Western Digital Se Line of Hard Drives Aimed at Small Businesses, Data Centers

Features include dynamic fly height technology, where each read-write head's fly height is adjusted in real time for optimum reliability.

Western Digital subsidiary WD, which specializes in hard drives and storage platforms for small to medium-size businesses (SMBs), announced the launch of its Se line of hard drives, designed for scale-out data center deployments, mid-sized network attached storage (NAS) deployment, and backup and archiving applications.

The design and higher workload capabilities for SMB-focused 6-bay-plus table-top NAS units and rack-mount multi-tenant NAS solutions, which offer up to 24 bays, are designed to provide provide NAS integrators a complement to WD Red hard drives, which are geared toward small NAS systems.

The Se line offers dual actuator technology to improve head positional accuracy over the data tracks, enhanced Rotary Acceleration Feed Forward (RAFF) technology that includes electronics to monitor the drive and correct both linear and rotational vibration in real time, and a dual processor to improve performance.

Other features include dynamic fly height technology, where each read-write head's fly height is adjusted in real time for optimum reliability, RAID-specific, time-limited error recovery (TLER), which helps prevent drive fallout caused by the extended hard drive error-recovery processes common to desktop drive, and a multi-axis shock sensor that automatically detects shock events and compensates to protect the data.

WD's Se hard drives, shipping in capacities from 2 TB to 4 TB, (model numbers are WD2000F9YZ, WD3000F9YZ, and WD4000F9YZ) are available through select distributors and resellers. The suggested price for the Se hard drives range from $159.99 to $309.99. A company release noted the drives are also covered by a five-year limited warranty.

"Today's cloud data center installations require a cost-effective way to build large-scale storage systems, while maintaining the 24x7 reliability necessary to minimize total cost of ownership," Richard Rutledge, senior vice president of WD's data center storage business unit, said in a statement. "WD's utilization of vast amounts of manufacturing and engineering data has forced us – like many other companies – to use map-reduce methodologies to effectively analyze our data. The WD Se hard drives are used in our own big data center, where we have gained real-world experience with Apache Hadoop."

One of the world's two largest hard drive makers, Western Digital revealed in March that it has co-invested $51 million in solid-state storage provider Skyera in a Series B round of financing. The company had previously funded Skyera as its initial outside investor.

Skyera claims that its skyHawk solid-state storage systems mark the first time that the latest generation 19/20nm solid-state technology can be used as a direct replacement for traditional enterprise hard disk-based systems. The systems are priced at about $3 per gigabyte.