Help Me Choose: Hard Drive

Precision Tower 5810, Tower 7810, Tower 7910 and Rack 7910 workstations

Choosing a workstation hard drive:

You should configure your workstation with a hard drive based on your requirements for capacity measured in gigabytes (GB), rotational speed measured in revolutions per minute (RPM), interface (SATA vs SAS) and technology (solid-state drive or hard drive).

SATA 7200 rpm hard drive:

For magnetic hard drives, the performance is influenced by the speed of the drive measured in RPM. Higher RPM means the hard drive can transfer data faster resulting in higher performance. A 7200 rpm hard disk drive (HDD) is standard performance for desktop applications. 7200 rpm are available in the highest capacities giving you more space to store your current and future data.

Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) 10,000 rpm or 15,000 rpm hard drive:

High-end hard drives require a high-end storage bus for optimal performance. SAS hard drives offer compelling elements of the SCSI and Serial ATA (SATA) worlds in a single efficient design. SAS is an excellent standard for workstation environments requiring extremely high performance and reliability. It supports the traditional SCSI command structure so it can work with SCSI software tools. In addition, SAS is a bidirectional bus, meaning data can be routed in both directions, yielding a higher number of simultaneous data transfers to and from multiple devices than SATA hard drives.

Solid-state drives (SSD):

SSDs provide the best overall level of storage performance. SSDs have no moving parts so their speed is not measured in RPM. In addition to offering higher performance, SSDs are also more durable, more reliable, and operate cooler and quieter than standard hard drives.

PCIe Solid-State Drive:

For the utmost in storage performance choose the optional PCIe SSD storage device. The PCIe SSD is a solid state storage device that has similar storage technology to a standard SSD. The difference between a standard SSD is that the PCIe SSD occupies one of the PCIe slots in the workstation. This allows the data to transfer at the high rate of the PCIe bus which can provide extremely fast read/write performance.

Note: The hard drive industry is transitioning SATA hard drives to Advanced Format technology. All Dell Precision workstations will utilize 512 emulated (512e) Advanced Format and 512b legacy technology hard drives. For more information on the technology.