With the ceaseless parade of the latest in flash-based storage technology in both the consumer and enterprise world, it would be easy to assume mechanical drives are nearly finished. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In mid-2016, Seagate reorganized its drive branding into 3 main segments under the new Guardian Series. Each branch contains drives targeted and optimized for specific use cases. The rebranded BarraCuda Compute family targets PCs and Gaming. The new IronWolf series features technologies specialized for RAID and NAS duties. The new SkyHawk family is built for write-intensive workloads common to Video Surveillance systems and this is the segment we’ll be checking out today.
So what exactly is a Surveillance drive? You have to first think about exactly what is going on in a digital surveillance environment. Each camera is a constant and unending stream of data that will only ever come once. If moving a normal data file to a fails for any reason, you simply ask the sender to try again until you get it. Obviously, with a camera, you only have a limited time to capture a frame of data before it is gone for good, as of yet, we haven’t been able to roll back time. The incidents that cameras need to capture are often short-lived, so missing even a single frame is entirely unacceptable. Typical data transfers are extensively error checked to ensure a transfer is completed with 100% integrity, but this takes time and can take more time than it takes for the next video frame to come along. This is where the magic of Seagate’s SkyHawk drives really come into play.
The SkyHawk ImagePerfect Firmware utilizes Multi-Tier Caching Technology and heavily tailored firmware to minimize errors and to quickly repair them. The next bit of specialization is support for the ATA-8 streaming command. Without going into a deep dive on the technicalities, this places a higher priority on completing a data transfer in an allotted time over data integrity. While this may initially sound bad, a bit of artifacting or color shift in one frame of a video is much less important than actually having a frame there to display.
ProClockers would like to thank Seagate for sending us the SkyHawk Surveillance Drive to check out!
Seagate’s take on the SkyHawk Surveillance Hard Drive:
SKYHAWK SURVEILLANCE HARD DRIVES
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Engineered as the most robust surveillance hard drive on the market, home users, small businesses and professionals can choose from drives with workload ratings up to 180TB/yr. Store up to 10,000 hours of HD video from up to 64 cameras. SkyHawk surveillance storage scales with your needs.
24×7 workloads can leverage up to 14TB with drives designed for DVR and NVR systems. SkyHawk surveillance drives are equipped with enhanced ImagePerfect™ and SkyHawk Health Management to help you sail through your toughest challenges.
- Supports up to 64 HD cameras
- Minimizes dropped frames
- Reduces downtime
Drive models of 4TB and larger also support SkyHawk Health Management on select NVR’s (Network Video Recorders)