Original Link: http://www.anandtech.com/show/8238/hitachi-expands-ultrastar-c10k-family-with-18-tb-12-gbps-sas-hdd

HGST (a Western Digital company) today launched the Ultrastar C10K1800, a 10000 RPM hard drive in the 2.5" form factor targeting enterprise / data center applications. Earlier versions of the Ultrastar C10K family topped out at 1.2 TB and came with a 6 Gbps SAS connector. The new member has a 1.8 TB capacity and comes with a cutting-edge 12 Gbps SAS connection. With this introduction, HGST is moving all capacities in the Ultrastar C10K family to 12 Gbps SAS.

Even though flash storage is grabbing all the headlines right now, there are many applications where the premium for IOPS doesn't need to be paid, and cost per GB wins out. It is this market segment that HGST hopes to target with the Ultrastar C10K1800.

In order to improve performance over previous generation Ultrastar C10K HDDs, HGST has put in a 'media cache' - a disk-based caching technology providing a large non-volatile area for data storage. HGST claims that there is a significant improvement in write performance even at high workloads (compared to NAND-based caches). Improvements are in the order of 2.5x for random writes and 23% for sequential accesses when compared to older Ultrastar C10K drives.

HGST's Disk-based Media Cache

The high level operation of the disk-based media cache is explained in the above picture. While HGST wasn't ready to comment on how much of the drive capacity was being used as a disk cache, they did mention that the cache has no effect on the capacity visible to users. This technology is also being rolled out across all Ultrastar C10K models.

The hard drive family comes with both 4K native / 512 emulation and a 512 native sectors version for legacy compatibility. HGST also claims improved power efficiency. The drives are already being qualified by OEMs and are available now. The FIPS-certified encryption-enabled drives will ship early next year.

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