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Samsung HD Unit Bought By Seagate

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the slow-news-day dept.

Businesses 153

nanoflower followed up on a recent story about the unpredictable future of data storage. That story talked about Western Digital buying Hitachi, leaving just 4 players. Now: "Yet another hard drive company is going by the wayside, as Seagate is buying the Samsung HDD unit. Seagate is buying the unit for $1.375 billion (half in stock, half in cash)."

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Merge (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867234)

When will Seagate and WD merge now?
buying out toshiba's HDD division would not be too difficult for them

Re:Merge (3, Insightful)

CokoBWare (584686) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867306)

God please no.

Re:Merge (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867372)

They probably will about the same time an acceptable alternative technology becomes available from competitors. They will rebrand as "Seagate Digital Old Timey Mechanical Spinning Storage". Motto: "You can actually hear the platters go 'round and 'round."

Re:Merge (4, Insightful)

Hero Zzyzzx (525153) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867422)

Oh god, please no. I have had nothing but horrible experiences with Seagate drives recently under linux:

  • this [] bug hit me,
  • I had at least 4 RMAs on the same drive due to a similar "click of death",
  • I had a "click of death" on an iomega external HDD that was actually - you guessed it - seagate inside.

I don't get it. Seagate used to be great - WHY did they engineer drives to not work properly under linux? The idea of an HDD that doesn't work under linux is just wrong - like you have to actually try to make something that crappy.

I ended up just replacing the still under warranty Seagate drives with Western Digitals. Problems since then? Zero. LEAVE WESTERN DIGITAL ALONE!

PS: I must be dumb. Slashdot is not styling my bulletted list properly.

What did you expect from an Iomega drive? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867660)

Mac OS X too! (3, Informative)

david.emery (127135) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867662)

Not just Linux! I've had 50% failure rate (3 of 6 over the last 18 months) on Seagate 3.5" 1tb drives in a RAID enclosure connected to my Mac. I'll also note the continuing problems with the Momentus XT 2.5" hybrid drives; apparently the drive is optimized for Windows and works poorly at best (or fails more frequently) under Linux or Mac OS X. And Seagate's firmware update is basically a Windows solution that requires lots of extra effort to work on any other OS.

Re:Mac OS X too! (2)

glebovitz (202712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867984)

I have had a 100% with my Samsung drives with WIndows. They don't seem to withstand fists pounding on the laptop keyboard when trying to use the Microsoft Developer Tools.

Re:Mac OS X too! (1)

Cwix (1671282) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868328)

Thats funny, I had a similar issue with a hard drive failing due to fist pounding lol. I was just trying to get damn drivers working properly.

Re:Mac OS X too! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35869966)

I have also destroyed a computer trying to simply get a wifi card working under linux.

Re:Mac OS X too! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35868110)

I've also had the click of death issue with 50% of my Seagate hard drives. I used to buy Seagate drives exclusively until a few months ago when my RAID-1 array, made up of two 1.5TB Seagates, had one of the drives get the "click of death", which would make it click 3 to 5 times in a row every 20 to 40 seconds. Most annoying. Despite all this, the drive wasn't reporting any errors and seemed to work.

Anyway, I bought a new Seagate to replace it, and while I was replacing it, the other drive started the click of death. Fortunately, it was still able to read the data too, although it was stuttering a bit. So I while it was replicating to the new Seagate, I promptly ordered two Western Digital drives and swapped out both Seagates over the course of a weekend. Now, it runs quieter and cooler. The new Seagate drive is now sitting on a shelf as a cold spare.

Cool story bro.

Re:Merge (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867742)

Remember when Seagate bought Maxtor in 2006? You are really having trouble with Maxtor drives that are now branded Seagate. I'm going to guess you bought the less expensive ones. Before Maxtor and Seagate merged, I had about 12 drives in machines in my house. 5 of them were Maxtor and all of those failed within 18 months. Some of the others are still going. (Original Seagate and WD drives). Unfortunately it is hard to know if you are going to get the "good" or the "bad" Seagate drives now.

Re:Merge (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867780)

Yea, I don't think I'll ever get a Seagate again. First I got a refurbished HDD, which Seagate apparently likes to do. So you'll never know whether you'll get a used or a new one. The replacement was new. However after using it as a backup drive for hardly a year, I realised that the SMART report contained loads of errors and defects. That's a bit scary for a drive that's only used once a week and is supposed to keep my data safe.

Too bad Seagate bought Maxtor. They had some great drives that still work flawlessly after over half a decade of daily use. Oh well, what do you expect? If people always only buy the cheapest shit, that's going to be the only thing that survives.

