Microsoft's Reportedly Trying to Kill HDD Boot Drives for Windows 11 PCs by 2023

Microsoft’s Reportedly Attempting to Kill HDD Boot Drives for Home windows 11 PCs by 2023

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A current govt transient from knowledge storage trade analyst agency Trendfocus stories that OEMs have disclosed that Microsoft is pushing them to drop HDDs as the first storage gadget in pre-built Home windows 11 PCs and use SSDs as a substitute, with the present deadlines for the switchover set for 2023.

Apparently, these actions from Microsoft come with none agency SSD requirement listed for Home windows 11 PCs, and OEMs have pushed again on the deadlines. We reached out to Microsoft for touch upon the matter, however the firm says it “has nothing to share on this matter at the moment.”

Microsoft Windows 11 Minimum System Requirements

Microsoft Home windows 11 Minimal System Necessities (Picture credit score: Microsoft )

Microsoft’s most present (opens in new tab) checklist of {hardware} necessities requires a ’64 GB or bigger storage gadget’ for Home windows 11, so an SSD is not a requirement for the standard set up. Nonetheless, Microsoft stipulates that two options, DirectStorage and the Home windows Subsystem for Android (opens in new tab), require an SSD. It’s unclear whether or not or not Microsoft plans to vary the minimal specs for Home windows 11 PCs after the 2023 switchover to SSDs for pre-built programs.

The transfer to drive OEMs to undertake SSDs as a substitute of HDDs for boot volumes makes loads of sense from a efficiency standpoint — SSDs are multitudes of orders sooner for working programs than laborious drives, thus offering a snappier, extra responsive consumer expertise. Many laptops and desktop PCs already ship with an SSD for the boot drive, and a few use a secondary laborious drive for bulk storage of huge recordsdata, like footage and movies. Nonetheless, some lower-end fashions, notably in creating/rising markets, nonetheless use a tough drive because the boot gadget.

As all the time, the problem with switching all programs to SSDs boils all the way down to value: Trendfocus Vice President John Chen tells us that changing a 1TB HDD requires stepping all the way down to a low-cost 256 GB SSD, which does not present sufficient capability for many customers. Conversely, stepping as much as a 512 GB SSD would ‘break the finances’ for lower-end machines with a strict worth restrict.

“The unique cut-in date based mostly on our discussions with OEMs was to be this 12 months, but it surely has been pushed out to someday subsequent 12 months (the second half, I consider, however not clear on the agency date),” Chen informed Tom’s {Hardware}. “OEMs try to barter some degree of push out (rising market transition in 2024, or desktop transition in 2024), however issues are nonetheless in flux.”

Nearly all of PCs in developed markets have already transitioned to SSDs for boot drives, however there are exceptions. Chen notes that it’s potential that Microsoft might make some exceptions, however the agency predicts that dual-drive desktop PCs and gaming laptops with each an SSD for the boot drive and an HDD for bulk storage would be the solely mass-market PCs with an HDD.

Fast SSD vs. HDD Value Comparability
Tom’s {Hardware} Retail Value Value-per-Gigabyte
1TB NVMe SK hynix Platinum P41 SSD $150 ~$0.14
1TB SATA Essential BX500 SSD $75 ~$0.08
1TB Seagate Barracuda $45 ~$0.05

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