A dollar a gigabyte

I’m in the process of upgrading the servers here, in anticipation of their move to the new silverorange/reinvented data centre.

The server that powers this website is far, far less powerful than you might imagine it to be: it’s a generic 233 MGHz Pentium II with a 4GB hard drive. Not greased lightning, in other words.

I’m preparing to replace it with the machine that used to be my Windows 2000 desktop, which is a 500 MGhz Pentium III bona fide IBM machine. It’s a trusty piece of iron that has served me well, and has a lot of life left in it. Although it isn’t a greased lightning server either, it’s more than up to the task of running the operation here.

But it only had a 4GB hard drive, which isn’t really enough space to store everything that I’d like to store.

So I went out to Future Shop today and bought a 160GB Western Digital hard drive. With rebate (the standard Future Shop “price is lower than you think” trick), the price was $169 before taxes. Or about a dollar a gigabyte. And it came with a free UltraATA controller card.

The irony is that this price makes it both cheaper than the generic “Cicero” brand 160GB drive, and cheaper than the 80GB Western Digital drive of the same series.

It installed in the old IBM machine easily, and RedHat Linux is chugging away at its installation right now.

I can’t actually conceive of a drive that’s 160GB — my first IBM machine had a 20MB drive, and I thought that was basically infinite.

I’m sure, however, that I’ll fill it up in short order.

The $169/160GB drive is on sale this week at Future Shop. Be prepared for the usual “would you like an extended warranty with that?” routine.


Nils Ling's picture
Nils Ling on November 16, 2003 - 19:07 Permalink

I just won’t do Future Shop any more. Try taking advantage of that “extended warranty” — they ship your stuff (in my case, my DVD player) to Guam or wherever, and promise it’ll be back in “four to six weeks” (ranked right up there with “… and I’ll respect you in the morning” and “I’m from the givernment, I’m here to help you” as things you should never believe).

Sure, their prices are good, sometimes — but take the flyer, wander over to Staples, and chances are they’ll match it.

roberto's picture
roberto on April 4, 2005 - 01:49 Permalink

I’m in exactly the same situation as described in this article; I have one good piece of 533MHz Pentium III IBM Machine with 20 GB of storage. Now I’m thinking this is a so very little amount of space and just want to buy a WD hardrive of about 80 GB but my concern is if that’s going to fit in my old machine; or if I’ll just have to plat some unknown tricks to make this drive run smoothly inside my dear trusty hardware. Someone told me: “You’ll buy a 80 GB hard drive but in your PC it will respond as it would have less space really; because of the high speed”; well, I just don’t know…