Western Digital
Western Digital Corporation (often abbreviated to WD) is one of the largest computer hard disk drive manufacturers in the world. It has a long history in the electronics industry as an integrated circuit
Integrated circuit
An integrated circuit or monolithic integrated circuit is an electronic circuit manufactured by the patterned diffusion of trace elements into the surface of a thin substrate of semiconductor material...

 maker and a storage products company. Western Digital was founded on April 23, 1970 by Alvin B. Phillips, a Motorola employee, as General Digital, initially (and briefly) a manufacturer of MOS
The metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistor is a transistor used for amplifying or switching electronic signals. The basic principle of this kind of transistor was first patented by Julius Edgar Lilienfeld in 1925...

 test equipment. It rapidly became a speciality semiconductor
A semiconductor is a material with electrical conductivity due to electron flow intermediate in magnitude between that of a conductor and an insulator. This means a conductivity roughly in the range of 103 to 10−8 siemens per centimeter...

 maker, with start-up capital provided by several individual investors and industrial giant Emerson Electric Company
Emerson Electric Company
Emerson Electric Company is a major multinational corporation headquartered in Ferguson, Missouri, United States. This Fortune 500 company manufactures products and provides engineering services for a wide range of industrial, commercial, and consumer markets.Emerson is one of the largest...

. Around July 1971 it adopted its current name and soon introduced its first product, the WD1402A UART
Universal asynchronous receiver/transmitter
A universal asynchronous receiver/transmitter, abbreviated UART , is a type of "asynchronous receiver/transmitter", a piece of computer hardware that translates data between parallel and serial forms. UARTs are commonly used in conjunction with communication standards such as EIA RS-232, RS-422 or...



Through the early years of the 1970s, WDC made their money by selling calculator
An electronic calculator is a small, portable, usually inexpensive electronic device used to perform the basic operations of arithmetic. Modern calculators are more portable than most computers, though most PDAs are comparable in size to handheld calculators.The first solid-state electronic...

 chips; by 1975, they were the largest independent calculator chip maker in the world. The oil crisis
1973 oil crisis
The 1973 oil crisis started in October 1973, when the members of Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries or the OAPEC proclaimed an oil embargo. This was "in response to the U.S. decision to re-supply the Israeli military" during the Yom Kippur war. It lasted until March 1974. With the...

 of the mid-1970s and the bankruptcy of its biggest calculator customer, Bowmar Instrument, changed its fortunes, however. In 1976, Western Digital declared Chapter 11
Chapter 11, Title 11, United States Code
Chapter 11 is a chapter of the United States Bankruptcy Code, which permits reorganization under the bankruptcy laws of the United States. Chapter 11 bankruptcy is available to every business, whether organized as a corporation or sole proprietorship, and to individuals, although it is most...

 bankruptcy. After this, Emerson withdrew their support of the company, and WDC was on its own.

WDC introduced several landmark products during this time, including the MCP-1600
The MCP-1600 was a multi-chip microprocessor made by Western Digital in the late 1970s through the early 1980s. Used in the Pascal MicroEngine, the original AlphaMicro system, and the DEC LSI-11 microcomputer, a cost-reduced and compact implementation of the DEC PDP-11.There were three types of...

multi-chip, microcode
Microcode is a layer of hardware-level instructions and/or data structures involved in the implementation of higher level machine code instructions in many computers and other processors; it resides in special high-speed memory and translates machine instructions into sequences of detailed...

Central processing unit
The central processing unit is the portion of a computer system that carries out the instructions of a computer program, to perform the basic arithmetical, logical, and input/output operations of the system. The CPU plays a role somewhat analogous to the brain in the computer. The term has been in...

. The MCP-1600 was used to implement DEC
Digital Equipment Corporation
Digital Equipment Corporation was a major American company in the computer industry and a leading vendor of computer systems, software and peripherals from the 1960s to the 1990s...

