remember the Deskstar/Deathstar? (1)

rephlex (96882) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729478)

I have two 45 gig IBM Deskstar 75GXP drives, aka the Deathstar because of their reputation for unreliability. I've never used mine heavily but they both still work fine in what is now my backup system, despite being very nearly ten years old! I did upgrade their firmware as IBM recommended though which could've helped.

20 megabytes: huge (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729484)

The Priam hard drive I bought in 1979 to go with my LSI-11/23 was 20"x20"x6" and held a whopping 20 megabytes. It overheated and stopped working until I found the hot resistor pack responsible and shined a fan on it. It was a huge improvement over the 8" 1-meg floppies (which were actually... floppy) I used before. The machine had 128 KBytes of RAM, 2 entire 16-bit address spaces. Yowza!

Better read this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34729494)

Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] has a better article on the same subject, IMO.

40MB (1)

Pugwash69 (1134259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729522)

I bought my first PC compatible Epson Apex in 1991 with a 40 megabyte hard drive. I had so much data on it I was running Stacker to do real-time compression giving nearly 80 megabytes for DOS 4.01 and Windows 3.0. Floppy disks held 720 A few years later I bought a 300 megabyte drive for my Amiga A1200. I remember clearly costing £300, but being massive! Now I have a network server for mass storage with a two 2 terrabyte drives installed and room for seven more drives. I'll just buy them as I need them, as obviously prices plunge as fast as sizes increase.

First hard drive: 5MB, 5.25" full-height ST-412, (1)

aussersterne (212916) | more than 3 years ago | (#34729688)

required both an "interface board" (SCSI on one end, ST-412 on the other) and a "host adapter" board (SCSI on one end to connect to the interface board, and the system bus on the other to connect to the SSB mini on the other end). Thing sucked power, made enough heat to cook eggs, and the whole setup cost nearly $2,000 in 1985.

Later, in 1988, was shocked and awed to pick up a used 10MB ST-506 hard drive for $300 locally from a business going out of business.

In about 1994, I remember once again being shocked and awed to pick up a 680MB ESDI hard drive for about the same $300.

Later again, in 1998 or so, I think, I scored a great deal on a series of 9GB Micropolis 1991 drives. These were also full-height, but they had integrated Fast SCSI-II interfaces and seemed blindingly fast. The total cost for the was about $1,000 as I recall, and they were put into a large RAID case for a project I was working on to yield a massive 45GB of storage. They were the size of a small dorm fridge/freezer when all set up, and we were thrilled at the nearly 14MB/sec sustained read rate of the RAID, as I recall.

This week, just put a second 1TB RAID-1 in my hackintosh. Fits inside the case. The removable sleds were $9 each, the Western Digital caviar green 1TB drives were $59 each (total cost: $140), and the whole thing fits inside a mini-ATX tower, takes next to no power, and offers sustained reads of about 80MB/sec. For booting the same machine, I'm replacing my 40GB Intel X-25V SSD with an 80GB Intel X-25M. Cost? About $100 new on eBay. Sustained read: 200MB/sec. Power: basically none.

Hard drive technology has moved massively fast over the last 20-25 years, and of course, before my time, for the 20-25 years before that. At any particular moment, it seems that people are often bemoaning stagnation, but the big picture is that it is truly remarkable to see 3TB drives coming out in a 3.5" form factor that generate virtually no heat, use very little power, and are as reliable as they are.

Oddities beside the capacity (1)

michael_cain (66650) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730104)

In 1975, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln computer science department got a 16-bit minicomputer. The hard disk drive took up the bottom couple of feet of a rack. The thing I remember about it was not the storage capacity, but the time it took to spin up. In order to help maintain a constant speed, the unit had a 30-40 pound steel disk mounted on the shaft below the disk platters to provide rotational inertia. Took somewhere between two and three minutes to bring that sucker up to speed.

Re:Oddities beside the capacity (1)

wbean (222522) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730344)

Thank you, thank you. I have spent many hours in two minute increments waiting for those drives to spin up and I never knew why it took so long :)

Punched cards don't belong there (2)

SpinyNorman (33776) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730394)

Punched cards don't belong in the "the evolution of the hard drive"... they weren't used for online storage but rather for a combination of data entry and for data transportation (in which, latter, role they might be considered a precursor to floppys and nowadays USB drives which fill that role).

Punched cards belong to the era of batch computing (submit job, come back later and collect results), before being "online" (initially on a mainframe/minicomputer terminal) became common/possible. Rather than sitting at a computer terminal typing your program in an editor, you'd instead sit at a card punch machine typing your program onto punched cards (one line per card); each keystroke caused that character pattern to be punched onto the card, and, since you can't "unpunch" a card, there was no backspace key - if you made a mistake youd have to feed in a new blank card and could hold down the "copy" key to copy the old card up to the point of your mistake (this rapid copying/punching made a very loud noise like a machine gun).

Once you'd punched your cards you'd put a rubber band around them to keep them in order (if you dropped them, there were sorting machines that could resort them based on numbers punched into the cards), then submit them to the computer operator who, when your time came (no multitasking), would put the cards into a card reader where they'd be read into computer memory for execution. Your printed output (maybe a syntax error, or core dump, or your results if you're program was working), together with your card deck, would be returned to you later when it was available. If you wanted to change your program you could now insert/remove punched cards from your deck, and resubmit the job. Core dumps (printed on fanfold paper, which you'd stretch out across the floor) originated from this batch era, since without the ability to debug your program online (as it runs), this was one way (other than print statements) you could debug them between batch runs.