Windows as well, Seagate External Drives are bad (5, Insightful)

Azarman (1730212) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868038)

I recently had a 1.5TB External Seagate drive. it worked for a few months then started clicking and within 2 weeks the thing failed. I did some google searching and really REALLY wish i had done more research before buying the drive because it is a very common problem. I even got a replacement and the same thing happened. I have read of someone having 5 replacements in 6 months. Seagate are aware there is a problem as they replace the drive instantly but no public recall.

Google Link to LOTS of web pages details the issues []
Seagate Forums [] [] []

I could supply more links, but from a personal view NEVER use seagate for anything but Throw away data. I was using it as a backup for my PC and in the end lost 500gb of data in the process.
Do not by Seagate hard drives

Re:Windows as well, Seagate External Drives are ba (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868968)

Nothing beats vigilance.

Run checks on the disks on a frequent and ongoing basis and dump them when they look like they are about to die.

You will flee from some brand to another and one day be bit in the arse when that next brand has it's next "moment in the limelight".

Re:Merge (2)

psm321 (450181) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868040)

And I say "oh God please no" for the opposite reason... horrible luck with WD drives. So I feel "LEAVE SEAGATE ALONE!" Let's just keep them separate and keep everyone happy :-D

Re:Merge (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35868358)

Yeah, me too. I've been using both Seagate & WD drives in a hot-swap backup system using rsnapshot, and the WD drives have died on me repeatedly--RMA them, get a replacement, and the replacement dies within days. Meanwhile the Seagates are still chugging along. So now instead of returning drives that are still under warranty, I've been buying new Seagates to replace the WD's as they die off.

Re:Merge (2)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868214)

So Seagate is like the Broadcom of hard drive manufacturers? Good to know.

In the mid '90s I'd had a lot of WD drives die on me and was kind of turned off of them, but I've slowly been using more since the early 2000s and they've all been very reliable. Now I'm running all WD drives in all of my computers (that have hard drives) and they've been very reliable, I've only had one drive made since 2000 fail, and it was run hard and then left in a box for at least 7 years, and failed when I tried to dump the data off last year (it was the only drive from an old Win98SE gaming machine, I wanted to turn it into a most of the files back but it failed before it got to the Windows folder so I lost my heavily customized OS, D'oh!!!).

My home server is actually running its OS from an ancient 8GB WD drive that runs very hot but it still works fine. So I guess WD is my go-to hard drive manufacturer now.

Re:Merge (2)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868226)

Just remembered: Actually that drive that failed was a Maxtor drive. So there you go.

Re:Merge (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867578)

oh don't say that. this rolling wreck of a hard drive brand will tank samsung like every other brand in their wake, and all we're going to be left with is toshiba and WD.

It's really all a shame. I remember when seagate was a good brand, and so was quantum. WD and toshiba were both crap. Amazing how things revolve. Back then I had a very tight budget and would buy seagates for their warranty and quality because I couldn't afford backup drives. Now the only thing seagate has going for them is their longer warranty, and by god you're probably going to get to use it, more than once.

I have backups now, but that's not an excuse to buy crappy drives, I don't need that kind of headache. I have enough drives around here now to have to RMA/replace a drive every now and then as it is.

Well crap (5, Interesting)

FrozenFOXX (1048276) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867238)

I've actually been a fan of my Samsung hard drives. So far they've outlasted every other drive manufacturer I've tried. Now I know that technically they all usually have roughly similar failure rates, but at least from personal experience right about every Samsung product of any kind I've bought I've always gotten great service on and great reliability from, something important for me with hard drives.

Seagate? Not so much. Well, guess it doesn't matter now as like it or not that's who we're getting. Still, I can't imagine a shrinking consumer drive market is very good for the consumer.

Re:Well crap (2)

lsllll (830002) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867396)

I remember when Seagate used to be the king of the HD market with such super drives as the ST-225 and ST-4096. Nowadays I avoid Seagate like the plague. They've put Maxtor to shame.

Re:Well crap (4, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867672)

Perhaps their low end line is bad *because* they bought Maxtor. Their enterprise line is still just fine, been cruising at ~1.5% AFR here for the last 5 years with ~90% Seagate disks.

Re:Well crap (1)

hedleyroos (817147) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869600)

Never thought of it that way. I hope you're right.

From experience my Samsung drives run slightly quieter than my WD and Seagate drives, and a lot cooler than both. In my HTPC (which has excellent cooling) the Samsung is at 27 C, and the Seagate at 35 C. In South Africa in summer.

Re:Well crap (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867764)

Me too. I bought 4 Samsung drives 3 or 4 years ago for an array, and all of them are still working fine in the various machines I've moved them to. I upgraded the array with 4 1TB WD drives, and one of them has already died after about 9 months. It was replaced with a Samsung.

