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What's the bigest HDD you saw? - Mike Myatt

mrmikemyatt

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Hi, my name is Mike Myatt and I am wondering what is the size of the first hard drives. I personally saw one wich weighted probably 6-9 pounds. HUUUGE I thought but then someone told me there were MUCH bigger ones.
Regards,
Mike Myatt
 

nige the hippy

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There was a 1 metre diameter platter on ebay a few months back.

Years ago I had a couple of "voice coil" mechanisms for moving the heads of some drive in and out by 6 inches, just the coils were about 2 inches diameter, and ran in between the poles of about 5 pounds of rare earth magnet. I un-skipped them just for the silly magnets. there were no screws to hold the sides on, just magnetic field. I had all sorts of levers poked in, to seperate the plates so I could get the magnets out, and had to get it about 1/2 an inch apart, before i could pull the plate off. Phenomenal, they used to take your car keys out of your pocket from about 6 inches away.
 

creepingnet

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I've seen a few at the computer museum in Bozeman Montana around 1997 or so, there was one in there that was about 3 feet across if I remember right. Pretty cool place, I might take a road trip out there again someday.
 

CP/M User

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Well no ground breaking stuff from me unfortunately. The Hard Disk in my IBM XT was of reasonible size a little bit bigger than the 80Mb Hard Disk I got - which was around the same size as the 540Mb Hard Disk. The hard disk in my XT was one of the earlier ones which needed to be locked to safely transport it.

I like that first hard disk one though, if that thing came out in 1956, then when did Floppy Disks come out?

Like the Hard Disk I'm also unfamiliar with that RAMAC machine - would have thought it would of being mentioned lots of times since it was the first to demonstrate something new.
 

chuckcmagee

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The "drum memory" in the Bendix G15 was nothing more than a fixed head disk (yep, one per track). I'm not sure how much of the interior was the drum part. It was huge. We would fire it up to warm up the room first thing. Those tubes make great heaters.
 

carlsson

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I like that first hard disk one though, if that thing came out in 1956, then when did Floppy Disks come out?
Wikipedia reports that IBM 23FD (code name "Minnow"), an 8" read-only floppy disk was introduced in 1969. It was developed as a smaller, inexpensive alternative to tape drives. In 1972, Memorex released the Memorex 650, the first writable floppy disk, followed by IBM 33FD in 1973.
 

CP/M User

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carlsson wrote:

Wikipedia reports that IBM 23FD (code name "Minnow"), an 8" read-only floppy disk was introduced in 1969. It was developed as a smaller, inexpensive alternative to tape drives. In 1972, Memorex released the Memorex 650, the first writable floppy disk, followed by IBM 33FD in 1973.

Okay thanks, I just wondered cause I was wonderning what those PDP based computers used?

I always forget though that because those machines were large they didn't necessarily have a lot of memory - well guess that's something I'd like to know about those PDP machines cause Disks seem to become more important when memory started to increase. I always remember loading a game like "Roland in Time" it took something like 7 minutes cause they (AMSOFT) used the slowest BAUD rate (1000 BAUD) the game was only 32k in size (when I saw the size of it on Disc). While the manufacturer used those defaults it was possible to increase the BAUD rates to something like 3500 - never as quick as a disc, still an improvement.

The Website 80sFreak is interesting - anyone look at the Worlds First VCR? (Size of a Dining Table - well not quite perhaps).
 

carlsson

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If I understand correctly, floppy disks were at first only intended for storing configurations and distributing small software updates. I wonder if there is some record of the first commercial software to be entirely distributed on floppy disk(s). When would that have happened, in c:a 1974?
 

DoctorPepper

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When I was in the Navy, working as an instructor for the F-14 Tomcat Fleet Replacement Aviation Maintenance Personnel (FRAMP) training command in Virginia Beach, VA, we had a base-wide mini-computer. It was in the same building as our FRAMP school, and I became friends with the DP (Data Processing) Chief and several of his workers, so I used to go into their office all the time.

The mini-computer was a PDP-11/78 or 11/780,I can't quite remember which, and it had two large hard drive devices over in the corner. I believe the designation on them was RP-06 or RP-O6. They looked to be the size of a washing machine, and the top lid opened by sliding a door inward. You could remove the disk pack by putting a domed device inside, screwing it down then removing the stack. The platters looked to to be 12 to 14" in diameter, and it had several in a stack.

There were two of the drive devices, and I they would back them up by replacing the stack in one device, then backing the other up to it, then repeating the process in reverse for the other stack.

Btw, this is when I first got interested in computers. It was in 1982 - 1985. I got my first computer, a VIC-20, in mid to late 1982.
 
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Univac1218

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Back in the '70's, I worked on a Data Products DP-5045. It spun 32 33" platters with a 5 horse motor. Stood a bit over 6' tall.

DP also made a drum printer good for 3000 lines per minute. Noisy.
 

CP/M User

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wiskow wrote:

You can see that better here:

Oh okay, I was gonna say the picture was the same, though when I went back to 80sFreak site, their website had to so conviently remove what I saw in their links (hate websites which do this!)-:

Should just say it's not really a true-VCR according to one of the messages posted from your link.
 
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