A few weeks ago, there were rumors of a drive from Seagate that the first 3 TB hard drive would be on the way soon. Now there is confirmation of that from Seagate, but perhaps not before some problems are ironed out that many thought were no longer a problem.
It seems like each time we cross a drive barrier in the BIOS, or the Operating System, where there is a chance to eliminate further problems ever again, no one takes the time to make those changes. Instead we get another band-aid, which lasts until drives get big enough or otherwise change enough to push the band-aid away.
This time the barrier is at 2.1 TB.
Going on the record, Barbara Craig, Seagate’s senior product manager, has stated that the US storage supplier is indeed planning to announce a 3TB hard drive, which will be targeted at the enterprise market, by the end of this year.
Reaching the 3TB milestone is quite problematic unfortunately as booting off a 2.1+ TB drive requires the use of an operating system that supports Long LBA addressing (like the Windows Vista/7 64bit, Linux) and that’s probably why Seagate has decided to first go after the server segment and not ‘regular’ consumers.
Seagate’s first 3TB HDD is expected to be part of the Constellation ES line and boast a SAS (Serial Attached SCSI) 6.0 Gbps interface but these details have not been confirmed – all that’s clear now is that the 3TB barrier will go down in 2010.
So, once again we are held back by an artificial barrier that was not thought about beforehand, or simply put away as something to worry about later. Add-in card manufacturers made a name for themselves, and a killing on products they sold back in the old days. I know, as I sent a lot of business to Promise, as well as helping with the debugging of some of their cards which allowed people to break barriers before the time of the flashable BIOS chip.
This time around, it will be upon the motherboard manufacturers to put up new BIOS revisions as well as help from Microsoft, as those who wish to keep your business will be coming out with the updates for their older motherboards without much push from customers. As for Microsoft, they will not want to shut out too many, or they will anger more than they prod to upgrade – they may possibly get away with doing nothing for Windows XP, but they will have to update for 32 bit Vista and 7, or there will be far too many upset customers.
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