Western Digital [NASDAQ:WDC] today announced the new specifications for their line of Western Digital RE enterprise drives. These drives will be available in both SATA and SAS 6Gb/s connectivity and will range in capacities from 2TB to 4TB. The 4TB drive is also Western Digital’s biggest hard drive offering to date as a Western Digital product. We say this because Western Digital which now owns Hitachi GST, has technically had 4TB drives available as a product for quite some time now. But since Hitachi GST is still a separate brand from Western Digital, we’ll consider these WD RE 4TB drives to be Western Digital’s first 4TB drives.
Since these drives are enterprise drives, they are also going to come with enterprise features and components which result in a MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) of 1.4 million hours. This points to these drives as being the type that can always be left on and not worry about failures. As such, these drives are covered by an industry standard five year warranty and top notch support. In order to reach the 4TB capacity, Western Digital packed five of their 800GB platters into this drive which should mean that this drive will likely consume a decent amount of power while running at its rated 7200RPM speed. As such, the expectations are that this drive will draw on average 10 watts of power during normal usage scenarios. Also, the SAS drives ship with 32MB of cache, while the SATA drives ship with 64MB of cache considering the expectation that SAS will be connected to some sort of logic. These drives should be capable of sequential read speeds of up to 171 MB/s.
The drives should already be available through select online retailers, system integrators and distributors. The drive prices are set at $479 (4TB), $369 (3TB), $249 (2TB) and $139 (1TB) for SAS 6Gb/s. The SATA drives will ship at $459 (4TB), $349 (3TB) and $229 (2TB) without a 1TB capacity for SATA. Western Digital already has enterprise server manufacturer Dell onboard utilizing their 4TB drives in their PowerVault MD3 Arrays.