24. Managing Hard Disks

The Nature of Hard Disks

For many users and system administrators, intelligent hard disk management forms the core of efficient system management. Until solid-state drive (SSD) technology becomes truly affordable, we’re stuck with the problems and limitations created by a crude system of motors, spinning platters, and delicate parts, such as read/write heads floating microns above a flying surface that can be easily ruined by particles as small as those found in a puff of cigarette smoke.

Perhaps someday, hard disks will be relics of the past, useful only for industrial art or bookends flanking tech books on a shelf. (They’ll make good doorstops, too.) Until that time, we’re stuck with the peculiar vagaries of hard disks. ...

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