Western Digital recently added a RAID-busting 4TB drive to its enterprise lineup, hitting their commercial-grade storage lines up another notch. The new drives, likely a result of some solid research paired with the company’s recent acqusition of Hitachi’s hard drive unit (Hitachi has had a couple of 4TB models on the market for close to a year now), make WD the third hard drive manufacturer to bring such a device to market (after Hitachi and Seagate).
The 4TB drives, members of WD’s RE lineup, will be available in both SAS and SATA orientations, a common property of enterprise storage.
Packing up to 33% more capacity into the same footprint as previous drives can be a boon for space and storage-cramped server farm administrators. WD proposes that a ‘single enterprise rack’ can now store up to a stunning 2.4PB of data.
2.4 petabytes is equal to 2400 1TB drives, and is capable of storing about one-tenth of the data generated and uploaded to the Internet every single day (as of 2012), or about half of the Library of Congress’ digital collection.
Given their enterprise nature, WD is offering the drives at enterprise prices. They seem expensive to consumer-trained eyes, but it’s important to realize that the benefits they may bring to Big Data generally outweigh any increased costs.
|WD RE Enterprise Hard Drives|
|WD4001FYYG||4 TB||SAS 6 Gb/s||$479|
|WD3001FYYG||3 TB||SAS 6 Gb/s||$369|
|WD3001FYYG||2 TB||SAS 6 Gb/s||$249|
|WD3001FYYG||1 TB||SAS 6 Gb/s||$139|
|4 TB||SATA 6 Gb/s||$459|
|WD3000FYYZ||3 TB||SATA 6 Gb/s||$349|
|WD4000FYYZ||2 TB||SATA 6 Gb/s||$229|
In addition to the higher cost, you can get higher speeds, too – the new drives are capable of transfer rates over 180 MB/s.