When it comes to computer storage devices, there has been a lot of advancement since the commercial use of a floppy disk in 1971 and hard disk drives in 1957. Ever since then, the sizes and compactness of storage devices has been seen to reduce in size, with an increase in speed, capacity and improved performance.
Types of computer storage devices
Due to our daily usage of computers and looking at how vital the type of information we handle, storage becomes the question of the day as to how we can preserve that information for future usage (Please don’t forget to do regular hardware maintenance and backup). Now to store data with regardless to the form or size, storage devices become important. They are mainly two categories of secondary storage devices which can be used to store data and these are direct storage and network based storage. Since primary storage cannot be used for data storage as it loses information when a computer or machine powers off.
Direct storage: sometimes referred to as direct-attached storage (DAS), are storage devices that are directly linked with the machine that access data to and from. And can provide decent local backup services, although sharing maybe limited to some point. These include hard drives, floppy disk, magnetic tapes, optic discs, flash drives and solid-state drives.
Network-based storage: these are storage devices that offer off-site storage capabilities, that make it suitable for data backup and protection. It also allows more than one computer to have access to data, as it is better for sharing and collaborating. Network-based storage can further be subdivided into network-attached storage (NAS) and storage-area network (SAN). Network- attached storage mainly consists of a file storage system, with a single storage device that has limited users, speed and expansion options. Despite that it is a low cost and easy to set up, with TCP/IP Ethernet network.
Unlike the NAS, the storage area network is normally designed for large cooperatives or organizations as it supports multiple devices due to its optimization for multiple users with faster performance. Through the use of fiber-channel network which interconnects, using wide area network (WAN) and local area network (LAN) with switches and directors. It is highly expandable, quite expensive in cost too and its also complex to set up. Although, network based storage offer off site storage space similar to cloud storage services they all mainly constitute direct storage devices which may be located far from the servers.
What is the difference between SSD and HDD
Of all the storage devices, the most prominent ones that users today’s most frequently use are the Solid state drive and the hard disk drive. Although the two use different designs and technique, their main purpose is to store data for future use. The hard disk drive is one of the earliest storage devices to be designed. It uses a spinning disk inside were data is stored magnetically. With an arm that extends containing several transducers or heads that read and write data on the disk. The arm extends to access data on different sectors of the disk as it spins.
Solid state drives sometimes referred to as flash memory are considered the new generation because they don’t contain moving parts hence, the name “Solid state”. Data is normally stored in integrated circuits, making them faster and more efficient with higher performance. Since they don’t have to wait for a platter rotation to start up in order to access data from different storage addresses.
Comparison between SSD and HDD
Technically both are storage devices used to store data and have factors that may facilitate preference. And when it comes to overall performance the SSD out stand the HDD model. As they are more reliable due to them not containing moving parts. Which are not affected by vibrations or issues related to thermal that can lead the device to a corrupted state. Making them less latency to delay in accessing data or information. And hence consuming less power, as they are idle most of the time. SSD is just optimal for the best gaming experience, as video games contain enormous amount of assets such as high graphic resolution texture, audio, models and more. Requiring high speed and capacity paramount.
Unlike SSD, HDD model requires a lot of power. When starting up to spin the disks causing an increase in latency and delay. And also causing them to be easily corrupted due to the vibration and thermal issues. Due to requiring a lot of power they tend to reduce the lifetime of batteries in laptops. Despite HDD being at a disadvantage when compared to the SSD. They have a considerable amount of capacity or storage space that can range from 250GB to 15 TB. While SSD can only range from 120 GB to 4 TB.
A hybrid of SSD and HDD would be preferable, considering a balance of performance and affordability. Helping to lower the total cost and meeting workload demands. By combining the ideal mix of flash and traditional spinning drivers. Achieving faster performance across disk drive and flash memory storage. By moving the most frequently used data to your highest speed flash storage and keeping the less frequently used on the disk drive. As it can accommodate more data than compare to the capacity of the flash memory. A good network always begins with a good design that can enhance network availability, system manageability and accessibility to data.