***

Other than removing puched cards from this "evolution", they should really have stared it with reel-reel mag tape which was the original online storage media, and should really have put removable disk packs in there someplace (disk packs were common with PDP 11/23, etc minicomputers in the early Unix days, and consisted on your disk platters on a spindle in hard plastic housing with a handle on it - the platters were seperate from the drive itself into which you inserted the disk pack. Since disk packs had to have an opening for the disk heads, you were able to smell head crashes where the disk head had crashed (due to a dust particle or whatever) into the surface of your platter and ground it up :-(

***

I was waxing nostalgic over computer storage myselkf the other day. My first home computer c.1978 used a 300 baud (10 bits/char => 30 char/sec) audio cassette for storage, and I well remember the first 5MB personal hard disks (an external unit about the size of a shoe-box) that appeared in the early 80's. It makes me appreciate the 8GB of RAM ($100) I just popped into my latest PC, not to mention the 1TB hard drive.

10Gb? Why I can remember when... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730446)

...I told you kids to GET OFF MY LAWN!

Re:10Gb? Why I can remember when... (1)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730466)

No it's: Hey you kids get off my LAN!!!!!

Any Space Nutters out there? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730540)

Notice the lack of space-related development? That's right, computers came BEFORE the Space Age. We have computers today because computers are USEFUL, not because of the Moon landings!

I hate slide shows (3, Insightful)

Hittman (81760) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730580)

Want to make me leave your page in an instant? Promise something tantalizing, then present me with a slide show I've got to click through.

See ya!

Reminiscence from an early Millenial/Gen-Y (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34730606)

Since everyone's posting their first machine's stats, I'll jump on the bandwagon.

It was a cheap machine by the day's standards. I was about 11 in 1994 when my family got it and I was quite fond of it:

Packard Bell 486SX (Don't remember the exact speed; I think it might've been 33MHz)
4MB RAM, later upgraded at great cost to 8MB
300MB HDD
Windows 3.11 for Workgroups, with some sort of underlying program I remember called "Navigator" I think that the machine booted into (no, not Netscape)

Back in those days, I knew no one on the internet and my knowledge of computers was limited to two things: word processing and games. I wrote papers in Ami Pro and Wordperfect DOS, played Simcity, Klotski and Minesweeper, and programmed in GWBASIC and QBASIC. I never grew tired of exploring the hard drive and the programs that were available. To this day I still double-click on the top-left icon to close a program. Those were the days...

I have a 120... (1)

Ritchie70 (860516) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730742)

Despite being a fortune level company, there's a lot of scourging for hardware. I happen to have a pile of hard drives I offer to people who come looking, and start out with "I have a 120 you can have."

They then reply "120 G? Great!"

At which time I'm forced to admit it's M.

Source from IBM Archives (1)

HockeyPuck (141947) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730814)

Lame article... which is really just a reprint of photos from IBM Storage Archives [ibm.com] site.

I bet the author's email to IBM asking permission to use the photos went something like this:

Dear IBM Archives Group:

I am an author at MacWorld and I have no more ideas for what to write about since bloggers have better sources on the iPhone/iPad/iPod/iOS than I. I'm in desperate need of source material and I came across your archives website. Since most of my readers thought storage was build by Apple, I'd like to show them that you guys have been making storage since before Apple was around and most of my readers were born. Can I just copy a bunch of your pics and make a slideshow out of them? My editor will kill me if I don't. By the way, I was a OS/2 user back in the early 90s and my mother used an IBM selectric typewriter in college.

hard drives? (2)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 3 years ago | (#34730880)

Funny. My first _three_ computers didn't even HAVE hard drives. Crap I'm old.

VM's eat up hard drive space.... (2)

gooneybird (1184387) | more than 3 years ago | (#34731036)

I have over 50 VMs - every major version of RH, Ubuntu, Debian, Gentoo, DOS (not so much anymore), Windows (back to Win 95, but mostly Win98 and newer). I use these for testing installation of various packages that I build/release for industry. That, plus multimedia will guarantee many more TB's of disk storage for me. I have found the reliability to be a factor in any drive > 1TB from any manufacturer. They all suck. I have had drives from WD, Seagarbage, DeathStars all fail if > 1TB. I am just putting together bigger disk farms using 1 TB drives. SATA is fine for what I need, I don't run more than a couple of VMs at once, I just need access to them occasionally.

Alternative? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 3 years ago | (#34731202)

TFA: Al Hoagland, who during his 28 years at IBM helped to create the world's first disk drives exclusively for the RAMAC computer, said what upset him at the time was that few thought disk drives had a future.

I wonder what they thought was the better alternative? Magnetic drums? They were perhaps mechanically simpler, but hard to stack.
 

Drive Down Memory (Storage) Lane.... (1)

LVSlushdat (854194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34731232)

The year was 1987, and the company I worked for at the time got hired to set up a fileserver for a client. The system was a Compaq desktop with 1 megabyte of RAM, a 300 megabyte ESDI drive, with Arcnet connectivity. I recall starting the Novell 2.1 "Compsurf" utility just before leaving on Friday night and having it just finishing up when I came in on Monday morning... Those were the days..

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