's LSI-11
The PDP-11 was a series of 16-bit minicomputers sold by Digital Equipment Corporation from 1970 into the 1990s, one of a succession of products in the PDP series. The PDP-11 replaced the PDP-8 in many real-time applications, although both product lines lived in parallel for more than 10 years...

 system and their own Pascal MicroEngine
Pascal MicroEngine
The Pascal MicroEngine was a series of microcomputer products manufactured by Western Digital from 1979 through the mid 1980s, designed specifically to efficiently run the UCSD p-System...

 microcomputer which ran the UCSD p-System
UCSD Pascal
UCSD Pascal was a Pascal programming language system that ran on the UCSD p-System, a portable, highly machine-independent operating system. UCSD Pascal was first released in 1978...

 Version III and UCSD Pascal
UCSD Pascal
UCSD Pascal was a Pascal programming language system that ran on the UCSD p-System, a portable, highly machine-independent operating system. UCSD Pascal was first released in 1978...

. The processor was also used in several single-chip floppy disk
Floppy disk
A floppy disk is a disk storage medium composed of a disk of thin and flexible magnetic storage medium, sealed in a rectangular plastic carrier lined with fabric that removes dust particles...

 drive controller chips, notably the FD1771.


The WD1771 and its kin were WDC's first entry into the data storage industry; by the early 1980s, they were making hard disk drive controllers, and in 1983, they won the contract to provide IBM
International Business Machines Corporation or IBM is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, United States. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware and software, and it offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas...

 with controllers for the PC/AT
IBM Personal Computer/AT
The IBM Personal Computer AT, more commonly known as the IBM AT and also sometimes called the PC AT or PC/AT, was IBM's second-generation PC, designed around the 6 MHz Intel 80286 microprocessor and released in 1984 as machine type 5170...

. That controller, the WD1003, became the basis of the ATA
AT Attachment
Parallel ATA , originally ATA, is an interface standard for the connection of storage devices such as hard disks, solid-state drives, floppy drives, and optical disc drives in computers. The standard is maintained by X3/INCITS committee...

 interface (which WDC developed along with Compaq
Compaq Computer Corporation is a personal computer company founded in 1982. Once the largest supplier of personal computing systems in the world, Compaq existed as an independent corporation until 2002, when it was acquired for US$25 billion by Hewlett-Packard....

 and Control Data Corporation's
Control Data Corporation
Control Data Corporation was a supercomputer firm. For most of the 1960s, it built the fastest computers in the world by far, only losing that crown in the 1970s after Seymour Cray left the company to found Cray Research, Inc....

 MPI division, now owned by Seagate Technology
Seagate Technology
Seagate Technology is one of the world's largest manufacturers of hard disk drives. Incorporated in 1978 as Shugart Technology, Seagate is currently incorporated in Dublin, Ireland and has its principal executive offices in Scotts Valley, California, United States.-1970s:On November 1, 1979...

), starting in 1986. Throughout most of the 1980s, the family of controllers based on the WD1003 provided the bulk of WDC's revenues and profits, and for a time generated enormous corporate growth.

Much of the mid-to-late 1980s saw an effort by WDC to use the profits from their ATA storage controllers to become a general-purpose OEM hardware supplier for the PC industry. As a result, WDC purchased a number of hardware companies. These included graphics cards
Video card
A video card, Graphics Card, or Graphics adapter is an expansion card which generates output images to a display. Most video cards offer various functions such as accelerated rendering of 3D scenes and 2D graphics, MPEG-2/MPEG-4 decoding, TV output, or the ability to connect multiple monitors...

 (through their Paradise subsidiary, purchased 1986), core logic chipsets (by purchasing Faraday Electronics Inc. in 1987), SCSI controller chips for disk and tape devices (by purchasing ADSI in 1986), networking (WD8003, WD8013 Ethernet
Ethernet is a family of computer networking technologies for local area networks commercially introduced in 1980. Standardized in IEEE 802.3, Ethernet has largely replaced competing wired LAN technologies....

 and WD8003S StarLAN
StarLAN was the first implementation of 1 megabit per second Ethernet over twisted pair wiring. It was standardized by the standards association of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers as 802.3e in 1986, as the 1BASE5 version of Ethernet.-Description:StarLAN was developed by AT&T...

