SyQuest SparQ drive

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The SparQ drive is a removable-disk hard drive made by SyQuest Technology. It was introduced in 1997. The drive was available as an internal version with IDE interface, and an external version for the parallel port. The disk can store 1 GB of data, and, as removable-disk hard drive, contains a solid hard disk platter on which the data is stored.

When the SparQ drive was launched, it was primarily noted for its relatively low price. Compared to the Zip drive whose 100-MB disk could cost $22 USD, a 1-GB SparQ disk could cost $39 USD.

Quality Issues[edit]

Just a few months after the launch, people began to complain that the drives had serious quality issues, causing them to break down. The damage to its public image and warranty obligations of SyQuest were major factors behind the company's bankruptcy [1]

After the bankruptcy, SyQuest kept its rights to make and sell the drive, which it continued to sell directly to consumers via its web site. The price increased compared to when the drive was launched, so it is primarily for businesses that still rely on the drive and people who want to read old SparQ disks. As of October 2008, the web site was no longer active.

The SparQ is noteworthy for a serious failure mode which damages SparQ disks in a way that causes them to damage subsequent SparQ drives in which they are placed. Simply putting a broken disk in a SparQ drive will cause the drive to break any new disks placed in that drive. These (broken) disks could break additional drives, breaking most of the drives in an office in short order[2]

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