17 March 2010

Update to hard disk technology could leave XP behind

Since the days of the first IBM PC, hard disks have always split the data that they store in to small chunks of 512 bytes, called a sector. All versions of Windows have been developed to deal with hard disks that use the 512 byte sector, since it was the industry standard. However, many hard disk manufacturers are now switching to disks with 4 kilobyte sectors – eight times the size of the previous sector size, as 4KB sectors allow today’s very large hard disks to be used more efficiently.

Windows 7 and Vista both take this shift in the size of hard disks in to account, and can use 4KB sector disks without any problems. Unfortunately XP was developed before 4KB disk sectors became the norm, and by default is incompatible with such disks. If you’re an XP user and are thinking of upgrading your hard disk, first check that your new disk doesn’t use 4KB sectors. Alternatively, you can choose a Western Digital disk, since they supply a tool to allow you to use 4KB sector disks with XP. You can get the tool here:


Article from Windows Advisor

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