). They did well (especially Paradise, which produced one of the best VGA
Video Graphics Array
Video Graphics Array refers specifically to the display hardware first introduced with the IBM PS/2 line of computers in 1987, but through its widespread adoption has also come to mean either an analog computer display standard, the 15-pin D-subminiature VGA connector or the 640×480 resolution...

 cards of the era), but storage-related chips and disk controllers were their biggest money makers. In 1986, they introduced the WD33C93 single-chip SCSI
Small Computer System Interface is a set of standards for physically connecting and transferring data between computers and peripheral devices. The SCSI standards define commands, protocols, and electrical and optical interfaces. SCSI is most commonly used for hard disks and tape drives, but it...

 interface, which was used in the first 16-bit bus mastering
Bus mastering
In computing, bus mastering is a feature supported by many bus architectures that enables a device connected to the bus to initiate transactions...

 SCSI host adapter, the WD7000 "FASST"; in 1987 they introduced the WD37C65, a single-chip implementation of the PC/AT's floppy disk controller circuitry, and the grandfather of modern super I/O
Super I/O
Super I/O is a class of I/O controller integrated circuits that began to be used on personal computer motherboards in the late 1980s, originally as add-in cards, later embedded on the motherboards. A super I/O chip combines interfaces for a variety of low-bandwidth devices...

 chips; in 1988 they introduced the WD42C22 "Vanilla", the first single-chip ATA hard disk controller.

1988 also brought what would be the biggest change in WDC's history. That year, WDC bought the hard drive production assets of PC hardware maker Tandon
Tandon Corporation
Tandon Corporation was a disk drive and PC manufacturer founded in the mid-1970s by "Jugi" Tandon. The company's original purpose was to provide magnetic read-write heads for the then-burgeoning floppy-drive market. Due to the labor-intensive nature of the product, production was carried out in...

; the first products of that union under WDC's own name were the "Centaur" series of ATA and XT attachment drives.


By 1991, things were starting to slow down, as the PC industry moved from ST-506
The ST-506 was the first 5.25 inch hard disk drive. Introduced in 1980 by Seagate Technology , it stored up to 5 megabytes after formatting and cost $1500. The similar 10 MB ST-412 was introduced in late 1981. Both used MFM encoding...

 and ESDI
Enhanced Small Disk Interface
Enhanced Small Disk Interface was a disk interface designed by Maxtor Corporation in the early 1980s to be a follow-on to the ST-506 interface...

 drives to ATA and SCSI, and thus were buying fewer hard disk controller boards. That year saw the rise of WDC's Caviar drives, brand new designs that used the latest in embedded servo
Embedded servo
Embedded servo or wedge servo is a type of servo configuration used on hard disks. Embedded servo systems embed the feedback signals for the read/write head positioner inside gaps in the data tracks of the disk...

 and computerized diagnostic systems.

Eventually, Caviar drives were selling so well that WD started to dispose of its other divisions. Paradise was sold to Philips
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. , more commonly known as Philips, is a multinational Dutch electronics company....

 (and has since disappeared); their networking and floppy drive controller divisions went to SMC Networks
SMC Networks
SMC Networks designs, develops and manufactures customer-premises equipment such as gateways, routers, modems and home security, automation, and monitoring products for residential and business customers....

; and their SCSI chip business went to market leader Adaptec
Adaptec is a computer hardware brand owned by PMC-Sierra that is used on some of its host adapters for connecting storage devices to computers. The production line of Adaptec is in Indonesia. Products are made to interface with SCSI, Serial ATA, and Serial attached SCSI. Some of its host adapters...

. Around 1995 the technological lead that the Caviar drives had enjoyed was eclipsed by newer offerings from other companies, especially Quantum Corp.
Quantum Corp.
Quantum Corporation is a manufacturer of tape drive, tape automation, data deduplication storage products and scalable file storage software, based in San Jose, California...

, and WDC fell into a slump.