Re:Well crap (1)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867880)

I'm sending a WD Green for an RMA today - it's from the first generation, which had locked the APM to park every 8 seconds on inactivity. It only started manifesting itself about 2 months ago, that's after about 3500 hours uptime. (Ironically, my other 1TB drive is Hitachi, now owned by WD...)

On the other hand, WD's customer support is stellar, and I've been using WD drives for my business all the time without a single complaint from customers. I'm not sorry to see Samsung go, although they were good.

Re:Well crap (2)

Spykk (823586) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868130)

The really great thing about Samsung is that they don't artificially make their entry level disks useless for RAID by disabling TLER [] . I have an array of spinpoints in my personal server and they do a great job for cheap.

Re:Well crap (2)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869032)

If you are using software RAID, then lack of TLER won't matter.

If you are using a proper RAID controller, than being cheap about your drives is a bit of a contradiction.

Re:Well crap (2)

cskrat (921721) | more than 3 years ago | (#35870022)

What does the 'I' in RAID stand for again?

Re:Well crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35868190)

Same here, long time customer and fan of Samsung HDDs. Maybe SSDs are mature and affordable enough by the time i need to replace my current lineup.

Re:Well crap (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868924)

I've generally been a fan too. Never had a Samsung drive permanently fail on me. Closest I cam was a 2TB drive that would stop responding until a reboot. Reboot, it'd come back for a while. I copied all my data off of it thinking it was failing. Then after looking at the SMART report I noticed that the max temperature of the drive was clocked in at 115 degrees Celcius. Turns out the front intake fan on the case had died and all my drives were getting warm. Replaced that and the issue went away completely.

Even though it was "failing", I still think it a testament to good design that the drive was able to withstand those temps without any apparent permanent damage.

I had a Samsung 250gb die on me, model #SP2504C (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35870030)

I bought on clearance @ CompUSA before they pulled up the rugs (left) the local mall, it was a very good deal, price-wise (& I got a 160gb model with it too, still works though)...

The thing "cut out" on me around 6 months after I bought it!

Still - I'll admit that my experience w/ hdd's has been like this, imo + experience @ least, & from my having been around PC's since 1990 - that's how it is w/ HDD's: Either they DIE nearly right off, or, run "forever"

(E.G.-> I've got 4 IDE WD "Caviar" disks, 212mb - 420mb still runnable here, for example, from iirc, circa 1991-1994).

Still - I don't know if this was just "bad luck" or, manufacturing issues, though.

However - I do know that an acquaintance of mine said to myself, in regard to this particular Samsung diskdrive model:

"Don't stack that drive too close to others, let it 'breathe', because that model's got known issues with heat"

I took that with a "grain-of-salt" because the guy's not exactly "super-tech", but still... his 'prophetic words' came out right!


P.S.=> No warranty was offered, CompUSA or Samsung on this one, because it was "clearance/closing doors" sale stuff... but, ticked me off some: I lost 250gb of storage (it's a 7,200rpm model - not exactly a "speed-demon" compared to say, WD Raptors/Velociraptors or SSD's, but... it was my "chevy truck" for storage purposes, that bit it!)... apk

More interesting... (2)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867240)

"In addition, the agreement will expand the strategic relationship between the two companies, as Samsung will be providing Seagate with a NAND flash memory for its solid state drives, solid state hybrid drives and other products.

Meanwhile, Seagate will supply disk drives to Samsung for PCs, notebooks and consumer electronics. "

That seems more interesting to me. With more exclusive partnerships and more efficient organization, maybe we'll see costs come down on some of their notebooks/ssd's.

Re:More interesting... (4, Insightful)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867316)

With more exclusive partnerships and more efficient organization, maybe we'll see costs come down on some of their notebooks/ssd's.

"Exclusive partnerships" always send up a monopoly warning flag for me. That usually means higher profits for producers, and higher costs for the end user.

Re:More interesting... (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867546)

I don't see how... they aren't the only tech companies offering those products to the market. Look at AMD/ATI buyout/partnership. Nvidia and Intel are still in the game...

So is Hitachi and a bunch more electronics manufacturers.

I would only be worried if Seagate now has exclusive partnerships with almost *all* PC/notebook manufacturers like Intel did for a while.

Re:More interesting... (3, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868202)

Hitachi GST is in the process of being acquired by WD, so if in the mean time Seagate is acquiring Samsung's HDD lines, then we've seen the amount of choice shrink greatly in only a few months.

Why!?!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867254)

In the beginning, Seagate was awesome. They bought Maxtor, and Maxtor's suckiness followed them into Seagate. Now they are buying Samsung. Are they expecting the average quality to go up?

What is the point of buying out competitors, when their products are not even in the same ballpark of quality?

