Seagate plans to introduce Multi-Actuator technology to speed up future hard drives

This technology could double the performance of future HDDs

Seagate plans to introduce Multi-Actuator technology to speed up future hard drives

Seagate plans to introduce Multi-Actuator technology to speed up future hard drives

Hard drives will be in a difficult position, especially as storage densities continue to increase. Today's market requires not just high capacities but also increased transfer speeds, making SSDs look increasingly attractive in the enterprise market. 

Increasing the capacity of hard drives only fixes one problem that faces the technology, as increasingly large storage capacities without increases in data transfer speeds will just make it more difficult to access data quickly. To speed up next-generation HDDs Seagate plans to introduce Multi-Actuator technology to their future hard drives, starting with the enterprise market. 

In today's hard drives, the actuator is the component that moves the drive's read/write head over the drive's media surface (the physical hard disks inside the drive). Today's HDDs have a single actuator, which means that all of the read/write heads on a drive act in unison. Multi-Actuator technology will allow half of the drive's heads to act independently, potentially doubling the potential IOPS (Input/Output operations per second) of a single drive.  

While the idea of Multi-Actuator technology isn't new, the technology has become a lot more viable as single-drive capacities have increased. Seagate has also stated that their Multi-Actuator tech currently adheres to today's standards, making their next generation drives "plug-and-play" with today's infrastructure. These drives are expected to use today's industry-standard 3.5-inch form factor. 


What this technology offers is increased parallelism within a single HDD, allowing a single drive to handle several operations at once and deliver enhanced performance. In theory, this technology could enable HDDs to operate up to two times faster than standard single-actuator solutions.

When combined with technologies like HAMR (Heat Assisted Magnetic Recording), Seagate will be able to deliver both performance and capacity improvements with next-generation HDDs, offering precisely what today's data-driven market demands from future HDDs. 

You can join the discussion on Seagate's Multi-Actuator technology on the OC3D Forums

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Most Recent Comments

19-12-2017, 10:45:29

That's actually a pretty cool gif...Quote

21-12-2017, 07:58:38

I wonder about the pricing of these drivesQuote

21-12-2017, 09:28:48

Originally Posted by CreatiXx View Post
I wonder about the pricing of these drives
This tech will come to the enterprise markets first and trickle down. Don't expect it on your average hard disk anytime soon.Quote

21-12-2017, 12:20:31

Sounds like they are introducing more points of failure in the new drives.Quote

31-12-2017, 03:40:19

Anything on the same half won't be read or written any faster.
So any claim of doubling is only under ideal circumstances and in real use is going to be only under carefully crafted arrangement of the data.
Potential improvements, but I see it being way less than advertised in reality.Quote

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