Products and ideas of this time didn't go far; the Portfolio drive (a 3 inches (76.2 mm) form factor
Form factor (electronics)
In electronics, the form factor of an alternating current waveform is the ratio of the RMS value to the average value .In case of a sinusoidal wave, i.e...

 model, developed with JT Storage
JT Storage
JT Storage was a maker of inexpensive IDE hard drives for personal computers based in San Jose, California...

) was a flop, as was the SDX hard disk to CD-ROM
A CD-ROM is a pre-pressed compact disc that contains data accessible to, but not writable by, a computer for data storage and music playback. The 1985 “Yellow Book” standard developed by Sony and Philips adapted the format to hold any form of binary data....

 interface. WDC's drives started to slip further behind products by other makers, and quality began to suffer; system builders
Custom built PC
A custom built PC is a computer case that is built from components at hand under the individual person or organization from scratch. The main advantage of manual assembly is the ability to pick up a perfectly balanced machine for specific tasks...

 and PC enthusiasts who used to recommend WD above all else were going to the competition, particularly Maxtor
Maxtor Corporation, founded in 1982 and acquired by Seagate Technology in 2006, was an American manufacturer of computer hard disk drives, the third largest in the world immediately prior to acquisition...

, whose products had improved significantly by the late 1990s.

In an attempt to turn the tide in 1998, WD recruited the help of IBM
International Business Machines Corporation or IBM is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, United States. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware and software, and it offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas...

. This agreement gave WD the rights to use certain IBM technologies, including giant magneto-resistive (GMR) heads, and access to IBM production facilities. The result was the Expert line of drives, introduced in early 1999. The idea worked, and WD regained much respect in the press and among users, even despite a recall in 2000 (which was due to bad motor driver chips). WDC has since broken ties to IBM.


In 2001, Western Digital became the first manufacturer to offer mainstream ATA hard disk drives with 8 MB (8 MiB
The mebibyte is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information. The binary prefix mebi means 220, therefore 1 mebibyte is . The unit symbol for the mebibyte is MiB. The unit was established by the International Electrotechnical Commission in 2000 and has been accepted for use by all major...

) of cache
In computer engineering, a cache is a component that transparently stores data so that future requests for that data can be served faster. The data that is stored within a cache might be values that have been computed earlier or duplicates of original values that are stored elsewhere...

 buffer. At that time most desktop hard disk drives had 2 MB of buffer. WDC labeled these 8 MB models as "Special Edition" and distinguished them with the JB code (the 2 MB models had the BB code). The first 8 MB cache drive was the 100 GB
The gigabyte is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information storage. The prefix giga means 109 in the International System of Units , therefore 1 gigabyte is...

 WD1000JB; models with capacities from 40 GB to 250 GB and more followed. WD advertised the JB models as a good choice for cost-effective file server
File server
In computing, a file server is a computer attached to a network that has the primary purpose of providing a location for shared disk access, i.e. shared storage of computer files that can be accessed by the workstations that are attached to the computer network...


In 2003, WD acquired most of the assets of bankrupt one-time market leading magnetic hard drive read-write head developer Read-Rite Corporation. In the same year, WD offered the first 10,000 rpm
Revolutions per minute
Revolutions per minute is a measure of the frequency of a rotation. It annotates the number of full rotations completed in one minute around a fixed axis...

 Serial ATA
Serial ATA
Serial ATA is a computer bus interface for connecting host bus adapters to mass storage devices such as hard disk drives and optical drives...

 HDD: The WD360GD "Raptor
WD Raptor
The Western Digital Raptor is a series of high performance hard disk drives produced by Western Digital. The drive currently occupies a niche in the enthusiast, workstation and small-server market...