(Although since the Maxtor purchase, maybe Samsung is a good match)

I used to own Seagate stock. I'm glad I jumped ship.

Re:Why!?!?! (3, Insightful)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867370)

What is the point of buying out competitors, when their products are not even in the same ballpark of quality?

Because people are paid bonuses, and bonuses are based on short term gains.

This applies to modern capitalism in general.

Re:Why!?!?! (1)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868274)

Not just bonuses. When companies merge there is an excess of executive managers who will get nice golden parachutes, and to avoid making being fired looked good, the managers that stay gets even bigger cash-prizes for not quiting. The negotiation for how to translate stocks in the merger is also a good opportunity for executive managers to get awarded a nice percentage of the new company (if they don't already have one). All in all this makes merging the most profitable move possible for any CEO. The effects it has on the rest of company are less clear-cut.

Re:Why!?!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867404)

Maxtor used to be decent until they bought Quantum; remember the Big Foot? I had some Maxtor drives that lasted years (4.3GB and 17GB). Then they had that DiamondMax 9, I think it was: saw systems go through lots of those drives with the black shells. Usually the motor bearings would make lots of noise and fail.

Now that I think of it, all those IBM DeathStar drives I went through all those years ago had black shells too. Maybe black anodized aluminum shells are a bad omen for hard drives.

I've generally had good luck with Seagate, though.

Aha! (4, Funny)

dimethylxanthine (946092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867272)

Nobody expects a Seagate acquisition!

Re:Aha! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867446)

Well their chief weapon is surprise, you know.

Re:Aha! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867520)

Yeah, I was very surprised when the HD started to make weird noises and died, I will give them that.

Re:Aha! (1)

Barryke (772876) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867542)

Surprise! I'm failing, making ticking noises, making tea, and mostly not working like a very robust Samsung HDD does!

Re:Aha! (1)

confused one (671304) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867954)

Well, at least the Seagate drive had the common decency to make the click-of-death noise, to let you know it failed. Imagine if they simply stopped working! Where would you be then?

Re:Aha! (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867652)

Yes of course, the Holy Hard Drive of Antioch! It's one of the sacred relics Steven Ballmer carries with him!

Re:Aha! (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868342)

LMAO, mod parent Funny. That was truly unexpected XD

Re:Aha! (1)

dimethylxanthine (946092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868426)

I mean they probably do...
How many HD makers now - 2?

Seagate has been flirting with Samsung for awhile (3, Informative)

calagan800xl (1001055) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867312)

Back in 2008, Seagate was already fitting its FreeAgent Go 500GB USB HDD with Samsung hard drives: []

Darn! (5, Insightful)

shic (309152) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867480)

Seagate and Samsung are my favourite two drive manufacturers at the moment... I'd have preferred they remain separate.

If I'm thinking about my data, I want - above all - for it to be reliably stored. With the best will in the world, eventually every drive fails... So... I tend to buy different makes of drives in pairs - from different suppliers... the logic is that it is far less likely that both drives will fail simultaneously - leaving my raid-1 data intact.

If Seagate and Samsung share manufacturing/storage/distribution, then the independence of Seagate and Samsung drives vanishes... forcing me to go to another less-preferred vendor.

I wonder when these consolidations will stop being a good idea? I definitely hope that it will be possible to buy independently manufactured drives in future.

Re:Darn! (1)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867712)

I wonder when these consolidations will stop being a good idea?

Good idea for who? For you, me and every other buyer they never were a good idea. For high level execs and investors of the buyee who get golden handshakes and massive buyouts, and for the would-be-monopolists of the buyer then they'll never stop being a good idea.

Re:Darn! (3, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868394)

I wonder when these consolidations will stop being a good idea?

Long before this. There definitely needs to be more than 3 HDD manufacturers in the world. I wouldn't even consider 7 an especially healthy number.

Unlike the car market, computer component makers aren't especially under pressure from the used market. Almost any used car the last 40+ years goes highway speeds. Other things are a bonus most of the time. Can't say the same with computers - a drive from 5 years ago is beyond suspect in terms of reliability and often just doesn't cut it in terms of speed and capacity. Other than reliability, the same goes with all other components except maybe monitors and cases/psu.

Continually chiseling down manufacturers is not a good thing. Only thing worse is the CPU market but thankfully arm CPUs became viable for more than dumb phones within the last decade. Small comfort if Intel were to kill AMD but at least an alternate route.

Re:Darn! (0)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868810)

I think it's out of evolution. Spinning rust HDDs are only really good at one thing - massive capacity. With the rising popularity of SSDs (despite their cost), it's the only thing that a hard disk really has over an SSD.

