New "Advanced Format" Hard Drives

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by KeriJane, Apr 23, 2010.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 26, 2009

    I bought a new Hard Drive today.
    It's a 1.5TB Western Digital GreenPower WD15EARS with "Advanced Format" and a huge, 64mb Cache. I wasn't intending to get anything special, just more space.

    Apparently "Advanced Format" means the drive sectors are 4kb instead of the usual 512b.
    This has apparently been in the works for some time but is just now being phased in.

    OSX back to Tiger (10.4) supports Advanced Format drives with no issues.
    The big hold up has been Windows 5 (XP) and earlier. Using one of these drives with XP could cause a real slowdown unless special precautions are taken.

    The drive installed and formatted normally under Snow Leopard. According to AJA System Test, the 5400rpm GP drive is indeed slower than my WD Blacks (duh!) and a 7200rpm Hitachi. I have yet to compare it to one of my external "regular" GreenPower drives by mounting one internally.

    Here's a good description:

    Any thoughts as to how this new formatting will affect Macs in particular?

    Have Fun,
  2. macrumors 68000


    Apr 3, 2007
    1 Finite Place
    I see this topic is a bit of a month old...but I wanted to see how well the EARS drive in your set up was doing?

    A few friends got some of the 2TB EARS and they say theyre fine except when they used them in servers either raid and non raid they go offline alot or disappear in some fashion from the server.

    and in a raid set up on their macpros it keeps spewing out errors on them and seems to work better as a storage drive than an OS drive.

    IIRC WD put some firmware on these drives that makes them wonky under raid/server set ups...but not really sure.
  3. macrumors 6502

    Jun 29, 2008
    I'm curious to find out how to use them with Boot Camp.

    Say you have a Mac Pro, and 2 hard drives, one for OS X, one for Windows.

    When creating the Boot Camp partition on the Windows drive, do you then need to run WD Align so it will work properly in Windows?
  4. macrumors 65816

    Feb 14, 2007
    SF, CA
    Only if you are using XP or older. With WIndows 7 the drives are set to go, unless you are using a cloning tool.
  5. macrumors 68020


    Mar 13, 2005
    So the moral of the story is advanced format is good to go on OS X 10.4+?

    I am on my way out soon to buy a WD Scorpio Black 500GB 2.5" for my MacBook. It's on sale for only 57.99.

    They have the WD500BPKT (AF version) and the WD500BEKT (standard format). The standard format one is on sale also but is more expensive for some reason. It's 64.99.

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