A little background first - 8 Months back, WD announced the demise of their Gold Class enterprise hard drives, and prompted users to migrate to the ultrastar platform that they acquired from HGST. Ultrastar is a solid platform with Proven reliability and it's available in SATA and SAS with various encryption and secure erase features. It made sense to only offer Ultrastar and discontinue Gold. Except one thing - Ultrastar was not a color like Gold.
Consumers got used to associating gold with enterprise, and ultrastar just didn't fit with those consumers. So Gold was brought back again.
So now, we have 2 product lines within the enterprise portfolio - WD Gold and WD Ultrastar. Both with 5 years warranty, both with similar MTBF and reliability. There are some differentiation though
- Gold is targeted towards prosumers who want to migrate from WD Red /Red Pro to higher grade of hard drives. Ultrastar is targeted towards enterprise customers.
- Gold will only be available in SATA 512e (SATA/512n in lower capacities). Ultrastar will be available in SATA and SAS with 4Kn and 512e and various encryptions.
- Gold part numbers won't change on new firmware upgrade. In Ultrastar major firmware or technology change will be marked by a different part number.
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