Capacity growth of hard drives is slso slowing down (faster than Moore's Law still) but even then it isn't sustainable.

The HDD market isn't big enough anymore to sustain so many players, and even things that once used hard drives may start using SSDs. For example, take a few years ago the iPod Mini which got bested by the iPod Nano. Or how the iPod Classic is basically stagnating (Toshiba only recently started manufacturing a 250GB hard drive in that form factor - but the 120GB will be done in by an iPod Touch wielding 128GB of flash).

Hard drives are a very mature technology - they'll still be around, but much of the growth is gone, and the big players will start consolidating as companies migrate to other growth areas.

Re:Darn! (2)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868822)

a drive from 5 years ago is beyond suspect in terms of reliability and often just doesn't cut it in terms of speed and capacity

It's been well over 4 years since the first 1TB drive came and we're currently at 3TB with no significant improvements in sight. They're still at 7200 RPM with only minor performance differences due to higher density - in terms of IOPS they're almost the same. I would say the capacity and speed is just fine, only the reliability is questionable. But then nobody really cares as long as the solution is to buy a new, much bigger and much cheaper HDD. But if new disks stop being significantly better, then we'll start caring more about how long they last. Though personally I'm more concerned about how how long my SSD will last...

So who do I buy drives from now? (1)

leathered (780018) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867490)

Almost every HD manufacturer has had their ups and downs with their product with regards to relibility but Samsung have always seemed to me to be one of the better ones; even if their performance doesn't quite match their competitors. Seagate went to shit after they acquired Maxtor so I'm hoping that Samsung will rub off on Seagate and not the other way 'round.

Re:So who do I buy drives from now? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867674)

WD enterprise line (5-year support) with sandforce/intel SSD's for booting.
Then add more ssd's as price drops or speed needs go way up.

Re:So who do I buy drives from now? (1)

The Grim Reefer2 (1195989) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869104)

Almost every HD manufacturer has had their ups and downs with their product with regards to relibility but Samsung have always seemed to me to be one of the better ones; even if their performance doesn't quite match their competitors. Seagate went to shit after they acquired Maxtor so I'm hoping that Samsung will rub off on Seagate and not the other way 'round.

Agreed, hard drive manufacturers have been very cyclical over the years. I've also noticed that there really is not good way to tell if a drive will be good from a specific manufacturer. This seems to be more dependent on the luck of the individual. Personally I've owned drives from every manufacturer currently in existence, and many that no longer are.

In my case I've had every WD drive fail earlier than expected with the exception of one. In several cases I've had the same model fail so many times under warranty that I was up "upgraded" to a better line by WD. I will give WD credit for their customer service. They were always responsive when I've had issues with their drives while under warranty.

IBM/Hitachi have been a mixed bag. Of the last three IBM Deskstars I owned, one failed.suddenly and another started clicking prior to me retiring all of them. I also used two Hitachi SATA drives of which one failed early. I have an IBM SCSI drive that is close to a decade old and is still kicking.

Seagate has been pretty good for me. Of the dozens of drives I purchased over the years, I just recently sent a USB powered external in for warranty replacement. Otherwise they've all lasted as long as expected. I currently have at least a dozen running within my network.

Samsung has been good as well. I purchased 7 or 8 of their drives in the last couple of years, and so far none have failed.

Maxtor and Fujitsu have both been about 50/50 for me. Although I have a 12 GB Maxtor in my firewall that has been kicking for over a decade now.

Quantum made a fantastic product IME. I still have several in boxes that I retired. I also have a 15K RPM SCSI that is fairly old in a system.

I think my favorite HDD company was Micropolis though. I never had a drive problem with them and they performed great.

I *was* a Samsung HDD fanboy, Seagate hater. (1)

Barryke (772876) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867534)

This is not funny.

Re:I *was* a Samsung HDD fanboy, Seagate hater. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868244)

My next HDD was probably going to be a Samsung, but mainly because only them and Seagate have had the stones lately to offer a 5 year warranty on their drives. That was a bit ago, but Seagate had that bad batch of 1tb drives so I'm not sure how much faith I have in them.

Flash memory milestones? (1)

It's the tripnaut! (687402) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867540)

This goes to show that Samsung could quite possibly have just reached milestones in their flash memory production, which is why they are willing to let go of their HD unit.

A shame (1)

chihowa (366380) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867548)

Well that blows. Samsung drives were great for reliability while still running cool and quiet. Somehow I doubt Seagate will up their quality with the Samsung tech.

On a side note, I remember when Seagate drives were top notch. What happened to them? With Samsung out of the picture and the alternatives being WD and Hitachi, I guess they are at the top again...

Re:A shame (2)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867934)

Hitachi is WD.

