Flashback Photos: See what a 5MB hard disk looked like in 1956

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It’s amazing how far the world has gone with tech and most especially with miniaturization of gadgets. The pictures below are pictures of a 5 MB hard drive being shipped out by IBM in 1956.

IBM 5MB hard disk

In September 1956, IBM launched the 305 RAMAC, dubbed as the world’s first ‘SUPER’ computer with a hard disk drive (HDD). The HDD weighed over a ton and stored 5 MB of data. You can see how many men it’s taking to load it unto a vehicle. 🙂

IBM hard-disk
See the same hard disk drive as it’s loaded on a plane.
Image source


  1. I had a uni lecturer who said that when he was doing programming back in the day, your programme printed out on card. You’d have to wait a week for the results to see if there was an error or the programming was successful.

    I guess many of us can’t appreciate how revolutionary something like the IBM 305 RAMAC was at the time, but in a smaller, less technical world, it packed a lot of processing power.

  2. the RAMAC 350 (Random Access Method of Accounting and Control) changed computing and data storage forever. but it was expensive, $50,000 in 1956, adjusting for inflation that’s over a million, in fact most customers rented it
    if you consider the fact that these machines were computers in the real sense of the word, you’ll see that 5 MB was enough
    as per punch cards, they’re still in use but not for that sort of programming

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