back to article Western Digital debuts 2TB power sipping drive

Western Digital has introduced a high-capacity drive to provide near-silent green storage for the video recorder and surveillance markets. Its WD AV-GP is a 2TB capacity GreenPower drive. WD says it consumes up to 40 per cent less power than the drives of its competitors. It is targeted towards digital video recorders, media …

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Potential win ...

If it's anything like the 1Tb series 'Green' drives that I've got in my NAS box then the claims of quietness and meagre power usage are bang on the money.

In fact, the drives are so quiet that when I first fired them up I honestly thought they were DOA because I couldn't hear them spinning up. Granted, they're not the fastest drives on the planet, but they do their job with a minimum fuss. As for power draw, all I can say is that the NAS box pulls less than 25W under load and it's got two of the 1Tb 'Green' drives in it - that's good enough for me. They seem to run fairly cool as well - the NAS has a temperature controlled fan inside and it only ever really comes on when the drives are getting hammered (eg. during big file transfers and backups)

The only downside I can see is that 2Tb of data is a helluva lot of storage to potentially lose, backup regimes or no, and I'd be very wary of using one as a sole drive. But then, that's me.

I don't really care if the Seagate drives pull less power and/or are quieter - after the Barracuda firmware debacle they're off the supplier list for home and work purposes.

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Wear levelling on a hard disk?

I'm puzzled by this. Surely the head never touches the data surface, and as far as I know, magnetic media don't deteriorate with repeated writes. If so, what is the purpose of pre-emptively moving the heads (or the data?) around? Presumably this does not refer to the once-every-few-seconds random idle seek that hard disks have been doing for decades to prevent contaminant build-up on tracks adjacent to a long-stationary head ... or is marketing just putting a new name on a very old feature?

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Anonymous Coward

@Simon Ward

'The only downside I can see is that 2Tb of data is a helluva lot of storage to potentially lose,'

But surely..Thats why your NAS box has two drives and supports mirrorring?!?

My 1TB Mirrored Drive NAS is 98% full now.. so its about time for the 2TB drives..

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screw that...

.... when are the performance 2TB Drives coming? All well and good having the lean and green versions, but some of us have things like virtual machine images and video data to shift around in a hurry...

Roll on Spinpoint F1 2TB...

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Anonymous Coward

PVR / DVR

Cool, but I bet the damn thing still won't work in hardly any PVR / DVR boxes. (Not WD's fault, but bloody annoying none the less).

I'm trying to upgrade the storage on my FTA Satbox recorder and I'm now on the 4th different make & model of hard drive because none of the new ones are detected by the satbox. This seems to be quite a common problem (for DTT recorder boxes as well).

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Re: @Simon Ward

"But surely..Thats why your NAS box has two drives and supports mirrorring?!?"

Yes, but a 2-disk NAS isn't the sort of thing your average Joe Random Luser is going to have, is it?

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Buy 2

All my important data used to be on mirrored hard drives. One died ... I replaced it ... no big deal.

Now I switched to syncing once every 24 hours with an external drive.

When I have to travel I take my laptop and external hard drive.

They say if your data isn't in three places its already gone. Maybe its time for me to invest in NAS?

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Does IntelliPower vary spin speed?

The story originally said IntelliPower varies spin speed. Some commentators said it doesn't. We checked and Western Digital doesn't actually say it does that although the impression has been given that spin speed variation is the secret sauce in IntelliPower.

In fact, WD is not transparent here, not even supplying a spin speed range or number at all for drives with IntelliPower. It appears that within a WD model range which has IntelliPower the spin speed might vary with the drive's capacity.

We've asked WD to clear this up. If it tells us what the IntelliPower score is then we'll pass that information on.

Chris.

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Eh?

Is it me or were there 3 speeds: Green barracuda, greenpower and the AV-GP, with the AV-GP using more power than the barracuda?

If Im right then the only benefit is the quietness? But then it has already been said that the current drives are pretty quiet anyway...

As for NAS - there are many 'home-use' 2 and 4 bay NAS boxes on the market for under £150/$2xx.. I have had the Dlink DNS 323 for a few years now... the main point is that a NAS box is for disk redundancy and not a standalone backup solution! You STILL need a backup of the NAS data (if you want to survive data curruption/unit failure/physical damage etc.)

DHD

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