Re:A shame (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35868128)

I bought an 80GB Hitachi Travelstar to my Amiga once. It is still working fine.

Never heard anything good about WD.

Cream rising, Crap sinking (1, Insightful)

mauriceh (3721) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867564)

Seagate and Samsung HDD merge = Crap gets bigger
WD and Hitachi GST merge = Cream gets better.

I will tell you where this goes:
Seagate goes broke within 18 months

Re:Cream rising, Crap sinking (1)

Rolgar (556636) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867942)

I like Samsung hardware. When I built my machine 5 years ago, I went with 2 160GB low noise Samsung drives (SATA 1.0 when it was rather rare), and I love them. It's a shame that this is happening. I really think we as customers would be better off if mergers and acquisitions by a competitor or conglomerate were prohibited.

Re:Cream rising, Crap sinking (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868276)

Mergers haven't been about the consumer in a very long time. Chances are that if you're hearing about a merger and aren't deeply embedded in a regulatory agency or on Wall Street that it's not something that's going to be good for the consumers.

Mergers are like sending jobs offshore, it's got nothing to do with providing a better product or one that's cheaper, it's all about lining the pockets of the executives that did it.

Re:Cream rising, Crap sinking (1)

mauriceh (3721) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869446)

Mergers are inevitable.
Some companies/divisions win, some lose.

Samsung could not make money with HDDs, probably economy of scale.
Plus they tried ( and failed) to crack the enterprise space.

OT: Whatever happened to Quantum ? (1)

Fireshadow (632041) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867630)

Whatever happened to Quantum? Reason I ask is I recently did a data recovery off an old Quantum 40 Gb drive. Drive came from a Gateway desktop that had an Intel CPU and RAMBUS RAM.

Re:OT: Whatever happened to Quantum ? (1)

Teese (89081) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867736)

According to wikipedia [] , they where bought by Maxtor in 2001, then Maxtor was bought by Seagate in 2005.

Re:OT: Whatever happened to Quantum ? (1)

joe_garage (1664999) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867748)

"In April 2001, Maxtor Corporation acquired our hard disk drive division..."

Re:OT: Whatever happened to Quantum ? (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867816)

Bought out by Maxtor, I believe.

Talk about HD mfgr here (0)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867644)

Could someone comment on hard drive manufacturing?

In some areas of mass production, there exists precisely one manufacturing plant in the world, located in mainland China. Then, worldwide, fifty (no exaggeration) importing and marketing companies order microscopically different batches of the same model, slap a localized sticker on it, and pretend it's theirs. An example I'm well aware of is the small metal lathe market specifically the 7x14 and its much bigger brothers. Its always comical to watch people whom don't know anything about the manufacturing situation argue how their importer's model is oh so superior to another importer's model, not knowing they're basically the same. Like arguing the build quality at one Toyota dealership is orders of magnitude better than another Toyota dealership, as if each dealership has their own assembly line in the back room.

Are hard drives like that, where one big ole factory in China makes ALL of them and Seagate / Samsung / WD / Hitachi just slap stickers on them and watch the /.ers argue over which is "better"?

Yes yes I know that in 1965 the only mfgr was IBM in the USA, who cares I'm talking about current production...

Re:Talk about HD mfgr here (1)

herojig (1625143) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867738)

All our Seagate Barracudas are made in Thailand. The failure rate for the >1tb has been below norm (none), and for 1tb, about average (occasional). Darn good iron, if that's your thing.

Re:Talk about HD mfgr here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867766)

I work for a big HDD manufacturer. At least Seagate and WD have their own separate factories in China, among other places. All HDDs are not made in the same place. Overall both companies are highly vertically integrated having internal heads, media, etc production.

Samsung on the other hand had to buy most components from vendors and had poor vertical integration.

Re:Talk about HD mfgr here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867786)

Most hard disks these days come from farm-reared robots, for top quality disks you need to hunt wild robots.

Re:Talk about HD mfgr here (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867818)

They're separate manufacturers. They all have similar technology, but they're most certainly not manufactured in the same plant and just shipped around.

How much did Seagate actually pay (5, Funny)

Fireshadow (632041) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867658)

after the mail in rebate ?

Re:How much did Seagate actually pay (1)

Luyseyal (3154) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868566)

They mailed in the receipt, the UPC from the box, and the required form and expect an 8 - 10 week turnaround on the $30 check. There is an optional Visa gift card option, but it reduces the total value to $22, so they opted for the check.


