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back to article WD's MyBook takes a Thunderbolt to the chest

WD has announced its new Thunderbolt-bolstered MyBook, telling us that we can soon eyeball the super speeded-up gear at a demo at the Macworld/iWorld show. The company said: "Thunderbolt technology is capable of producing up to 10Gbps of throughput on each of two channels in both directions. "Users can experience very fast read …

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Anonymous Coward

Thunderbolt can do 10 Gbps

...but what are those drives capable of? ...and what HDDs are in there (green drives)?

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Gold badge

No, there is no mention of what drives they will put in them, but if they can transfer a 25-50GB file (a "standard size full-length HD movie") in less than 30 seconds, I'd guess SSDs? I mean I can't transfer a 50GB file using 7k2 disks in 30 seconds.

There was an article on cnet here that said by daisychaining them, they got 515MB/s writing and 770MB/s reading

Yes, the ones shown at CES even had a TB in and out ports, so you can still connect up to a DisplayPort monitor :)

God only knows how much they'll charge; probably even more than LaCie :(

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Anonymous Coward

Guessing

With a raid 1 Pair you could max out the data extraction from each drive and effectively pipe twice the data down the cable.. in reality who knows?

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Boffin

25-50Gb?

I don't think that it specifies "uncompressed" anywhere, a 720p mkv is usually in the order of 1GB

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Silver badge

Hmm.

I had a Mybook with Gb ethernet, and that was true. It transfered files at about 75Kb/s.

Like a fool I bought the Worldbook which was better, but still crap. I don't have one now.

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Pirate

The thought occurs...

"...will be able to transfer a standard size full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds."

*MPAA suffers collective heart failure*

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Coffee/keyboard

*MPAA suffers collective heart failure*

*MPAA suffers collective heart failure*

I live in hope.

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Holmes

10 Gbps huh?

I'm interested to see what interface this is going to use as well as which drives are physically capable of doing anything with data at that speed. The SATA 3 interface only has a theoretical maximum data throughput of 6Gbps!?! Also, the last time I looked, the fastest available drives could only manage a maximum data rate of around 157MB/s (approx. 1.2Gbps). 10Gbps? How? When? What interface? What drives?

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Coat

Servers

Cheap Fiber Channel/FCoE replacement anyone? FC only does 4Gbps....

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FC can do 8gbps

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Bronze badge

FC can do 16Gbps

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Bronze badge

Dual drive

Most likely striped, enough to saturate a channel if you don't mind losing everything when it drops a disk.

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Gold badge

This unit has two drives. Therefore if it can read them in parallel that will easily saturate a 10Gig bus?

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FCoE

"This unit has two drives. Therefore if it can read them in parallel that will easily saturate a 10Gig bus?"

Yes, because you'll use this exact device for an enterprise-level SAN or DAS....

Yes, Fiber Channel can pull 8 or 16Gbps, as Ethernet can pull 40Gbps by bonding 4 10Gbps ports. Why not bond 4 Thunderbolt ports while you're at it? 40Gbps each way. Benefit is, Thunderbolt can daisy chain too.

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Silver badge
Thumb Up

Cool stuff, BUT...

I own one of the first 'MyBooks' (the blue ring thingie which is only accessible through Window shares), a 'WorldBook' (the critter with the 'white stripe' and the 'Twonky' media server) and a 2Gb yet RAID1 setup WorldBook.

Quite frankly I think the hardware is pretty solid and nifty, yet it has one flaw... These drives seem to have this in common; when something starts to fail you're not really notified of it. The only reason I noticed that my mybook was having problems (after approx. 5 - 6 years of usage) was because some network connections started faltering. One moment a share was available, the other moment it was gone again.

I hope they also addressed this issue in the mean time. Because apart from that I've been extremely satisfied with WD's "My Book" series.

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Anonymous Coward

Trusting a spinning disk blindly for 5 years is pushing it, and AFAIK you cannot pull SMART reports over USB attached drives...now eSATA you should be good,

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Silver badge

Some USB links support SMART data (oddly enough a cheap no-name drive from a local computer shop) but yes, its a pain that generally external drives don't report the disk's health as best they could.

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Bronze badge

SMART

Still waiting for a drive to tell me its going bad, usually they pass SMART right upto the moment they start clicking.

All right, theyve all been consumer drives, in raid sets so cheap was the order of the day but the article is about WD externals so I'm on topic.

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Thumb Down

Standard sized HD movie.

Given that there is no standard sized HD movie and the fact that it depends on the codec used, the settings used, the bitrate used, the length of movie and what resolution is used (Since HD can mean anything from 720p upwards) then using that as any reference has little or no meaning. Let's see some hard numbers instead shall we?

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Trollface

Available

... just as soon as we manage to start making some more hard drives

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Thumb Down

I've had two drives fail in the last month.

So I went to my usual supplier for prices for some replacement drives ...

S#1t the bed !

110% price increase is gouging.

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C 2
Meh

110%

That's all? They've gone down then.

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Silver badge

It's almost as if 75% of the worlds hard drive factories were under water and there was a massive global shortage of spinning rust.

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Anonymous Coward

At one point our company bought a variety of external hard drives, a couple of which were this product line/brand. They were the worst of all the ones we bought; speed , reliability and lifespan.

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I sell the WD My Book drives and have sold lots over the last few years. Almost every customer with a new computer buys one for a time machine backup. I have had 3 to 5 failures one of which was a power supply. I am very happy with them.

Duelling anecdotes for the win. :)

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MyBook LIVE versions

I've just noticed the MyBook LIVE versions, which have ethernet. May be what REAH mentioned above, but I hadn't seen them before. The price doesn't put them that far above an external usb drive. I'll wait until hdd supplies increase and prices drop and look at the 3T version. I'm surprised Seagate and the others (what others now I suppose) haven't yet copied this idea.

I've had a 1T WD green working 24/7 for most of a couple of years, still going fine, if not quickly.

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I'm not sure that USB will be going anywhere soon. Most people just don't need the speed that Thunderbolt potentially offers, so the low price and universal availability of USB will be very hard to beat.

USB 3 is already well supported and backwards compatible.

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IT Angle

Raid 0 ftw

I think to get more speed they should build Raid 0 directly into the hardware. Rather than have 4 platters of, say, 500GB each, they could could have 2 platters RAID 0'd to another 2 platters internally. 1 drive: Raid 0 performance.

Imagine if they did they that with this new tech. Speedy ----->

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FAIL

No silly

That would not work if it's using the same mechanical spinner and circuitry. It still has to read the discs sequentially. What you thought each platter has it's own independent read/write head? Foolish mortal.

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> It's almost as if 75% of the worlds hard drive factories were under water and there was a massive global shortage of spinning rust.

If the factories are under water there shouldn't be any shortage of rust...

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