How to know HDD manufacturer?

November 15th 2020 in HDD

If you go to any electronics shop to buy a new hard drive, you can see many brands of HDD.
Take a look on this picture.


These are brands that sell hard drives, yet none of them manufacture actual HDDs that store your data.

If you purchase an external hard drive then inside that box would be HDD of one of the four (and only four) real hard drives manufacturers.
And these manufacturers are Seagate, WDC, HGST, and Toshiba.


You can still find HDDs that were produced by Samsung, Maxtor, Fujitsu manufacturers, these are all real HDD manufacturers but they don't make hard drives anymore.

To make it even more confusing the four real HDD manufacturers sometimes re-label their hard drive to disguise them as another past or current hard drive manufacturer.
For example.


Despite of what it says on the label, this hard drive is made by HGST (Hitachi) factory and not a WD one. It has HGST firmware and technology and the only WD produced thing on this hard drive is the label.

Another example.


This is not a Toshiba hard drive but HGST one.

How to know the real hard drive manufacturer?
The easiest way to tell is by serial number and model.

First you'd need to get real model and serial number of your hard drive. You could use HDDScan and "Drive ID" feature.
Once you have that information, use the following table.

HDD Manufacturer table

Model Name Serial Number Real Manufacturer
Start with "ST" letters, for example "ST1000LM035" 8 symbols in length Seagate
Start with "WD" letters, for example "WD20PURZ" Starts with "W", at least 12 symbols in length WDC
Start with "WD" letters, for example "WD80EFZX" 8 symbols in length HGST
Start with "H", or "DT" letters, for example "DT01ACA100" (See exception) At least 8 symbols in length HGST
Start with "MK", "MQ", "MD", or "MG" letters, for example "MQ04ABF100" Toshiba
EXCEPTION: Model starts with "HDWD2", or "HDWL" Toshiba

Author: Artem Rubtsov

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