Sign of the times? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867706)

Given the current SSD prices and sizes, I will give the hdd technology another 3-4 years depending on how far they still can push the storage space forward then it is end of life. Could this be the end of the road for the given hdd manufacturers. Samsung and Hitchachi probably sold out because they saw an end of the road for perpendicular recording and did not want to invest into the next follow up technology anymore given how fast the ssd market is growing.
Seagate and WD either want to stay in the market because they have something up their sleeves or want to milk the cow and can see another return on investment. Either way the writing for then end of classical hds is on the wall. Not this year not next year, but within the next five years.


Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867756)

Whoopdeedodah !! More chinese crap for the masses. I'll stick with my AMERICAN MADE Conner until they stop running, then I'll build my own !!

4 Players? (1)

vlado4 (819670) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867774)

Summary says there are 4 HDD companies left. Who are the 4? I can think of Seagate, WD, Toshiba.....

Re:4 Players? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35868134)

Summary says there were 4 left after WD bought Hitachi.

Seagate, WD, Toshiba, Hitachi, and Samsung were the 5.

Then WD bought Hitachi, so there were 4.

And after Seagate buys Samsung there will be 3.

Re:4 Players? (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868240)

Summary says there are 4 HDD companies left.

Who are the 4?

I can think of Seagate, WD, Toshiba.....

The summary says there were four companies left after WD bought Hitachi. So the fourth one was Samsung.

Re:4 Players? (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868320)

According to the wikipedia that fourth is TrekStor. Never heard of them myself. And if you're being somewhat more liberal with the term HDD, then there are others which deal exclusively in SSDs, which isn't what you were getting at, but should be imporatant in the future. With the list getting that short of manufacturers it's probably that we'll start to see stagnation. Whereas up until now it seems to mostly just be quality that's been suffering instead of performance and capacity.

Re:4 Players? (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869040)

The largest SSD I could find [] is 2TB and costs $8200. If it follows Moore's law, then the price of that drive should hit $70 -- achieving parity with *today's* 2TB magnetic media drive -- in about 10 years.

The fact that manufacturers are consolidating, and hence various avenues of R&D are becoming fewer, is very much a bad thing, not only for the price we're paying for storage capacity directly, but indirectly through all the web-based services we enjoy as well. Sure, multi-TB seems like a lot today, but the same was true of multi-GB fifteen years ago, and multi-MB thirty years ago. But there are many among us who have no trouble filling that capacity and more, and when it comes to technology, today's corner case is frequently tomorrow's norm.

Back at Ya (5, Funny)

BSalita (1000791) | more than 3 years ago | (#35867810)

$1.375 billion or $990 million formatted.

Re:Back at Ya (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868364)

Is that Mac or PC formatted?

Consolidation of failures? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867830)

Let's roll back the clock a bit
Maxtor (which made terrible drives) bought Quantum (which made good drives)
Seagate (which also makes terrible drives) bought Maxtor (which made better drives than pre-Quantum maxtor)
Seagate then starts making less terrible drives, and buys Samsung (which makes passable drives)
So the end result is we've had a consolidation of drive manufacturers which make low-end drives. Maybe that will squeeze some of the low-priced-low-reliability drives out of the market since they're no longer competing.

I'm not suggesting that segate and samsung intentionally make bad drives, but rather the drives they sell in the low-priced segment tend to be the loudest, slowest, least reliable drives I've ever had to deal with. One drive in my system right now, the error counter in the S.M.A.R.T system is incrementing by the thousands, where as the WD drives aren't incrementing at all. The drive seems to work, and isn't reporting that it's going to fail, but this just doesn't seem right.

Yes I see the inevitability of drives with moving parts disappearing, but not until a fundamental change in OS design happens.
1) No more swap files. This is the largest reason why we can't move to SSD's, because computers don't yet come with enough RAM, and OS's like Windows and Linux throw data into the swap file continuously. FreeBSD on the other hand you can have an uptime of 2 years and never consume any pagefile out of the box. They keyword here is "out of the box."
2) No more temporary files. How I see this working is that future "high end" SSD drives come with two partitions, a large writeable partition that is directly writeable, and a smaller RAM based copy-on-write partition that only commits changes to the NAND upon shutdown or power loss. In *nix'isms this would be the /var/run , /tmp and maybe the swap partition. Low-end drives would omit the BBU and have smaller/slower RAM, so that accidental power loss would just wipe the pagefile/temporary storage, and tout it as a security feature.
3) Changes in filesystem design to support wear leveling. None of the current file systems are any good at this, particularly with journaling. The best I could see happening is that all the OS manufacturers agree to support a single file system standard for NAND devices, unfortunately that's probably not what's going to happen. The problem with current file system's is the need to change so many bits uselessly (eg Access time and Modify time) while doing absolutely nothing to the file. Every time you "Search" for a file you end up wearing down every file on the hard drive. This has got to stop. As with #2, file modification/access time's need to be stored in a RAM section of the drive and written only when shutting down.

