The History Of The Hard Drive And Its Future

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1956: The First Hard Drive

In 1956, IBM announced the first hard drive, the IBM 350 Disk File, which was designed to work with the IBM 305 RAMAC mainframe computer.

The IBM 350 Disk File weighed about one ton, and stored up to 5 million characters of data on 50 spinning disks.

Jim Porter, the late storage industry analyst, told CRN years ago that he was an employee at San Francisco-based Crown Zellerbach, which was the first customer to receive the IBM 350. Porter said he would take visitors to the company into the computer room to see the hard drive in action. Such a tour was made easy because of the clear glass exterior of the drive.


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