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  #1  
04-20-2010, 07:32 PM
cyber-junkie cyber-junkie is offline
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What's the "large HD" deal with it using like 4 gb. blocks and XP liking 512 mb, I read something to this effect, not sure what the author was trying to say...I have not seen this to be a problem, but maybe I am not getting all out of the computer that's possible.
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  #2  
04-21-2010, 02:16 PM
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What you're reading about is overhyped and confusing technical Jabberwockie that most people could just as easily ignore -- but the super-nerds of the Internet never seem to want to shut up about it. They've made an issue out of a non-issue for more than a year now.

It comes back to the way disks are made and data is stored on them. If you're not a magnetic media engineer, OS programmer or software coder, this information is only minimally useful or interesting. The issue lies between 512 byte (512b) length and 4 kilobyte (4kb) length. Older OS are aligned for 512b, while newer OS are okay with 4kb.

But the hard drive companies have already consider this issue: http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2010/03...windows_xp_4k/
Excerpt:
Quote:
WD Field Technical Consultant Steve Perkins told Reg Hardware that the company's 4KB drives will operate is if they use 512B sectors, the firmware mapping one to the other transparently. This has no impact on read performance, but it admitted there might be a performance hit with write operations if the 512B and 4KB structures, and the partition layout, are out of alignment.

Perkins said WD is offering a software utility, WDAlign, that XP owners should run on new internal and external drives to partition and format them in a way that will ensure XP's 512B sector writes are aligned with the drive's 4KB sector structure.

The software can also be used to ensure a smooth transition when Windows Vista or 7 users clone their old 512B drives during an upgrade process that involves swapping in a new, 4KB drive. According to Perkins, not all Windows disk cloning tools are 4KB savvy, and misalignments - impacting write performance - could arise.

WD will put a guide right on the drive label to ensure users upgrading their hard drives are given adequate warning in case they need to run the software.

Hardware hackers unsure about software solutions can place a jumper on the drive's configuration pins instead, Perkins said, but only on drives that will contain a single partition and a clean OS install.
.. I wonder if he means "clean OS format" on that last line? No idea why you'd have to reinstall OS.

If in doubt, just buy an older drive.

There's no shortage of them in stores or online. And I think you're looking to buy now, not in 6-12 months when the new 4k drives will be all over the place, replacing older stock.

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  #3  
04-21-2010, 02:28 PM
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Most of these articles are boogeyman BS, a mix of myth and fact. For example: http://www.storagereview.com/4k_sect...ail_xps_coffin

The title of the article is little more than techie-dork fodder: "The 4K Sector - Another Nail in XP's Coffin"

Real journalists avoid stupid cliches like "another nail in the coffin". And then XP more than proved it was not "outdated", given the number of professional/power users who have refused to leave it for Windows Vista and Windows 7, citing either workflow problems, resource issues, or related unfavorable issues incurred by the (often costly) upgrades.

Quote:
The problem with 4kb sector will be for those running older operating systems created before it was invented. The 512 byte sector was a large part of computer architecture for operating systems like Windows XP, which does not recognize the 4kb sector. Hard drive manufacturers are getting around this by programming 4kb sector hard drives to emulate 512 byte sectors. Unfortunately this has a negative performance impact to the tune of about 10% since the emulation causes significant overhead. It will cause delays in reading and writing data from the hard drive.
Based on the Western Digital information, that's not a true statement. And even if it was, are people really crying about a 10% performance loss? Given the number of people using comparatively slow USB2 drives, I doubt anybody will notice. Excluding the tech dorks that seem to have nothing better to do than run benchmark tests on drives all day long -- instead of using them for work as the rest of us do.

Sorry, I just get irritated when the online psuedo-media (bloggers, forum members, review sites, etc) essentially fabricate problems where none actually exist.

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  #4  
04-21-2010, 03:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by admin View Post
Most of these articles are boogeyman BS, a mix of myth and fact. For example: http://www.storagereview.com/4k_sect...ail_xps_coffin



Sorry, I just get irritated when the online psuedo-media (bloggers, forum members, review sites, etc) essentially fabricate problems where none actually exist.
But that's mainstream America these days, if no problem exists, they create one to justify them basically doing nothing at their jobs and usurping the values from everyone for themselves!!...and it sure looks like they want EVERYONE they can to be AFRAID of everything, including the boogyman...makes their job much easier.
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  #5  
04-26-2010, 03:32 AM
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This thread has already been answered, so I don't see the harm in a little threadjacking into off-topic but still sorta related banter...

Quote:
Originally Posted by cyber-junkie View Post
But that's mainstream America these days, if no problem exists, they create one to justify them
I saw this several days ago, and it really echoed some of my sentiments on certain topics. There was an article recently published where the topic was the economy of fear. (Not sure where pub'd originally, but it was reprinted at Yahoo and a couple other places, probably not too hard to track down the original author/pub.)

In other words, how to make people buy something by scaring the crap out of them for no good reason. For example, flood insurance when you're not in a flood plain. Or on a topic more related to this site, the malarkey that "your tapes are fading" (a topic I've publically delved into at my videohelp post).

In other cases, you find businesses that try to make you NOT buy something -- again, by needlessly scaring the crap out of you.

I'm not really sure where this 4K HDD issue comes in. I think I see articles going both ways.

Problem is, people are so busy trying to scare you, that they skimp on the details. In essence, many times they're simply lying to you.

While politics have notoriously been this way for ... well, forever ... it's far worse now. I think of all that "death panels" garbage being spewed by the right-wing wingnuts on AM radio (where it started on Limbaugh's show, if you trace it), eventually being picked up by Fox (also a pseudo-news outlet), other media, and even the average parrot/lemming you find at the office, in your family, Facebook, etc.

It makes me sad to think "mainstream America" has gotten so dumb and gullible. Does nobody research anything anymore? (And no, Google doesn't count!) Are were really so sad as a society that we now take everything at face value?

Pathetic, really.

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  #6  
05-17-2010, 03:46 PM
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I have been looking and still not sure what would be the best drive for me for the money.

I have XP Pro and would like something around 500 mb I would think, do you have any you can recommend? As I look around, Tiger seems to have the best prices but the reviews don't look good...

Thanks for any help!
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  #7  
05-19-2010, 01:58 AM
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My advice is still this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by admin View Post
A 1TB drive is probably fine. If you want great deals on hard drives, there are only two places I suggest: Geeks.com for online shopping, or Microcenter (or Fry's) for in-store local shopping. Some people like Newegg, but I find them to be overrated and often overpriced. Amazon has good deals from time to time, too. (If you're shopping around, be sure to use our links, if you don't mind.)

There's nothing wrong with refurbished hard drives, FYI. I buy them all the time, no complaints here. I've had worse luck with "brand new" drives sold online or in stores. I bought about a dozen drives last year, mostly refurbs, and mostly from Geeks or Microcenter.
From your original thread about help buying a new hard drive.

I bought a refurb Seagate drive a few weeks ago for $46 shipped from woot.com -- similar deals are often found on Geeks. Good new drives from Newegg or Amazon.

I would suggest you don't need to overthink this one. Any Seagate, Western Digital or Hitachi drive should be fine. I've not even seen the new 4k drives in stores or online yet. I've not looked for them, but I've not come across them either. I was in Microcenter a few days ago, and saw many drives available for good prices -- not a 4k drive in sight (but again, wasn't looking).

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  #8  
05-19-2010, 11:30 AM
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Thanks!
I just thought that maybe one brand was making a better drive....but maybe they are all made in a factory in China.
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