Seagate had two major announcements at CES 2020 - one featuring updates to their lineup of external storage devices, and the other related to a modular storage system with the Lyve branding on it. The novelty of the modularity and data storage capacity aside, we found the hard drives being used in the sytem to be more interesting. Seagate's demonstrations included HAMR and dual-actuator drives.

The Lyve Drive Mobile Storage System is a set of products aimed and enterprises and businesses that need to collect a large amount of data in the field and move them to centralized storage in-house at a later point in time. This is common in the media and entertainment industry (where the video recording may take place outside the studio), or, enterprises that collect sensor and image data from cars driven to train machine learning models.

The system includes high-performance CFExpress cards, a Thunderbolt 3 connector for the same, card readers, cartridges with a U.2 interface, 6-bay mobile arrays and 4-bay modular arrays (capable of handling 3.5" hard drives), a shuttle device that can act as a DAS or a network-attached drive, cartridge and array mounts and shippers, and a 4U rackmount receiver.

The Lyve Drive Mobile demonstration at CES 2020 had a 108TB Mobile Array comprising of six 18TB Exos HAMR hard drives and a 56TB Modular Array with four 14TB Exos 2x14 hard drives. The Exos 2x14 drives use the MACH.2 multi-actuator technology. The latter provides twice the IOPS and up to 480 MBps sequential write throughput compared to single-actuator drives. To our knowledge, this is the first time that Seagate has had a public demonstration of their dual-actuator drives, even though they had indicated multiple months of live production traffic on the Mach2 drives early last year.

The demonstrations indicate that HAMR and dual-actuator Seagate drives may get a public release with widespread market availability very soon. On the Lyve Drive front, Seagate didn't provide any pricing information or retail readiness status for any of the components.

Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • evernessince - Thursday, January 9, 2020 - link

    Drivers are rated for 300G when off. That is not fragile in any sense of the word.

    I repeat, provide a source for your OPINION.
  • leexgx - Friday, January 10, 2020 - link

    He not wrong really, the issue is how they fail typically

    on a wd they do try there best to fail in a way that doesn't continue to the destroy the disk platter and in most cases are recoverable

    wd also better handle drops then seagate and the actuator arm will typically not allow the head to re-emergence onto platters on a drop (unless its an extreme large drop) , where as seagate a drop on the side of any force maybe enough to cause the heads to movo onto the patter and ripping the heads off the moment it spins up as they are in direct contact (basically if you drop a seagate hdd you should assume the heads are no longer parked and never power It up until you taken it to a data recovery to open it up to make sure heads are not on the platter)

    seagate on the other hand on top of them been sensitive to drops you have a very high chance that the data is lost because it has destroyed the start of the disk platter
  • khanikun - Thursday, January 9, 2020 - link

    I could see the military. Ships go out to sea, generate data, need to offload the data quickly when back to shore. Spy planes do the same, although they already have their own antiquated systems, which is essentially doing the same thing. Pulling drives off the plane to transfer data.

    Do I see this as being dead fast? Maybe, maybe not. I can see the purpose of it. Hell, when I was in Stuttgart, Germany, I was watching Mercedes testing their cars. Not sure what they were testing, maybe traction control, gps, abs, or whatever. I don't know, but they were in a Merc wagon with a small server rack in the back with about 4 servers. I'm sure they'd love a solution to easily get that data off and onto their regular network.
  • A5 - Thursday, January 9, 2020 - link

    I used to make data recorders for military use. Their requirements are so specialized that it’s still worth their time to have someone make a custom solution.
  • eastcoast_pete - Thursday, January 9, 2020 - link

    @Ganesh: Thanks! Is the shipping case IP rated, and, if yes, what is that rating? Thanks!
  • ganeshts - Thursday, January 9, 2020 - link

    I will check with Seagate, but am expecting a response only after the CES hangover is gone :)

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now