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WD FIPS 140-2 Compliant External Hard Drives 2021

Updated on July 28, 2021

WD NVMe Self Encrypting Drives SEDs

Self Encrypting Drives Fips 140-2 (User Guide)

Western Digital offers the highest density, fastest dual-port Ultrastar DC SS530 SAS SSD drives. It offers maximum capacity in TBs and sets the records with 440,000 random read operations per second and up to 320,000 random write operations per second.

In most critical data warehouse and cloud applications, data centers can have a breakthrough performance by opting for self-encrypted data center drives. With the set parameters of NVME SSDs having a sustained read-write speed of 2000MB per second, way faster than the SATA SSD III limited to 600MB per second., the new SAS SSDs implement new NAND technology/ The rapidly advancing technology is likely to help to introduce Solid state drives with seeing higher speeds with NVMe.

In our previous post, we discussed about the WD Black sn750 SSD’s, which has emerged as an unparalleled SSD option at an affordable price. But Ultrastar DC SS530 SAS SSD’s demand increase due to high storage capacity and high read & write speed.

Checkout our Western Digital Showcase Page for more related information about WD products. Before learning more about the WD data center TCG-FIPS compliant drives, let’s get to know what people ask about these drives:

  • Which type of SSD is worth buying for my gaming PC?
  • NVMe vs SATA: What’s the difference and which is faster?
  • Is it worth buying FIPS compliant drives?
  • Which WD drive for a data center server?
  • Which WD drive for a server?
  • Which brand of HDD is most reliable?

Searching for FIPS 140-2 NVMe or SSD Drives

Without any break, Let’s start with answer to your questions.

What Is NVMe and Why Is It Important to Use FIPS Compliant?

When we talk about the new generation SSDs, we come across this term often. NVME (Non-Volatile Memory Express) is a new protocol for accessing high-speed storage media that brings many advantages compared to legacy protocols. But what is NVMe and why is it important for data-driven businesses? Well, we talk of drives handling huge data, its preservation, capturing, accessing and transforming, performance and endurance are the two major factors.

If you see, people are more interested to know what’s the difference between an SSD and NVMe?

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To meet the next-generation data requirements, NVMe is launched. It is a high-performance, NUMA (Non-Uniform Memory Access) optimized, and highly scalable storage protocol, that connects the host to the memory subsystem. The protocol is relatively new, feature-rich, and designed to provide high speed, better performance, greater power efficiency, and compatibility.

Note: Western Digital’s NVMe SSDs, platforms, and fully-featured flash storage systems for everything from IoT Edge applications to personal gaming. WD data center TCG-FIPS compliant drives follow NVMe protocol continuing the legacy of SATA/SAS SSDs

Checkout Western Digital NVMe SSD‘s at our E-commerce store Shop Saitech

Is NVMe SSD worth it?

Yes, this is rather the protocol set for the SSDs used for advanced-level data applications.

Which type of SSD is fastest?

NVMe SSDs are much faster as their red-write capacity is much bigger than SATA and other SSDs.

NVMe vs SATA: What’s the difference and which is faster?

These NVMe PCIe drives are connected in an M.2 PCIe slot in the motherboard or using a PCIe slot in a desktop (using an adapter for M2 or an SSD NVMe drive in card).

SSD in SATA is connected to the hard drive SATA 3 ports or an M2 SSD SATA port in the motherboard. Having an M.2 port in the motherboard is not enough, your PC should support PCIe or SATA before you purchase an M2 type SSD.

NVMe vs. M.2 vs. SATA What’s the Difference?

As discussed above NVMe drives need not be following M.2 as M.2 is just the form factor. M.2 drives also come in SATA versions. The NVMe SSDs are much faster in speed as compared with SATA. As in this post, we are talking about NVMe enabled WD data center TCG-FIPS compliant drives which come in TBs (12 Tb, 16 Tb, 18 Tb).

What is a self-encrypting drive (SED)?

A self-encrypting drive (SED) is a hard disk drive (HDD) or solid-state drive (SSD) designed to automatically encrypt and decrypt drive data without the need for user input or disk encryption software.

The Trusted Computing Group (TCG) maintains the most widely used SED encryption specifications. TCG Opal 2.0 and Enterprise are commonly used in large-scale data centers. TCG specified SED encryption does not affect system applications or OS operations.

