Seagate Announces 3TB Barracuda XT Hard Drives
3/1/2011 by: Anshel Sag
Seagate has been in the hard drive business for almost as long as the hard drive has existed. As a result, they have taken their time in releasing some of their products in favor of simplicity or sheer quality. While Seagate has struggled in the past with certain problems, they have shown today that they are doing their very best to make their technology the fastest and easiest to use.
As many people may already know, physical hard drive manufacturers have been having quite a bit of fun trying to deploy 3TB drives as they surpass the limitations of a 32-bit addressing on certain sector sizes. 32-bit operating systems such as Windows XP have issues recognizing anything beyond 2.1TB of storage as a result of the fact that is the limit of 2^32 when using 512-byte sectors. Certain manufacturers, like Western Digital, have opted to work around these issues by providing add-in cards that allow for the motherboard and OS to properly recognize the drive and to allow bootability. Most motherboards available today are not capable of booting a 3TB drive because they require a GUID Partition Table or GPT. The master boot record or MBR is not capable of supporting sizes beyond 2.1TB and that explains the reason for why some manufacturers released a hardware solution. This also means that certain operating systems like XP wouldn’t be able to use these drives beyond 2.1TB as bootable drives or wouldn’t be bootable at all.
There is another route, taken in the past by many hard drive manufacturers - called dynamic drive overlay. Seagate simply states that you only need to install the drive in the normal standard way that you would any other drive. Then proceed to their website and download their free DiscWizard software in order to enable the full 3TB on your drive. After this is done you can simply extend the existing partition or create another, whichever suits your needs.
In addition to this simple solution to the 2.1TB problem, Seagate has packed this drive with 64MB of cache and equipped it with a SATA 6Gb/s connection much like their previous 2TB Barracuda XT. In addition to that, the Barracuda XT runs at an obligatory 7200RPM producing a max sustained speed of 149MB/s and a latency of 4.16ms. All of this will be backed by Seagate’s 5 year warranty, so you can be sure that Seagate is going to stand behind the quality of this drive.
Seagate, Barracuda, Barracuda XT, XT, SATA 6G, SATA 6Gbit/s, STX, GUID, GPT, MBR, DiscWizard, 2.1TB, Problem, Solution, XP, Vista, Windows 7, 64bit, 32bit
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