What's a "Conventional Hard Disk"?

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Hardware' started by OldTimer, Dec 20, 2011.

  1. OldTimer

    OldTimer Banned

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    I saw this topic and just couldn't resist posting.

    I assume that "conventional" would include both IDE and SATA hard drives, Eh?

    Any comments on that?

    Merry Christmas Everyone!
    the Doctor :cool:

    PS: Here's a little Christmas Present for you:

    If you have an IDE HD and a SATA II motherboard, you can get extra life and performance out of that old IDE drive, if you connect it to a SATA II port with an IDE to SATA adapter.
    Here's one of the adapters:
    [​IMG]

    and here's the adapter installed on an IDE hard drive.

    [​IMG]

    When this is done, the IDE drive will transfer data with the motherboard at SATA I speed. (a little over 10X normal IDE speed)
    Cheers Mates!
     
  2. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    A very clever question :) I believe we are moving past this terminology rather quickly, as it is basically coming down to semantics. Some people may coin any Serial ATA (SATA) hard disk to be conventional, including myself, with IDE now pretty safe to call a legacy-style device. However, this is clearly an error in categorization and labeling, and perhaps even a misnomer, because we are confusing computer bus interface with disk-based data storage mechanics and type of memory. In many cases, we are no longer talking about physical disks! We are describing the interface that the drive uses, and not the mechanics of the drive. For instance, a solid-state hard drive has no moving parts, but still uses, at least in most cases, Serial ATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment). Likewise, while IDE drives could be coined "legacy" devices due to the rise of their more reliable SATA replacements, we are again falling into a labeling problem and an issue with semantics and terminology. Solid state drives can be found utilizing serial ATA, USB, serial attached SCSI (SAS), parallel SCSI, PATA IDE, and so many more computer bus types, we may not be able to list them all. NAS (network attached storage) as a file-driven network medium confuses the situation even more. While not a computer bus, it behaves very similarly on a macro-level.

    How do we develop terminology for devices? The proper terminology can go way over peoples heads, and this is why we often revert back to terminology everyone sort of understands: conventional SATA, IDE, SSD. We tend to label hardware into groups and ways in which we understand them, but there are physical properties that govern the mechanics of these devices. I believe that labeling hard disk drives with moving platters that use the SATA bus type as "a conventional SATA hard drive" can be considered OK and appropriate when giving a presentation meant for a wide audience. Most people understand that, in the context of the discussion or presentation, that "conventional" introduces the idea of a hard drive with non-volatile storage, random access, and platters. "SATA, SATA2, or SATA3" signifies to the average computer user how much throughput the drive is capable of, how fast it performs, and how well it is conditioned, without the necessity of completely understanding certain key aspects such as read/write/seek, random access times, memory cache, RPM, and other variables that could be even more determinate in how well a drive functions. For instance, drives operating at less than 7200 RPM are still being sold with laptops. Likewise, hard drives are still being included on some desktops that lack a large cache or under perform in access times.

    As time goes on, and as the line between volatile and non-volatile memory blurs, we know why this semantic phrasing will not work. The term "hard drive", itself, has come to have multiple meanings and originated as a way of distinguishing the storage technology from systems that relied on external mechanisms just to boot. Thus, younger computer users, as well as less experienced ones, should be aware that there was a time when computer systems had no internal data storage functionality at all. Of course, today, even the term "internal" has become subjective! We could go on. :)
     
  3. OldTimer

    OldTimer Banned

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    Merry Christmas Mike

    With a vocabulary like yours I'm sure you could go on and on and on and on and on and on.....ad infenitem.
    But you already lost at least half of the readers and I'm about to go to sleep. :sleeping: (just kidding)

    For most of the people reading internet forums today, discounting the "Experts" there may be only two types of hard drives in existence, and may be only one. It depends on one's experience.

    What appalls me is that some Major PC manufacturers, just a few short years ago, were putting out PC's with IDE drives in them, when there were at least two perfectly good SATA II ports on the motherboard. And only 512 meg's of ram, when the mobo would take 2 gigs or more. Can you say "CHEAP" ?? Some other terms come to mind like "Rip Off Artists", "Crooks", or @#^$%!
    They put just enough in the box to get it off the shelves and out the door.
    It would be like Chevrolet putting a three cylinder, 1000cc engine in a Corvette and still charging the same price as if it had a big throbbing V8.

    I'm running Windows 8/DP on a six year old Compaq desktop, after I put in a 200Gig SATA II hard drive and 2 Gig's of ram.
    With the glut of conventional hard drives floating around, I just can't see a SSD anywhere in my future.

    Cheers Mates and Merry Christmas!

    The Doctor :sleeping:
     
  4. catilley1092

    catilley1092 Extraordinary Member

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    The quality of those devices varies. Most are cheap, they're plentiful on Amazon & eBay, usually less than $10, counting shipping. I have seen them for 25 cents, with $3.75 shipping.

    The reviews of these type of adapters were what steered me away. At least 2 purchasers reported smelling smoke, one reported a fire on the MB. Many purchasers reported that the device was much less than was expected.

    Being that the negative reviews by far outnumbered the positive ones, I stayed away. I have a 80GB IDE HDD, what I did was made a backup device out of it by purchasing a USB 2 aluminum enclosure. It's just enough room to backup my OEM desktop drive with Macrium.

    Cat
     
  5. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    Interesting, as I see the FCC logo on one of the adaptors in the picture above. Anyway. When I was a kid, SSDs were considered conventional with moves towards NAND and away from SATA III being the net big thing. Oh wait. I'm still a kid and thats still happening. It's certainly interesting to see everyones opinions.

    On a side note, how does the enclosure work? I'm waiting for a new SSD to arrive and want to convert my 640 GB SATA II hard drive into a media server attached to my router. I'm just wondering if it will be plug and play compatible like an external hard drive.
     

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