Other than WD, several other companies are manufacturing hardware encryption supporting SEDs including Samsung, Seagate, and Toshiba.Usually, these drives are used for military purposes but Western Digital has come up with models like 0F38354 – HGS 18TB SAS 72 512MB 0F38354 3.5″512M 512E TCG-FIPS DCHC550, 0F29563 – HGS 12TB SAS 72 256M 0F29563 3.5″12Gb/s ULTRA 4KN TCG FIPS that can be used for enterprises especially large data centers.

Note: A description of the TCG-FIPS DCHC550 model is discussed later in the post.

How do I know if my drive is self-encrypting?

Important Consideration: Normally, the question people ask is,” Are self-encrypting drives secure?”

Well, SEDs are considered a secure form of data at rest protection, but here is a clutch: users need to set a unique password on their SEDs to have them lock during the power off of the system.

As far as the enabling of a self encrypted drive is concerned, you can check with the user manual about the details of HDD and SSD used in the system. Also, you can research on the internet about the SSD model or contact the manufacturer directly. They will also be able to provide the details.

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As with the self-encrypting WD data center TCG-FIPS compliant drives,( 0F38354 or 0F29563 WD TCG-FIPS DTC550), the self-encryption capability is listed in the product description.

Note: Western Digital Purple pro HDD is used for surveillance video storage and design for handle the workloads with optimized storage performance.

What Is FIPS-compliant Encryption?

FIPS stands for “Federal Information Processing Standards.” it is a standard set for using specific encryption methods. Standards are set by the National Institute of Standards and Technology or NIST.

The setting in Windows complies with the US government FIPS 140 standard. When it’s enabled, it forces Windows to only use FIPS-validated encryption schemes and advises applications to do so, as well.


It is a myth that “FIPS mode” makes the OS (Windows) more secure. It just blocks access to newer cryptography schemes that haven’t been FIPS-validated.

TCG- FIPS compliance drives only ensure secure and approved encryption methods that can be used for SEDs.FIPS mode doesn’t block or support any other application.

FAQ’s About Fips Hard Drive

What is a FIPS hard drive?

FDE/FIPS is a standard set for self-encrypting drives that can surpass the capacity of SATA in terms of reading/ write operations. The 140 series of Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) are U.S. government computer security standards that specify requirements for cryptography modules that have approved FIPS drives for secure encrypted enterprise use.

What is TCG encryption?

Trusted Computing Group,- TCG opal defines standards (formatting, bit values, and commands) for creating and managing interoperable self-encrypting drives. It is supported by multiple hard drive vendors, and the basic components are put on the drive during manufacturing.
Opal handles the encryption/decryption of information within the device without requiring a host, enabling fast encryption/ decryption and minimizing the risk of data leakage without undermining system performance.

What is TCG in SSD?

TCG is the international industry standards group that provides secure encrypted solutions for storage drives. The TCG Enterprise-enabled SSDs use hardware-level encryption to provide superior protection against data breaches, loss, and theft. Whereas Opal is a workgroup for Policy Controlled Storage Device Architecture. It is a standard for managing self-encrypting drives.

Who needs FIPS compliance?

Earlier hardware security was implemented for the military and government sector to encrypt . decrypt the data in a secure way. But as the data usage and dependability have increased FIPS 140-2 standards are required and used for public and private sectors.

Because of the robust level of protection offered under FIPS 140-2, many enterprises in the energy, transportation, manufacturing, healthcare, and financial services sectors, depend on FIPS 140-2 as their go-to cryptography module standard.

WD Data Center TCG-FIPS Compliant Drives

Western Digital Sets New Standard With Latest Generation In Popular HGST-Brand Ultrastar SAS SSD Family are becoming popular. Here is a brief description of the product.

Western Digital Ultrastar DC HC550 Enterprise Hard Drive (7200 RPM/ 3.5 Inch Internal/ SATA 6Gb/S)

The DC HC500 series is designed for public and private cloud environments where storage density and cost-efficient infrastructure are critical. The 12TB/16 TB/18 TB Ultrastar DC HC550 HDDs are using the Energy-Assisted Magnetic Recording technology and utilize the industry’s first Triple Stage Actuator. These technologies, integrated with HelioSeal on a 9-disk platform.

