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Maxtor Corp. said this week its Atlas 10K V and Atlas 15K II hard disk drives with Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface had been shipped to several computer makers Maxtor called as “top OEMs” as well “over 30 system manufacturers.”

"As one of the leaders in developing SAS, Maxtor is pleased to be well into the qualification process with key customers and is preparing to begin shipping Atlas SAS drives next quarter," said Brendan Collins, vice president of marketing, core products at Maxtor.

SAS is the next generation of the SCSI interface, developed to improve storage system performance, scalability, and availability and extend the capabilities of today’s parallel SCSI disk drives. One of the most significant benefits of SAS technology is that the SAS system architecture allows 10 000rpm and 15 000rpm drives to be integrated with Serial ATA (SATA) drives in the same enclosure. This capability, which Maxtor calls Serial in a Box, provides flexibility and scalability. SAS enclosures can serve as universal building blocks for constructing a data center’s storage infrastructure to meet nearline, midline, and online data requirements.

SAS supports transfer rate of up to 300Mb/s and multiple capabilities required in the enterprise world, such as hot plug capability. SAS drives also feature two data connectors to provide two data ports to the HDD.

While numerous companies pin a lot of hopes on SAS as on the descendant of SCSI, several companies, including HDD maker Wester Digital, express doubts about the technology’s ability to become popular.

The Atlas 15K II SAS drive features capacities of 36, 73 and 147GB and a 15 000rpm rotational speed. The drive offers a maximum sustained transfer rate of 98MB/s and average seek times as fast as 3.0ms. The drive is claimed to be the fastest in the world, according to the media.

The Atlas 10K V SAS drive features capacities of 73, 147 and 300GB and a 10 000rpm rotational speed. The drive offers a maximum sustained transfer rate of 89MB/sec and average seek times as fast as 4.0ms. Both the Atlas 15K II and Atlas 10K V drives include a 16MB cache and are designed to the specification of 1.4 million hours MTTF.

"Maxtor maintains its commitment to delivering a complete line of 10,000 and 15,000 RPM, 3.5-inch enterprise-class drives with Ultra320 SCSI and SAS interfaces to support customers' current and future system designs," Collins said.

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