Computerworld – Seagate Tuesday released its highly anticipated 3TB desktop hard disk drive, the 3.5-in Barracuda XT, thus eliminating the need to purchase extra hardware or software to overcome the previous 2.1TB drive barrier.

Last spring, Seagate had said it would ship its first 3TB HDD, the Constellation ES, by the end of 2010. That drive, for data center servers. has yet to ship.

Western Digital came out with its first 3TB internal desktop drive in January, the Western Digital Caviar Green. Western Digital had its own workaround for the 2.1TB limitation: a HighPoint Rocket 620 internal half-height SATA card, which it ships with the 3TB drive. The card has two SATA 3.0 ports and handles the emulation, if needed, to allow software to work with the larger 3TB hard drive.

Unreal… that’s 3 million megabytes! I can remember when I thought my 300MB HDD was huge!

  1. MikeN says:

    Isn’t 2TB limit built into software?

  2. bobbo, google it, GDI! Just google IT!!! says:

    What makes this “good news” is the resulting continuing drop in prices for the 2GB disk and others. On sale, I think now the 2GB disks are cheaper than DvD’s to store data on.

    My film/music collection has gone from 130 lineal feet of video/cassette tape, to 10 feet of DvD, and now to 2 feet of Hard Drives.

    What can I do with all this space?

  3. Marc Perkel says:

    If you do the math a gigabyte of storage costs about the same as 3 sheets of paper.

  4. BigBoyBC says:

    I remember my first HD was a 5.25″ 40 megabyte drive, cost me $200. I thought that was good size for the price. Ah memories.

  5. Marc Perkel says:

    I paid $750 for a 90k floppy drive in 1980.

  6. Mac Guy says:

    300 MB? My first drive was 160 MB, and I thought I’d never fill it up.

    This was before internet porn, of course.

  7. Somebody_Else says:

    Er, Hitachi and Western Digital have had 3TB drives out for a little while now. Why is it suddenly exciting when Seagate does it?

  8. Nobody says:

    I don’t think 2TB was particularly a barrier – added to which it will only be 2790Gb once you take marketing speak into account.

  9. Uncle Dave says:

    Thirty years ago, I was writing software for the Apple ][. Four floppy drives to hold
    1. OS,
    2. the compiler,
    3. the source code,
    4. the object code.

    Then Apple came out with a 5 MByte hard disk. It was heaven!

    That job was after the one where I was working on a mini computer with a washing machine sized, 50 MByte, multi-platter disk drive that had just gotten back from being repaired when I started. It had had a head crash which caused it to explode, sending shards into the concrete wall.

  10. Hewhomustnotbeflamed says:

    Call me when if/when it comes in 15000 rpms.

  11. Angel H. Wong says:

    And just in time for Windows 8.

  12. bobbo, OK, I'll bite says:

    #3–Marc Perkel==where do you buy your paper?

  13. Somebody_Else says:


    Won’t happen at this size in the near future, there are too many disk platters needed to achieve 3TB. SSD’s are a better solution if you need low seek times and SSD prices are almost down to the same level as 15k SAS drives. I imagine you’ll see the 10-15k RPM drive market vanish before too long.

    Besides, for most users increasing the data density does more to increase performance than increasing the disk RPMs. Seek times are fine at 7200RPM. These 3TB drives get better linear reads than the highest capacity WD VelociRaptors.

  14. /T. says:

    Circa ’81 or ’82

    10 MB Winchester Hard Drive

    $1,000’s !!

    Had to have some “guru” come & hook it up for us.

    This chart shows HDD’s since 1980.

    Holy crap, I’m getting old!


  15. dcphill says:

    Personnaly, I am afraid to stow all my data on a 2 or even 3 TB hard drive because there is too much to lose if the hard drive hickups.
    I’m still using an old Seagate 35gb HD for
    temporary backup. It came from my oldest and first PC. I think high quality CD/DVD is the best storage device. For pictures My old Kodakcrome film is the all time best.There’s got to be a better non mechanical/magnetic storage devices.

