History Of IBM Magnetic Disk Drives
IBM manufactured magnetic disk storage devices from 1956 to 2003, when it merged its hard disk drive business with Hitachi's. Both the hard disk drive (HDD) and floppy disk drive (FDD) were invented by IBM and as such IBM's employees were responsible for many of the innovations in these products and their technologies. The basic mechanical arrangement of hard disk drives has not changed since the IBM 1301. Disk drive performance and characteristics are measured by the same standards now as they were in the 1950s. Few products in history have enjoyed such spectacular declines in cost and size along with corresponding improvements in capacity and performance.
IBM manufactured 8-inch floppy disk drives from 1969 until the middle 1980s but was not a significant manufacturer of smaller sized floppy disk drives. IBM always offered its magnetic disk drives for sale but did not offer them with OEM terms and conditions until 1981. By 1996 IBM had stopped making hard disk drives unique to its systems and was offering all its HDDs on an OEM basis.
IBM has used many terms to describe its various magnetic disk drives, such as Direct Access Storage Device, Disk File and Diskette File; however, here the current industry standard terms, hard disk drive and floppy disk drive are used.
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