Long before the popularity of Panasonic, Iomega and Seagate products, external hard drives already went through several years of improvements and have developed significantly. The earliest hard disks were officially “external” in function, since they are seated outside the frame, enclosed within preventive covers. Even so, these could seldom become qualified as hard drives to contemporary consumers, as their capacity was calculated at only 5MB.
The Original “External” Drives
The very first hard drives were designed for external intents and applications. It is because they weren’t attached within the computer structure. In the late 1950s, these devices appeared which has a data storage capacity of 5MB, and were delivered with the first commercially ready IBM solutions. On the next few years, things did not change completely; as computer use was mainly directed to business pursuits and the home PC had not yet been developed.
Virtually, 30 years after those systems initially appeared, IBM introduced the initial gigabyte hard drive. This revolutionary product was the size of a family fridge, and was a freestanding component from the computer. It sold for an enormous $40,000.
The Prevailing Years
Between the first appearance of PCs and the debut of what a current customer might identify as an external drive, there were a number of innovative developments. On the other hand, the majority of these were purely for interior drives, since the requirement for an external drive was not specifically good with early computer systems.
Apple became the earliest company to utilize an external hard drive. Their computer networks normally had drive coves that were tricky to access, and some didn’t have hard drive within them by any means. At a time where users were starting to require more stable solution for storing data, this could not do the job. Consequently, Apple launched the ProFile in the year 1983. It proved helpful by hooking up to a unique port on the back of the Apple II. This hard drive furnished 5MB of storage space, although a 10MB was made available eventually being an upgrade.
It was during this period that internal hard drives started to undertake their typical form aspects. Actually, the design of the hard drive ceased modifying ahead of the advancement and standardization of IDE or Integrated Drive Electronics technology, having a shape and size that any modern-day user could identify. The most famous style factors have integrated customer-type elements varying from the small 1-inch to 5.25-inch devices.
Moreover, any of these hard drives can be startup installed as an exterior drive, as long as power and data cables could link to the device outside the computer frame. Obviously, these were not what the majority of people would think about “removable media” indicating of contemporary external hard drives, thumb drives along with other storage products.
1998 and Beyond
It was year 1998 when a movement developed in computer engineering. This became the time when the USB interface was brought to personal computers. This revolutionary technology empowered any kind of device to plug instantly with a computer externally, employing the same style of interface. Formerly, hard disk drives utilized a 40-pin connection and a power cable. However, with the coming of USB solutions, the usual practice was transformed.
This one technology permitted various external hard drive models to multiply. It also empowered the rise of other detachable media, such as the thumb drive or popularly known as flash drive. Not surprisingly, the very first external USB drives were cumbersome items, as a result of technology prevailing in 1998. However, as the coming century turned out, technology turned out to be better.
As increasing numbers of useful power solutions and cooling options were produced, the dimensions of external drives decreased. One time awkward and cumbersome, these hard drives evolved into something sleek and compact. Nowadays, you’ll find a multitude of various sizes available on the market. The most common type (especially for consumer-types) is a little bigger than a thick paperback publication. However, these options are not supposed to be portable. Companies developed these for file backup and storage space in which the drive is fixed in one location, and may support quite a few terabytes of data.
Portable external solutions were quickly to invade the marketplace. These provided storage ability in a lot of gigabytes, although they didn’t compete with larger sized drives with regards to storage capacity. Portable drives became very popular, specifically with people who utilized the drive in the office and at home, and also with scholars who wanted their data open to them on many computers in a variety of locations.
An interesting advancement that has corresponded with the increase of home networking is the capability to save data when using network-attached external drive. These categories of drives need to be attached to the home network modem; however they don’t have to hooked up to a computer to be able to function. Acting as a portal, the router enables the transfer of data between the computer systems and other devices inside a home and the hard drive. It became a great option for homes where media channels is utilized seriously, and plenty of drives have unique built-in servers a variety of media forms, such as I-tunes, games and films.
The Future of External Hard Drives
Later on, the desktop and portable solutions are predicted to visualize progressively more a fundamental role home based computer use. As computer systems get smaller and “tablets” and laptops arrive at the forefront as favorite technology, external drives will have to be accessible for instant access to saved data as well as supply fast backup. Users arrive to demand that these technological devices have the ability to incorporate with their system, and new innovations in technology will probably produce some impressive solutions. A few examples include built-in router/hard drive items, along with main server/hard drive tools for entertainment and media applications.