Skip to comments.New Hard Drives Could Spell Trouble for XP Users
Posted on 03/13/2010 10:18:10 PM PST by JoeProBono
By the end of January 2011, almost all new hard drives sold will have switched to a new format that will increase their size and efficiency, but will leave those clinging to Windows XP frustrated.
Traditionally, data on hard disks has been broken up into 512 byte chunks. Each broken-up sector requires additional space on a physical disk to mark the beginning and the end of each piece. Extra space is also needed for error correction, and there needs to be a bit of room to separate it from the next chunk. This wasn't much of a problem when the format debuted in the '80s when hard drives were measured in megabytes. Now that we have entered the terabyte era, the extra room required for each sector leads to wasted space on the surface of a disk.
A new format, which all disk manufacturers have agreed to migrate to by the end of January of next year, increases these sectors to 4 kilobytes, or eight times the size. This reduces waste and increases disk size, but an operating system must be able to recognize the new format. Vista and Windows 7 users are in the clear, as are Mac users with OS X 10.4 or higher and Linux users with a kernel released after September of 2009... XP users, on the other hand, may encounter some problems.
Windows XP must use an emulation layer that makes the 4KB sectors appear to be several 512 byte ones. This won't have much of an impact when reading from the disk, but could lead to slowdowns of as much as 10-percent when writing data. That could be a particularly big problem for those performing media intensive tasks like video editing.
We know this is some pretty techy stuff, but what it boils down to is, if you plan to build a new Windows XP computer in the future, you might want buy your hard drive now. Otherwise, it might be time to consider that upgrade to Windows 7.
Not a big deal at all.
This will cause some to get freeware. I doubt those with the new notebooks or other XP users would waste their money buying a copy of Vista or 7 IMO.
Would anyone be kind enough to give me a lil advice?
I restored my cmptr recently, ‘cuz it was performing waaaaaay to slowly. I thought that by doing so, everything would be RESTORED as if the cmptr was brand new. Boy, was I wrong.
I still have prob’s w/ slow downloading time, my cmptr is VERY slow when starting up, &, even after “restoring” things, it still takes longer to surf the net than it did when it was brand new (I have a broadband connection, NOT a dial-up). What am I to do, & is it even possible for me to get things running as fast as it did when I bought it about 5 yrs ago???
Thank you very much.
I’m building a sweet gaming rig.
COOLER MASTER HAF 932 case
GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD5 LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
2X DIAMOND 5970PE52G Radeon HD 5970 (Hemlock) 2GB 512 (256 x 2)-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support
ENERMAX REVOLUTION85+ ERV1050EWT 1050W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire
Intel Core i7-920 Bloomfield 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor
With about 5TB worth of hard drives.
Getting a couple of components per paycheck.
I’m going to play Crysis at max settings if it kills me!!!
Ummm..exactly the same problem is going to affect older versions of Mac OS and Linux. Do they conspire for profits too(not that there is anything wromg with profits)?
Well, let’s see. There are an abundance of cheap 2TB and below drives out there that will probably be around on EBay for quite a few years.
I’ll go out on a limb here but I think if XP users want to continue running XP after the new drives are introduced, I don’t think this will be a problem.
Last I looked, WinXP was the most common OS on the planet; hence the headline.
I wonder if stubborn XP users could run their beloved operating system as a virtual machine running under Linux.
The difference is that Mac users are offered inexpensive upgrades, and Linux users are offered FREE upgrades!
MS could easily offer a patch to XP users too, but they won’t because that is counter-predatory policy!
Ill go out on a limb here but I think if XP users want to continue running XP after the new drives are introduced, I dont think this will be a problem.
Soooo Kay just what did you buy 5 yrs ago?
Well, it may have been longer than that...it’s a Dell PC using Windows XP.
cmptr? Are you rationing vowels today?
WHICH Dell PC - Model?
“Go ahead and flame, but MS doesn’t compete, MS conspires for profit. IMHO “
You think you got problems, I still use my trusty 386sx25 running DOS6.22/WFW3.11 to code and burn microcontrollers (no, really, I do!). Try finding a replacement video card or RS232 card that’s ISA compatible! Fortunately I still have a few ISA bus development cards, and the discrete logic chips are still available, so if worse comes to worse I can build my own.
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