" with a capacity of 36 GB and an average access time of less than 6 milliseconds. Soon, the 74 GB WD740GD, which is also much quieter, followed and in 2005 Western Digital released the 150 GB version, the WD1500. the WD Raptor drives have 5 years of warranty, making them a more attractive choice for inexpensive storage server
File server
In computing, a file server is a computer attached to a network that has the primary purpose of providing a location for shared disk access, i.e. shared storage of computer files that can be accessed by the workstations that are attached to the computer network...

s, where a large number of drives in constant use increases the likelihood of a drive failure. In 2006, Western Digital introduced its My Book line of mass market external hard drives that feature a compact book-like design. On the 7th October 2007 Western Digital released several editions of a single 1 TB
The terabyte is a multiple of the unit byte for digital information. The prefix tera means 1012 in the International System of Units , and therefore 1 terabyte is , or 1 trillion bytes, or 1000 gigabytes. 1 terabyte in binary prefixes is 0.9095 tebibytes, or 931.32 gibibytes...

 hard drive - the largest in its My Book line.

In 2007, Western Digital acquired magnetic media maker Komag. Also in the same year, Western Digital adopted perpendicular recording
Perpendicular recording
Perpendicular recording is a technology for data recording on hard disks. It was first proven advantageous in 1976 by Shun-ichi Iwasaki, then professor of the Tohoku University in Japan, and first commercially implemented in 2005.-Advantages:Perpendicular recording can deliver more than three...

 technology in its line of notebook and desktop drives. This allowed it to produce notebook and desktop drives in the largest classes of the time. Western Digital also started to produce the energy efficient GP (Green Power) range of drives notable for their very low power consumption and heat dissipation but surprisingly good performance.

In 2007 Western Digital announced the WD GP drive touting rotational speed "between 7200 and 5400 rpm", which, if potentially misleading, is technically correct; the drive spins at 5405 rpm, and the Green Power spin speed is not variable.

On April 21, 2008, Western Digital announced the next generation of its 10,000 rpm SATA WD Raptor series of hard drives. The new drives, called WD VelociRaptor, feature 300 GB capacity and 2.5 inches (63.5 mm) platters enclosed in the IcePack, a 3.5 inches (88.9 mm) mounting frame with a built-in heat sink. Western Digital claims the new drives are 35 percent faster than the previous generation WD Raptors.

On September 12, 2008, Western Digital shipped a 500 GB 2.5 inches (63.5 mm) notebook hard drive which is part of their Scorpio Blue series of notebook hard drives.

On January 27, 2009, Western Digital shipped the first 2 TB internal hard disk drive.

On March 30, 2009, WD entered the solid-state drive
Solid-state drive
A solid-state drive , sometimes called a solid-state disk or electronic disk, is a data storage device that uses solid-state memory to store persistent data with the intention of providing access in the same manner of a traditional block i/o hard disk drive...

 market with the acquisition of Siliconsystems, Inc.

On July 27, 2009, Western Digital announced the first 1 TB mobile hard disk drive, which shipped as both a Passport series portable USB drive as well as a Scorpio Blue series notebook drive.


In October 2010, Western Digital announced the first 3 TB internal hard disk drive.

In March 2011, Western Digital has agreed to acquire the global storage unit of Hitachi, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., it is expected to be sold to Western Digital in third calendar quarter 2011. Hitachi GST developed hard disk drives, enterprise-class solid state drives, and external storage solutions and services used to store,...

, for about $4.3 billion which $3.5 billion pay in cash and the rest with 25 million shares of Western Digital.

On October 21, 2011, Western Digital's Thailand Plant suspended operation in relation to the 2011 Thailand floods
2011 Thailand floods
Major floods are occurring during the 2011 monsoon season in Thailand, most severely in the Chao Phraya but also in the Mekong River basin. Beginning in late July and continuing for over three months, the floods have caused 602 reported deaths by early November, affected over 2.3 million people,...

. This has caused a shortage of Hard Drives supplied by Western Digital, and there may be restrictions on production from Seagate
Seagate may refer to:*Seagate Technology, a manufacturer of computer hard disks*Seagate, Brooklyn, a community in Brooklyn, New York City, USA** East Coast Seagate Distribution, a comic book distributor named after the Brooklyn community...

