Seagate Announces New Cheetah 3.5” Hard Drives

Seagate Announces New Cheetah 3.5” Hard Drives

Today Seagate has announced two new models of its award winning and industry mainstay Cheetah enterprise class hard drives, the Cheetah 15K.7 and Cheetah NS.2. What’s really significant about these models is that they are 3.5” form factor drives in larger than previously available (SAS) capacities. This means that companies with server and storage arrays that already have backplanes and rack sleds for 3.5” drives can be upgraded in capacity without having to be replaced thus increasing the equipments lifecycle. This fits especially well in this economic climate where IT budgets have been slashed while storage needs continue to rise.

The new Seagate Cheetah 15K.7 and Cheetah NS.2 drives provide further cost savings due to reduced cost per GB and lower power consumption in the largest capacity mission critical drives offered (600GB). The Cheetah 15K.7 with a spindle speed of 15,000 rpm delivers the “highest performance of any 3.5 inch drive” while the Cheetah NS.2 at 10,000 rpm with its power savings features has the “lowest power requirement of any 3.5 inch Tier 1 drive”. Both drive series offer 2nd generation PowerTrim TM technology that equates to a 20% power savings in the Cheetah NS.2 over previous models.


“Seagate recognizes IT budgets are constrained, and these new 3.5-inch Cheetah drives are aimed directly at helping enable many businesses sensibly grow and scale as their information needs continue, while at the same time providing the reliability required to avoid costly interruption or downtime,” said Sherman Black, senior vice president, Seagate Core HDD Marketing and Strategy. “While many organizations are making the transition to 2.5-inch enterprise-class drives which include the Seagate Savvio® drive family, 3.5-inch Cheetah drives are the leading standard for existing enterprise systems. Seagate remains committed to serving the market with a full lineup of storage solutions for a broad range of needs and budgets.”

As rack density becomes paramount in data centers so does server form factor and data density. If you were to purchase a 1U (single rackspace unit) server today you would be given the option of 3.5” x (qty) 2 Hard Drive or 2.5” x (qty) 4 Hard Drive backplane options. With the new Cheetah 3.5” drives 600GB capacity you could get a healthy sized 600GB Raid 1 (mirroring) array out of a 1U server. Previous Tier 1 drives were limited to 450GB for 3.5” drives. In the 2.5” form factor 300GB is the largest current offering.

Most storage arrays have been offered using the 3.5” hard drive form factor and as these are very expensive due to the controller and failover options that are part of the base enclosure, the most economic route for upgrade would be to higher capacity drives. In a typical 14 drive storage enclosure if you were limited to 450GB drives in two Raid 5 (striping plus parity) arrays your space as advertised (not accounting for space used by drive for overhead) would be 2.7TB per Raid 5 array. Upgrading to the new Cheetah series 600GB capacity would yield 3.6TB per Raid 5 array or an increase of 900GB per array and 1.8TB overall. This is just an example as the use of hot spares or other Raid configurations can typically be implemented. It should be stressed that we are using advertised space and not actual formatted space.

The Cheetah 15K.7 and NS.2 are available as Self-Encrypting Drives for “designated OEMs, providing government-grade data security, and instant secure erase for drives repurposed, reused, recycled, or returned for expired lease, repair or warranty.”

“Many organizations are considering drive-level security for its simplicity in helping secure sensitive data through the hardware lifecycle from initial setup, to upgrade transitions and disposal,” said Eric Ouellet, Gartner research vice president.


    Cheetah® 15K.7 Drive Specifications

Capacity
600, 450, 300GB
Interface 6Gb/s SAS-2.0, 4Gb/s FC
Spindle Speed     
15,000 RPM
Seek Time 3.4 ms
Reliability
0.55% AFR / 1.6M hours MTBF
Cache 16MB
Form factor 3.5-inch


    Cheetah® NS.2 Drive Specifications

Capacity       
600, 450, 300GB
Interface 6Gb/s SAS-2.0 (600 and 450 GB drives), 4Gb/s FC
Spindle Speed     
10,000 RPM
Seek Time 3.8 ms
Reliability
0.55% AFR / 1.6M hours MTBF
Cache 16MB
Form factor 3.5-inch

The Cheetah NS.2 drive is available and shipping today.
The Cheetah 15K.7 drive is currently available for OEM qualifications and will start shipping next quarter to the channel.
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