Computer hard drive history
Listed below are the important events in history relating to a computer hard drive, including release dates for many hard drive technologies.
See our computer memory history page for the history of hard drives.
Freddie Williams applied for a patent on his CRT (cathode ray tube) storing device in December. The device that became known as the Williams tube was capable of storing between 512 and 1024 bits of data.
The Selectron tube capable of storing 256 bits of information began development.
Before using disks, storage units used magnetic drums called drum machines or drum-memory computers. The first commercial drum machine was developed by the Engineering Research Associates of Minneapolis and used by the U.S. Navy ERA 110. Drum machines were used throughout the early '50s.
On September 13, 1956, the IBM 305 RAMAC was the first computer to be shipped with a hard drive. The drive contained 50 24-inch platters, was the size of two refrigerators, and weighed a ton. It could store only five megabytes of information and each megabyte cost $10,000.
Chucking Grinder Co. began working on disk drives.
Chucking Grinder Co. moved to Walled Lake Michigan and became Bryant Computer Products, a subsidiary of Ex-Cello Corp. company.
IBM introduced the IBM 1301 disk storage unit on June 2, 1961, capable of storing 28 million characters.
On October 11, 1962, IBM introduced the IBM 1311 disk storage drive, which stored 2 million characters.
Seagate introduced the ST506 hard drive, the first hard drive developed for microcomputers.
The original SCSI, SCSI-1, was developed.
SCSI-2 was approved.
The first flash-based, non-volatile SSD was developed by M-Systems.
SCSI-3 was approved.
Hitachi closed deal to purchase IBM's hard drive operation for $2.05 billion on December 31, 2002.