Upset Seagate customers get cash back, free software

As part of a settlement in the Cho vs. Seagate Technology case, a fairly large number of Seagate hard drive users are eligible for cash back and free software. DailyTech reports that the settlement applies to users who purchased Seagate hard drives between March 22, 2001 and September 26, 2007. Those users can either opt for a cash sum, which adds up to 5% of the cost of the hard drive they purchased, or a free copy of the Seagate Software suite, which normally costs $40. A little paperwork is required, however: a mail-in form for the cash settlement is available on this page on the settlement website, and those looking to get free software instead will need to fill out this form instead.

At the heart of the Cho vs. Seagate case is the controversy between the way hard drive makers quantify megabytes and gigabytes and the way modern operating systems do. In hard drive maker terms, a gigabyte is 109 (1 billion) bytes, but Windows, Mac OS, and most other operating systems define a gigabyte as 230 (1,073,741,824) bytes. That results in discrepancies between rated hard drive capacities and available formatted space, which led to Cho's lawsuit accusing Seagate of false advertising.

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