. PC
Personal computer
A personal computer is any general-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and original sales price make it useful for individuals, and which is intended to be operated directly by an end-user with no intervening computer operator...

 manufacturers have been taking note of the issue with Apple CEO, Tim Cook
Tim Cook
Timothy D. "Tim" Cook is the chief executive officer of Apple Inc., having joined the company in March 1998. He was named the CEO of Apple after Steve Jobs announced his resignation on August 24, 2011.- Early life :...

 stating that he was expecting an "an overall industry shortage of disk drives". A Dell
Dell, Inc. is an American multinational information technology corporation based in 1 Dell Way, Round Rock, Texas, United States, that develops, sells and supports computers and related products and services. Bearing the name of its founder, Michael Dell, the company is one of the largest...

 spokesperson also stated that they were onto the issue and they were "working with our hard drive suppliers to address potential impact for the remainder of the year.”


Recently, WD sells many hard drives with a warranty of one, two, three or five years included in the retail price, but it offers the customer the option of purchasing a longer (two- or three-year) warranty on its web site. Three years is the current industry standard and while Seagate Technology
Seagate Technology
Seagate Technology is one of the world's largest manufacturers of hard disk drives. Incorporated in 1978 as Shugart Technology, Seagate is currently incorporated in Dublin, Ireland and has its principal executive offices in Scotts Valley, California, United States.-1970s:On November 1, 1979...

 (a competitor) used to offer 5 years of warranty for all its drives, it recently moved back to a three-year warranty for its bulk (bare/OEM) consumer-level drives.

High performance Raptor drives as well as the Caviar Black Series and RE Series still come with a five year warranty.

Key innovations

Western Digital is responsible for a number of innovations, including
  • c.1971 – WD1402A, the first single-chip UART
  • c.1976 – WD1771, the first single-chip floppy disk controller
  • 1981 – WD1010, the first single-chip ST-506
    The ST-506 was the first 5.25 inch hard disk drive. Introduced in 1980 by Seagate Technology , it stored up to 5 megabytes after formatting and cost $1500. The similar 10 MB ST-412 was introduced in late 1981. Both used MFM encoding...

  • 1983 – WD1003 hard disk controller, predecessor to ATA
  • 1986 – Co-developed ATA with Compaq and Control Data
  • 1986 – WD33C93, one of the first SCSI interface chips
  • 1987 – WD7000, first bus-mastering ISA SCSI controller
  • 1987 – WD37C65, first single-chip PC/AT-compatible floppy disk controller
  • 1988 – WD42C22, first single-chip ATA hard disk controller
  • 1990 – Caviar drives introduced
  • 2001 – the first mass market IDE drive with an 8 MB buffer
  • 2003 – the first SATA drive running at 10,000 rpm


  • North America: Canada - United States (Aliso Viejo, CA; Irvine, CA; Lake Forest, CA; Mountain View, CA; San Jose, CA; Fremont, CA; Longmont, CO; Belleair, FL; Pasadena, MD; Reading, MA; Bellevue, NE; Cleveland, OH; North Sioux City, SD; Austin, TX; Dallas, TX; Houston, TX)
  • Europe: Prague (Czech Republic), Orsay (France), Dornach b. München (Germany), Leatherhead (UK), Schiphol (Amsterdam, NL)
  • Asia: Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong (China), Tokyo (Japan), Taipei (Taiwan), Seoul (S. Korea); Petaling Jaya, Penang, Johor Bahru (Malaysia); Singapore; Ayuthaya, Pathumthani (Thailand), Dubai (United Arab Emirates)


Western Digital distributes the following utilities for use with its hard drives.
Data Lifeguard Tools: a software utility suite for basic setup of hard disks, developed under contract by Kroll Ontrack Inc (who also provides similar suites for other drive manufacturers). It runs on Microsoft Windows
Microsoft Windows
Microsoft Windows is a series of operating systems produced by Microsoft.Microsoft introduced an operating environment named Windows on November 20, 1985 as an add-on to MS-DOS in response to the growing interest in graphical user interfaces . Microsoft Windows came to dominate the world's personal...

 and DOS
DOS, short for "Disk Operating System", is an acronym for several closely related operating systems that dominated the IBM PC compatible market between 1981 and 1995, or until about 2000 if one includes the partially DOS-based Microsoft Windows versions 95, 98, and Millennium Edition.Related...

 operating systems. It is free to download and use. As of Sept. 30, 2009, Acronis
Acronis, Inc. is an international computer software company, dealing in the area of computer backup, disaster recovery, bare-metal restore, system deployment, and storage management in both Windows and Linux systems.-History:...