  16. AlrightyThen says:

    Seagate? EFF THEM.

  17. bobbo, OK, I'll bite says:

    #15–dephill==sharing your concern, isn’t the process to have a “multiple backup strategy” so that when one backup fails, you replace it from another backup?

    Years ago I bought some cheapo DvD’s and made 200 disks. They all tested/played fine after burning but 6 months later, 90% fail rate. Then I switched to Taiyo Yuden and I’m happy to report not a single good burn verified disk has gone bad in 10 years now.

    I am reburning my CD music collection (about 600 Disks) to DVD format which will be backup’d on 1-2 hard drives. So, my music will be backup’d 3 deep. Worth it to keep that music available even if I hardly ever listen to it. I do note my 50 year old cassette tapes are failing. Too much magnetic transfer as the tape lies along side itself. With over 2300 cassettes, I never re wound them twice a year to prevent that corruption. “It’s been a long time coming…”

  18. Tom says:

    First drive: A 10Mb, 130Msec seek, 5 1/4″ drive bought at the Computer Faire in SF in 1980 I believe it was…

  19. chuck says:

    After doing some research, I have discovered that there is more than 3TB of pr0n on the internet. So I need a bigger drive. And some lotion.

  20. Scott says:

    Isn’t that 3 thousand MB (3072 to be more accurate)(not 3 Million?)

    [3,000 MB is 3GB. – ed.]

  21. Framitz says:

    Was that an Atari Drive?
    I paid only $500 for mine in ’81.

  22. bobbo, observing that powers of 10 are awesome says:

    Scott: just what is a TeraByte/Gigabyte/Megabyte?

    Wouldn’t 3000 MB be 3000GB’s and not even close to a Terabyte?

    Yea, I know. Just laugh.

  23. bobbo, observing that powers of 10 are awesome says:

    Ha, ha. I did it too. ==== 3 Gigs.

  24. ± says:

    Bought a 5MB drive for my Tandy TRS80 in 1982 for $2,500. (pre-funny money dollars)

  25. Awake says:

    I remember working with a military hard drive, considered very advanced for it’s time. It was a single platter, and had 16 separate heads in fixed positions. Each head was used for one fixed track. Imagine two brake drums with a spinning platter inside, with eight heads attached to each drum. It was about that size and weight. It held something like 5 MB and was used for sonar data. Spun at 300 RPM or something. It was so primitive that it could be opened up for service, such as replacing a head or the platter. Cost a gazillion dollars.

  26. Dallas says:

    Some day we’ll remember spinning platter technology as we now look at tape drives.
    SSD’s are the future with spinning disks as online but archival storage !

  27. msbpodcast says:

    My first hard disk was a 5 megabyte drive for my Mac 512KE (with an extra meg and a half of RAM addressable on the controller board.)

    Now I’m sitting in my SOHO with 4+TB on three computers and backups are just as important as it was with the 5MB drive.

    They just take l-o-n-g-e-r.

  28. msbpodcast says:

    One of the weirder devices I ever saw used for storage was a Huges Aerospace persistent display which worked like a vector graphic CRT that could detect if it was scanning over a segment that had previously been written on.

    Two different write thresholds for 0 or 1 and a third for reading.

    It could read at full speed, write at half speed and had no moving parts; though the phosphor degraded over time.

    Never mind what it was for, but if you guessed this was put together by spook propeller-heads for Howard Huges himself you win a Cupie Doll.

  29. bobbo, observing that powers of 10 are awesome says:

    Ready–you reminded me of my first computer: punch card encyclopedia from Britannica. My Dad was in the AF and really into computers==the FIRST GENERATION. After using the nail to do my mechanical sorts, I kinda lost interest for a few decades until I got my first computer at work. 100 miles from Silicon Valley and the Computer Revolution was fully established before I noticed it==and I’ve been conceptually clueless ever since.

    Armies invade the Middle East for no real changes, but Twitter brings revolution. Who saw that how long ago?


Bad Behavior has blocked 7706 access attempts in the last 7 days.