Hard Disk Drive PNG Transparent Images

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Submitted by on Aug 23, 2020

A hard disk drive (HDD), hard drive, hard disk, or fixed disk is an electro-mechanical storage device that uses magnetic storage to store and retrieve digital data using one or more hard, rapidly rotating platters coated with magnetic material. These platters are connected to magnetic heads, usually located on a moving actuator arm that reads and writes data on the platter surfaces. Data is accessed in random access, which means that individual blocks of data can be stored and retrieved in any order. Hard disks are a type of non-volatile storage that stores data even when turned off.

Introduced by IBM in 1956, hard drives were the dominant secondary storage device for general purpose computers in the early 1960s. Hard drives maintained this position in the modern era of servers and personal computers, although large personal computing devices such as mobile phones and tablets rely on flash products. Historically, hard drives have been manufactured by more than 224 companies, although after extensive industrial consolidation, most devices are manufactured by Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital. Hard drives dominate the volume of storage produced (exabytes per year) for servers. Although production is growing slowly (by exabytes shipped), sales revenues and unit shipments, sales and unit sales are declining because solid state drives (SSDs) have faster data transfer rates and higher areal storage density, better reliability and much lower latency and access times.

Revenue from SSDs, most of which use NAND, slightly exceed those for HDDs. Flash memory products have more than doubled revenue of hard disk drives as of 2017. Although SSDs cost four to nine times the price per bit, they replace hard drives. in applications where speed, power consumption, small size, high capacity and durability are important. Cost per bit for SSDs is declining and the price premium for hard drives is narrowing.


The main characteristics of a hard drive are its capacity and performance. Capacity is specified in unit prefixes corresponding to 1000 capacity: A 1 terabyte (TB) device has a capacity of 1000 gigabytes (GB; where 1 gigabyte = 1 billion bytes). Typically, some of the hard disk capacity is not available to the user because it is used by the computer’s file system and operating system, and possibly inbuilt redundancy for error correction and recovery. In addition, there is confusion about storage capacity as capacity is reported in decimal gigabytes (powers of 10) by hard drive manufacturers, while some operating systems report capacity in binary gigabytes, resulting in less than stated. Performance is determined by the time it takes to move the heads to a track or cylinder (average access time), plus the time it takes to move the desired sector to move under the head (average latency, which is a function of the physical rotational speed in revolutions per minute), and finally the speed at which the data is transmitted (data rate).

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