You can buy Seagate's largest hard disk drive right now but don't think you can use it anywhere — 25TB Exos X26z HDD is affordable but requires special equipment to work

 Seagate 25TB Exos X26Z HDD .
Credit: Seagate

We wrote about the Exos X26z, the largest hard drive Seagate makes, back in December 2023. The 25TB enterprise HDD is a host-managed shingled magnetic recording (HM-SMR) unit that doesn’t work with Windows or macOS. The Linux-compatible drive was created exclusively for Seagate’s largest enterprise customers and has always been famously hard for anyone else to get hold of.

In fact, when Storage Review did manage to get one to test, the site had to go through eBay as it wasn’t available to purchase directly from Seagate or any of its official partners.

That has changed now, as you can buy the Exos X26z online through ServerPartDeals, and it won’t cost you a fortune to do so either. The 25TB 3.5in 7.2K RPM SATA 6Gb/s drive is currently retailing for $319.99 (with discounts available for bulk orders).

Stop, HAMR time!

The drives for sale are “Manufacturer Recertified”, with a two year warranty. “New” and “Seller Refurbished” drives are listed (for $359.99 and $299.99 respectively) but they are currently sold out with no word on when the stock will be refreshed.

The Exos X26z is only really of use for the largest hyperscalers and increases the capacity per slot by 25% versus conventional hard drives. In the tests that Storage Review ran on the HDD – pitting it head-to-head with Seagate’s 20TB IonWolf Pro drive – the Exos X26z performed well, but it’s important to remember that since then Seagate has launched drives which use advanced hard-drive recording (HAMR) technology.

Seagate has said that its future drives, fueled by HAMR, will be able to break data capacity barriers. The company is ultimately eyeing 50TB, and unlike the Exos X26Z HDD, those drives won’t be quite so elusive when they eventually arrive.

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