 WD Edition has replaced Data Lifeguard Tools.

As of version 11 it contains the following features:
  • displaying built-on-demand installation manuals (with jumper settings) for many Western Digital hard drives,
  • partitioning and formatting hard disks,
  • copying files between disk partitions
    Disk partitioning
    Disk partitioning is the act of dividing a hard disk drive into multiple logical storage units referred to as partitions, to treat one physical disk drive as if it were multiple disks. Partitions are also termed "slices" for operating systems based on BSD, Solaris or GNU Hurd...

  • displaying numbers, size and type of partitions,
  • displaying basic technical disk information, such as firmware revision, S.M.A.R.T Support (Enabled/Disabled), ATA # supported, R/W Multiple, PIO Mode Support, IORDY Support (Yes/No), Sectors/Block, PIO Cycle Time.

Data Lifeguard Diagnostics: is a software utility used primarily for determining the physical condition of the hard drive. It includes features such as:
  • Quick and extended test
  • Write zeros to drive
  • View and print test results
  • Enter and print return merchandise authorization
    Return Merchandise Authorization
    A Return Merchandise Authorization , sometimes Return Merchandise Agreement or ' product repaired or replaced or in order to receive a refund or credit for another product from the same retailer or corporation within the product's warranty period.The RMA process and the issuance of an RMA is a key...

     (RMA) information

Western Digital also ships WD Smartware with many of its drives for use as backup drives. This software backs up all Documents, Pictures, Movies, Emails, and more on the drive, and continually checks for changes to drive locations. This means that regular backup takes place.

Consumer products

It also has launched two competitors in the over the top set top box market to compete with the Apple TV, Roku
Roku , is an American, privately held, consumer electronics company that sells home digital media products. The Company is based in Saratoga, California.- Company profile and products :...

, and Google TV
Google TV
Google TV is a Smart TV platform from Google. It was announced on May 20, 2010, at Google’s Google I/O event and was co-developed by Google, Intel, Sony and Logitech...

. See Western Digital Media Center
Western Digital Media Center
-History:The Media Center, branded by Western Digital, is a 7,200-rpm hard drive , combined with a reader of CompactFlash Type I and II, Microdrive, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro, MultiMediaCard, Secure Digital, and SmartMedia media...

 for more info on its past and current lineup.


See also Binary prefix#Legal disputes

Lawsuits have been filed against hard disk manufacturers Seagate
Seagate Technology
Seagate Technology is one of the world's largest manufacturers of hard disk drives. Incorporated in 1978 as Shugart Technology, Seagate is currently incorporated in Dublin, Ireland and has its principal executive offices in Scotts Valley, California, United States.-1970s:On November 1, 1979...

 and Western Digital, related to the claimed capacity of their drives. The drives are labelled using the "decimal definition" of 1000 bytes to the kilobyte, resulting in a perceived capacity shortfall to those used to the "binary definition" of 1024 bytes to the kilobyte, which is how most operating systems report capacity.
While Western Digital maintained that they used "the indisputably correct industry standard for measuring and describing storage capacity", and that they "cannot be expected to reform the software industry", they agreed to settle in March 2006, with a $30 refund to affected customers in the form of backup and recovery software of the same value. A disclaimer is now included with all drives explaining the capacity figures.

See also

  • Western Digital Raptor
  • Western Digital My Book
  • WD TV
    WD TV
    The WD TV is a consumer device produced by Western Digital that plays videos, images, and music from USB drives. It can play high-definition video through an HDMI port, and standard video through composite video cables. It can play most common video and audio formats.-WD TV :In November 2008...

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.