Re:Consolidation of failures? (1)

mikechant (729173) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868588)

This is the largest reason why we can't move to SSD's, because computers don't yet come with enough RAM, and OS's like Windows and Linux throw data into the swap file continuously.

My moderately crappy 3+ year old Dell 530 desktop system has only 2Gb RAM and I've *never* seen it use any swap (running Ubuntu 10.4 at present). I only have a swap partition in case I want to use 'hibernate' (which is pretty much never).

I can have the following running with no swapping: Firefox (about 6 tabs), music player, Video rendering (standard def), DVD burner, CD ripper, OpenOffice.

I'm sure I *could* get it to swap if I added some more demanding applications, but I think the above shows that Linux at least does not require swap any more for most people's typical needs.

Re:Consolidation of failures? (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868766)

You remember things differently than I do. First Quantum made shitty drives, which was bought by Maxtor which made decent drives. Maxtor became shitty, and was bought by Seagate which made decent drives. Then Seagate started making shitty drives, and got bought by Samsung. Following this trend I see no reason to believe Samsung won't become shitty as well.

Re:Consolidation of failures? (1)

mikechant (729173) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868854)

The problem with current file system's is the need to change so many bits uselessly (eg Access time and Modify time) while doing absolutely nothing to the file.

The 'noatime' parameter has been available and widely used for Linux ext2/3/4 filesystems (particularly large data partitions) for years to prevent access time updates.
Normally there would be no real gain from turning off modify time updating since you're typically updating other data in the same disc block anyhow (e.g. file size) when you modify the file. (Unless you've got some peculiar broken filesystem that updates modify times even when the file hasn't changed?)

please god no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35867988)


I finally found a HD brand that doesn't suck and then this happens!!!! :(

About even.... (1)

scharkalvin (72228) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868092)

I've had both good and bad luck with BOTH Seagate and WD. I am currently using a Seagate Momentus in thinkpad and it works fine (except for the fact that the thinkpad bios checks for an IBM watermark and won't directly boot anything BUT a drive with IBM firmware, there is a work around for this that involves two keystrokes during powerup but that's another story). I had a WD go bad on me (it failed gradually enough to give me time to save my data) and I had a Seagate 3.5" model fail due to a firmware bug. Seagate did repair this on their nickel.

Samsung (1)

Grindalf (1089511) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868448)

I think Samsung toys are good. Their kit has (in my humble experience) rock solid performance under adverse radio / heat / vibrational conditions. Almost mill spec. I think it would be good for both parties.

I'm disappointed. (1)

whovian (107062) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868460)

I have refused to buy Seagate since I became uncomfortable with their apparent lack-to-slow response to their user forum about reports of HDD bricking. Granted, there were several manufacturing sites and firmware versions about. Quality control issues AFAICT. I own one of the affected drives (I *think* so, since there are conflicting reports) but am afraid of using it for anything critical. Since then I've needed to buy ~10 TB in HDD -- all Samsung drives in fact, and they have given me zero problems thus far. In the past, I've not had problems with WD, but that was back in the day with 80 GB IDE HDD. Anyway, I fear what market consolidation will bring.

Oligopolies Suck (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868590)

In general you need at least 7 players to have sufficient competition. The industries often claim they need to scale large to be efficient, but with a few exceptions, this is a bogus claim.

On the flip side, sucky hard-drives will likely trigger advances in solid-state drives (which I hope also don't oligopolate on us too).

Reason for click (1)

bjb_admin (1204494) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868602)

Does anyone here know what is actually causing the clicking? Thrown head? Bad board on the drive? Miniscule error on track 0 of the disk? I know of a person who had the click of death on their hard drive and sent it in for data recovery. It took about a week but the recovery company was able to recover 99% of the data (I don't know why 1% was missing, perhaps just junk files that didn't matter, but all the documents were there). Cost was about $1800.00 for the 200Gb worth of data.

Re:Reason for click (1)

cforciea (1926392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869848)

Frequently it is either the drive head hitting the edge of its available movement space because it misses track 0 and keeps going, or the needle itself making contact with the platter. If the needle hits platter, it ends up ruining data wherever it lands, which could explain the 1% data loss.

Wondering (1)

ideaz (1981092) | more than 3 years ago | (#35868798)

now what would people rant about on the deal sites

Not all that bad from a competition standpoint (1)

bobdotorg (598873) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869390)

Losing two major players in a five firm industry is usually a bad thing with respect to competition / antitrust.

However, in this case it's not that bad - the recent entrance of additional companies (such as Intel) making SSDs will, over time, mitigate the effects.

one word (1)

clickclickdrone (964164) | more than 3 years ago | (#35869960)

Noooooooooooooo! :-(
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