Vista Premium notebooks to require hybrid storage

TG Daily has received
word straight from Microsoft
that hybrid hard drives will become a
requirement for upcoming “Windows Vista Premium Ready” notebooks. The
site quotes Microsoft Windows Client Performance Program Manager Matt
Ayres as saying notebook PCs will need hybrid storage to obtain Vista
Premium Ready certification starting from June 1, 2007. Currently,
Microsoft’s listed
for Vista Premium Ready PCs include a 1 GHz processor,
1 GB of RAM, a Shader Model 2.0-compliant graphics processor with 128 MB
of video RAM, and a 40 GB hard drive with 15 GB of free space. There’s no
mention of hybrid storage on the requirements page yet.

Hybrid hard drives promise to introduce quicker boot times, greater
performance, and increased battery life by using flash memory in
conjunction with traditional storage platters and mechanical heads.
Seagate and Samsung have already announced 2.5″ hybrid
drives with 5,400 RPM spindle speeds and up to 256 MB of flash memory. Samsung
gives a January 2007 ship date for its hybrid drives, while Seagate
quotes a more vague “first half of calendar 2007” time frame. According
to TG Daily, Microsoft is working to help introduce other hard drive
manufacturers to potential flash memory partners in order to speed up
adoption of the hybrid standard.

Comments closed
    • Which James
    • 13 years ago

    According to Ars Technica, this story is not entirely true:
    §[<<]§ It's not required.

    • maxxcool
    • 13 years ago


      • droopy1592
      • 13 years ago

      And I can’t even get good drivers from that! You’d think they’d have drivers hidden in there for everything!

    • Decelerate
    • 13 years ago

    I can just picture the display shelves:

    “Piece of crap but Vista capable (technically)!”
    “Vista Ready if you set your settings to mid at best!”
    “90% Vista Premium Ready (Hybrid drive upgradable, sold separately)!”
    “Vista Premium ready which is better than Vista Ready!”
    “Vista Premium ready and a bag of chips!”

    This is what happens when you have so many versions of the same damn operating system. Joe is going to have a field trip. No wonder we need more and more tech support.

    • FireGryphon
    • 13 years ago

    Given the memory requirements that XP has, we’re going to need at least four times the current amount of flash memory. Of course, I’m not holding my breath for Vista to come out any time soon.

    • evermore
    • 13 years ago

    Awful. So in order to be marked as Premium Ready, the system has to have the most expensive models of hard drives installed, which will barely have had any time on the market and no time to see how they really do in the real world, even though this feature has nothing to do with the general “experience” of Vista, it’s just basically a faster hard drive. Hard drives are slower in laptops in general, insisting on having hybrid drives brings MS into the realm of determining performance standards that have nothing to do with the OS’s capabilities.

      • Peldor
      • 13 years ago

      Meh. This doesn’t take effect until next June. And that’s assuming MS doesn’t change it’s collective mind in the next year.

      Beyond that, it doesn’t even make sense. You won’t buy a Vista Premium “Ready” notebook in June 2007. You’ll buy a notebook with Vista Premium already installed. There will be a big colored cardboard star next to it in the store letting you know it has Vista PREMIUM!

      • Zenith
      • 13 years ago

      Hardly worth reacting to yet, just wait until we SEE the prices.

      • Crackhead Johny
      • 13 years ago

      Meh. By the time Vista streets those drives will have had 3 years of history and be cheap and easy to aquire. They may even be the default standard for laptops.
      They may also be required to run Duke Nukem Forever on a Vista laptop.

    • indeego
    • 13 years ago

    Hooray for unproven technologyg{

    • buhusky
    • 13 years ago

    What about my recently purchased “Vista ready” PC? It doesn’t have flash storage . . . .

      • Shintai
      • 13 years ago

      Desktop != Laptop.

      Also Vista Ready vs Vista Premium

      • derFunkenstein
      • 13 years ago

      starting from June 1, 2007

      Did your comptuer come from the future?

    • derFunkenstein
    • 13 years ago

    Am I the only one who likes these hardware suggestions for Vista? It’s like MS is trying to force third-rate OEM’s from filling cheap PC’s with crappy components. I think this is their attempt to say that Windows isn’t slow/unstable/bloated, it’s just been running on crappy hardware. Whether or not that’s true is to be determined.

      • Usacomp2k3
      • 13 years ago

      That method with MCE seems to have done pretty well.

      • FireGryphon
      • 13 years ago

      On the contrary, I see it as Microsoft saying that their OS is so bloated, users will need to compensate for that with better hardware.

    • My Johnson
    • 13 years ago

    Doesn’t flash memory wear out?

      • spworley
      • 13 years ago

      Yes. So do disk sectors.
      The trick is to use controller chips and firmware that can detect the failures and remap the “bad” sectors/banks to use redundant backup ones. I don’t know if the hybrid drives do this, though.. but it’d make sense. The OS might also help by minimizing the number of rewrite cycles, the flash is meant for common read-only storage, not as a read/write scratchpad, so the flash may not have as much rewrite cycle wear as you might think.

    • ca197
    • 13 years ago

    The reasoning for this is that it reduces the need to spin up the HDD. Surely 256mb isn’t really enough. I mean on average you have got to have at least 1gb of page file and the amount that windows pages the 256mb would be filled in no time.

    Also wouldn’t this be a good idea on the desktop as well? I mean my electric bill is bad enough and by vista it may cost you 400w just to run up to desktop (Dam those graphics cards).

      • MagerValp
      • 13 years ago

      A 1 GB USB stick costs like $30, so yeah, I’d expect more than 256 MB.

        • ludi
        • 13 years ago

        But USB stick drives don’t have to employ the fastest flash memory available in order to be useful for their intended purpose. With internal disk storage, performance requirements are increased.

    • muyuubyou
    • 13 years ago

    This will be no problem in 2008+ when this is out 😀

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