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Hybrid HDDs from Seagate


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Seagate is shipping hybrid hard drives under the extension PSD (while Intel is touting its NAND Flash on a motherboard tech). If you're not aware what Robson Technology is, the answer is quite simple: flash chip on a motherboard which is used by an operating system, placing all of the important application data close to the system memory, as opposed to talking with the hard drive as the last (and desperately slow) reserve, reports The Inquirer from IDF.

They had “a nice talk” with several industry analysts and Seagate reps, and learned that Microsoft is clearly behind the fast caching technology out there. So, an interesting question is arising: what will bring better performance - extra logic on the motherboard or the integration of the same products (NAND Flash) into the hard drive itself?

It'll make for one interesting benchmarking battle. However, scythe will hit the fan once hybrid 3.5" drives for desktop start receiving the face-lift treatment in the form of embedded flash memory. You can expect those to start hitting the market in 2007.

In the meantime, a 32 GB Flash Drive from Samsung was tested by Tomshardware and you may want to look at that too if you're interested in the subject. At the recent WinHEC show, both Seagate and Samsung showed prototypes of the new type of drive, which they dubbed "ReadyDrive".

Initially, Samsung forecast that the first hybrid drives would use 128 Mbytes of flash memory, and that booting from the drives would reduce power consumption by about 9 percent overall, increasing a notebook's battery life by about an hour. Seagate's Momentus 5400 PSD drive, however, reduces the power used by the hard drive by 50 percent, according to the company, and speeds up the time a system can wake up from hibernation by 20 percent.

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