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Sata Terabyte Hard Drives

written by: Jordan Salvi•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 6/16/2011

It was only a few years ago that terabyte hard drives were something to be in awe over. Now they're much more common, and thankfully, much more affordable. This article examines terabyte hard drives, and how the SATA connection can be important to them.

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    Introduction

    Storage demands tend to increase at an almost exponential rate. With loads of music, games, pictures, and HD movies filling up our hard drives, this is one area where more is always better. A few years ago Hitachi introduced the first terabyte hard drive; that is, a hard drive capable of storing 1000 gigabytes of information. To make it seem more impressive, you could also say that a 1 terabyte hard drive holds 1,000,000,000,000 bytes. More common hard drives today hold between 250 and 750 GB (gigabytes), but it is easily possible to fill these smaller drives up relatively quickly. The need for terabyte hard drives is growing, and fortunately they're high in supply and low in price. There are even a few 2 terabyte hard drives on the market already.

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    SATA: The Interface

    You might wonder what SATA is, and why it is related to hard drives. It's simple really: SATA, which stands for Serial Advanced Technology Attachment, is the interface by which a hard drive connects to the rest of the computer. The older standards, such as PATA (Parallel ATA) are bulky and inefficient compared to SATA, which became the standard in 2003. SATA cables are cheaper and thinner than the wide PATA ribbon cables, which makes them easier to manage inside of a computer. The SATA interface also allows hot-swapping, which means the hard drive can be removed without having to uninstall it and reboot the entire computer. This makes it a much more convenient interface for external hard drives. Most consumer hard drives today use the SATA interface.

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    Why Do I Need a Terabyte Hard Drive?

    One thousand gigabytes of storage can seem like an almost overwhelming amount of space, but in the age of high definition content, it's not as much as it seems. Movies especially can fill up a hard drive in no time, games and high resolution pictures can as well. It isn't excessive for any but the most basic office computers to have a hard drive this large. You'll most likely want even more than a terabyte of storage for a home theater PC that records high definition television.

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    Conclusion

    SATA Terabyte Hard Drives are common today, and for good reason: more and more, we need them. The demand for storage is growing by the day, and these hard drives fill the need for space. For almost any PC, and especially PCs that are intended to store video, terabyte hard drives aren't an option; they are a must.