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These platters are locked away inside a steel casing as unclean air can easily ruin a hard disk. with a formatted capacity of 5 megabytes. the first 5. it is very unlikely a person will be able to put it back together as a working component. a drive with a 20 megabyte capacity was considered large. cumbersome devices. By replacing the fixed array of read/write heads of a drum with a moving read/write head. at the cost of seek time to position the head. which were frequently comparable in size to washing machines). Hard disk drives replaced earlier drum memory systems due to their relative economy. the kinds of hard drives and how they differ. cost.25-inch hard drives.  c  This project first explains what the word hard drive means. and in many cases needed high- current and/or three-phase power hookups due to the large motors they used. They are in pristine condition with a mirror like finish to them. hard disk drives were large. and power consumption). It is a permanent storage component unlike the RAM (system memory). With early personal computers. however it would be basically useless to the user as he/she would not be able to use an Operating system or have any programs to use. is the main storage space inside the PC. As of July . What is a hard drive? The Hard Disk or sometimes called a Hard Drive. hard disk drives were not commonly used with microcomputers until after 1980. 210 . it also explains how the hard drives evolved. EVOLUTION OF HARD DRIVES The commercial usage of   began in 1956 with the shipment of an IBM 305 RAMAC system including IBM Model 350 disk storage. This is why a person should never remove the casing from the hard disk. more suited to use in the protected environment of a data center or large office than in a harsh industrial environment (due to their delicacy). Because of this. when Seagate Technology introduced the ST-506. It is possible for the computer to function without a hard disk. The capacity of hard drives has grown exponentially over time. During the mid- 1990s the typical hard disk drive for a PC had a capacity of about 1 GB. the relatively expensive electronics for a read/write channel could be used to access a much larger area of magnetic surface. or small office or home (due to their size. most hard disk drives had 8-inch (actually. required an equipment rack or a large amount of floor space (especially the large removable-media drives. Before the early 1980s. For many years. Hard disks use circular hard platters to store data on.195 mm) or 14-inch platters.

or 196 MB The first disk drive to use removable media was the IBM 1311 drive. This drive had fifty 24 inch platters. was up to 205. making the average access time very slow (just less than 1 second). A single head assembly having two heads was used for access to all the platters. The drive's total capacity. Π Π IBM 350 Main article: early IBM disk storage The IBM 350 Disk File. announced in 1961. was introduced in 1956 with the IBM 305 RAMAC computer. desktop hard disk drives typically have a capacity of 500 to 1000 gigabytes. the actual product shipped with two spindles for data modules of either 35 MB or 70 MB. rotating at up to 1200 rpm. depending on the number of platters installed. The IBM 1301 Disk Storage Unit . All modern disk drives now use this technology and/or derivatives thereof. however. while the largest-capacity drives are 3 terabytes. with a total capacity of five million characters. These massive units stood 52 inches (1. .377. Also in 1961. Bryant Computer Products introduced its 4000 series disk drives. 70 inches (1. IBM introduced the IBM 3340 "Winchester" disk drive. and had up to 26 platters. each 39 inches (0.99 m) in diameter.3 m) tall. introduced the usage of a head for each data surface with the heads having self acting air bearings (flying heads).600 bytes. Project head designer/lead designer Kenneth Haughton named it after the Winchester 30-30 rifle after the developers called it the "30-30" because of it was planned to have two 30 MB spindles. invented by Reynolds Johnson. Access times were from 50 to 205 m/s.8 m) wide. the first significant commercial use of low mass and low load heads with lubricated media.2010. which used the IBM 1316 disk pack to store two million characters. In 1973.

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One interesting exception was Apple Computer's 10MB "widget" proprietary HDD introduced in 1984 and discontinued along with the Lisa a year later. any hard drive bay at all). "toaster" Compact Macs did not have easily accessible hard drive bays (or. and this started a trend toward buying "bare" drives (often by mail order) and installing them directly into a system. external SCSI disks were the only reasonable option. also. however. making external expansion easy. Every Mac made between 1986 and 1998 has a SCSI port on the back.   Internal drives became the system of choice on PCs in the 1980s. but by OEMs as part of larger peripherals (such as the Corus Disk System and the Apple Profile). The IBM PC/XT shipped with a standard internal 10MB hard disk drive. so on those models. External hard drives remained popular for much longer on the Apple Macintosh and other platforms. in the case of the Mac Plus. Most microcomputer hard disk drives in the early 1980s were not sold under their manufacturer's names.  .