The evolution of hard disk drives

From 1956 to 2010

In 1956, the RAMAC 305 stored 5 million characters. Today, hard drives store as much as 3TB of data, and solid-state technology is quickly approaching a terabyte of capacity in a single drive. On the far right, a USB flash drive as small as a quarter holds 16GB of data, while a 1.8-in mini-drive holds as much as 160GB.

Hard drive technology has outpaced Moore's Law.

Return to Computer History Museum to highlight storage, from RAMAC to microdrives

Photo courtesy of IBM, Hitachi and SuperTalent.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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