Western Digital VelociRaptor

Western Digital have today announced the release of an enterprise class 300GB 2.5” drive destined for high end applications. The device, known as the VelociRaptor, model WD3000GLFS is a 10,000 RPM hard drive that heralds from the previous Raptor line of drives. Marketing material found here suggests that it is destined for professional workstations PCs and Macs.

To aid the performance of the drive it comes enclosed in what Western Digital have termed an IcePack, a heatsink that takes the overall size of the drive to that of a standard 3.5” drive. This device enables the drive to fit into any 3.5” drive bay whilst keeping the temperature of the device very low, a feature that is designed to further increase the llifespan of the drive.

The VelociRaptor WD3000GLFS is rated at 1,400,00 hours MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure), which is around three times that of many standard consumer hard drives. Add this to the fact that the VelociRaptor is, when averaged out, as fast as an SSD (Solid State Disk) and you have a fairly compelling argument to give it a look. Of course manufacturers specifications are based on accelerated lifetime tests and may not accurately represent real world application, for that only time will tell.

The VelociRaptor will initially be exclusive to Alienware who intend to offer them in a striped RAID 0 configuration, further boosting the data throughput speed whilst heavily diminishing the reliability of the storage overall. Consumers should be aware that critical data files should always be backed up especially when drives are configured into this kind of array.

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