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Product Highlights

  • Up to 16TB capacity in a standard 3.5-inch form factor with 7200 RPM.
  • CMR technology works with high scale environments.
  • Designates as the industry’s first Energy-Assisted Magnetic Recording technology.
  • Equipped with Industry’s first Triple Stage Actuator.
  • Using leading HelioSeal technology.
  • Reliable, field-proven design across five generations.
  • HelioSeal design delivers outstanding power efficiency (Watts/TB).
  • 2.5 million hours MTBF rating and a 5-year limited warranty.

The Ultrastar DC HC550 HDD is delivering industry-leading capacity for the data center through a combination of new and proven technologies. Western Digital is the first to manufacture such high-end SSDs for enterprises.

WD TCG- FIPS compliant drives offer the optimum balance of performance, capacity, and cost for the most demanding workloads.

Saitech Inc. is a reseller for PCs, laptops, and computer hardware/software in the USA. We believe in delivering the fastest and reliable service to our customers. Some of the TCG- FIPS WD drives available at our store are:

WD Ultrastar 14TB DC Hc530 Sata HDD


fips 140-2 certified self-encrypting drivesThe WD Ultrastar DC HC530 WUH721414ALE6L4 – 14 TB – SATA 6Gb/s drive is designed to achieve higher capacity with HelioSeal technology implemented. The technology also helps in delivering extreme power efficiency. Field-proven, reliable design is available with a 5-year warranty for $436.15. The enterprise TCG- FIPS WD datacenter drive with 14 TB can solve next-generation data center challenges

Western Digital 10TB Ultrastar Data Center Drive


fips 140-2 compliant external hard drives10TB capacity in a standard 3.5-inch form factor works with all capacity enterprise applications & environments. The data center drive is reliable, field-proven, 3rd generation design and comes with a superior power efficiency (Watts/TB). The is available with 5 years warranty for $ 376.45. The self-encrypting drive is secure to be used for PCs and laptops.

Cisco DC SN640 3.80 TB Solid State Drive

fips 140-2 compliant ssdThis product (Cisco DC SN640 3.80 TB Solid State Drive – 2.5″ – U.2 (SFF-8639) NVMe – Server Device Supported – TAA Compliance) is in high demand and most suitable for enterprise data center usage. The cost of the drive is $ 4611.77 and it is worth spending. The Ultrastar DC SN640 NVMe SSD is a mainstream NVMe™ SSD targeting broad deployment as boot, caching, or primary storage in data center IT and cloud environments. The DC SN640 NVMe SSD is ideal for replacing SATA SSDs by delivering 6x improvement in sequential read performance and 3x improvement in random mixed read/write performance.

HGST Ultrastar He10 HUH721008ALE600 8 TB Internal Hard Drive


Self-encrypting drive (SSD)The drive (HGST Ultrastar He10 HUH721008ALE600 8 TB Internal Hard Drive – SATA – 7200 – 256 MB Buffer) is designed to handle workloads up to 550TB per year by making use of the PMR technology. Based on field-proven, third-generation HelioSeal technology, it offers one of the lowest power profiles in the industry to help data center architects meet eco-environmental goals and requirements. The price of the drive is $363.07

Defender Hdd300 Fips 140-2 Hardware Encrypted External Hard Drive

Western Digital self-encrypting drive(The Defender HDD300 FIPS 140-2 Certified, Hardware Encrypted Secure Hard Drive, 4TB – FIPS 140-2 Certified, Hardware Encrypted, SuperSpeed USB3.0, Remotely Manageable) secure external hard drive provides enterprise organizations with military-grade data protection. With FIPS 140-2 Certified, highly secure 256-AES hardware encryption (XTS mode), high-speed USB 3.0 data transfer rates, is now available for $443.16 with a capacity of 5TB.

We have covered Western Digital Ultrastar Data Center Drives


WD data center  TCG-FIPS compliant drives operate on energy-saving mode and can efficiently run huge data-based applications used in big data and AI applications. TheSSDs are supported by next-generation hardware/ software providing high-performance.

In the end, one of the fascinating fact is that withese TCG-FIPS 140.2 compliance, you have inbuilt SED installed in your system that can provide high end encrypted data without getting into the complex process. If you deal with sensitive data, you must go for the above mentioned SSDs.

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