Anirudh RegidiOct 26, 2020 13:25:23 IST
I don’t know when producers determined that SMR drives had been a good suggestion for the typical shopper, however they did, and it’s very irritating. SMR or Shingled Magnetic Recording is an environment friendly information storage method that ends in the next information density, resulting in fewer platters (magnetic disks that retailer information) and thus, decrease prices. However all this comes at a big discount in efficiency. The just lately launched WD MyPassport HDD ably demonstrates these points.
This 2.5-inch, 2 TB USB onerous drive from Western Digital is noticeably slimmer and lighter than most different 2 TB drives I’ve used, and even some older 1 TB drives. This may look like a great factor, however I don’t assume a couple of spare millimetres is especially useful, and I’d moderately have constant efficiency than middling speeds.
Talking of, WD could be very cautious to not point out pace or SMR on the packaging or retailer itemizing of the drive. And with good cause.
Whereas it is a 5,400 rpm drive with a USB 3 interface, I by no means noticed common speeds hitting over 60 MBps. Older, thicker drives that don’t use SMR can simply hit 90-120 MBps.
Earlier, drives saved information the way in which you imagined they saved information. A magnetic learn/write head would glide over a platter and write information in parallel tracks. SMR makes this course of extra environment friendly by making the most of the truth that information could be learn from narrower tracks than it was written on.
With out getting too technical, what occurs in SMR drives is that information is split into blocks. Given how SMR works, even when a small chunk of knowledge in a block needs to be rewritten, all the information block should be moved, edited, after which restored. This can be a lot of extra work for the drive to carry out.
As you possibly can think about, transferring tiny information round an SMR drives could be a nightmare, leading to excessive efficiency drops and variations in efficiency. The efficiency penalties are so excessive that customers will discover. In fact, WD got into a lot of trouble when it tried to sneak SMR drives into the market, hassle that resulted within the firm being pressured to come back clear and apologise, whereas additionally promising extra transparency within the sort of tech its drives use.
If I’m transferring a big chunk of information, speeds on the WD MyPassport HDD will hit 90-100 MBps earlier than dropping to twenty MBps each 30 GB or so. HDTune registered a learn pace of 243 MBps. CrystalDiskMark registered a pace of 76.54 MBps. PCMark10’s outcomes point out a bandwidth of 33 MBps. Write speeds may typically drop as little as 10 MBps when transferring small information. The outcomes are all over, and so they simply make no sense.
Both method, these speeds are atrocious, however the know-how can be a part of the rationale why you may get 2 TB of storage for simply Rs 5,000, and in a bundle that you may slip right into a shirt pocket.
The one saving grace right here is that WD isn’t alone on this. Each different HDD maker has performed the identical, and nearly any Rs 5,000 exterior HDD you purchase will carry out simply as poorly.