Helium Drives: Big Questions

By Henry Newman

Well they’ve finally been announced. Yet while Helium-filled drives sound great, is the world ready for them? The hype is not backed up by many facts, and the facts that exist are very concerning to me – and should be to you.

Let’s take a look at the details from the HGST web page.

First the UltraStar 4 TB drive that we all know:

helium drives

Next, the new Helium drive:

tech comics, funny tech terms

Note the missing information on performance, hard error rate, seek time, etc. If you are not willing to clearly compare the drives so that people can estimate performance, reliability and the time it is going take to rebuild a RAID set, I would like to suggest the drive is not ready for the enterprise.

At 6 TB in size declustered RAID is going to be required, and without the performance data it is a paper tiger as far as I am concerned.

This article was originally published on November 11, 2013