Computer Hardware

Storage Shortage Caused by New Cryptocurrency

May 20, 2021 • 4 min read


Green Cryptocurrency Chiacoin Causes Computer Storage Supply Disruption

In case you missed it, a recent graphic card shortage occurred as cryptocurrency miners quickly bought up the latest (and eventually older) GPUs, leaving many gamers and researchers scrambling to find anything for themselves. Now, the crypto craze is beginning to see shortages on other computer components as well, including hard drives and Solid State Drives (SSD).

Some of this new drive demand is being driven by Chia.


What is Chia?

Chia is designed to be an eco-friendly cryptocurrency. Chia is the brainchild of Bram Cohen, the inventor of BitTorrent, and runs on a ‘proof of space and time’ basis, which is a proof of space referring to storage capacity, with time added as an additional factor. Compared to a traditional proof of work model, which relies on power-hungry GPUs, Chia leverages the power of the hard drives or SSDs using way less power and is better for our environment in the long run.

The “proof of space and time” model is central to Chia’s value. This allows users to “seed” their hard drives or SSDs with certain software that puts cryptographic numbers into specific plots. The plots are awarded with blocks from the blockchain based on the percentage of total space. Chia Networks announced their system will provide better security than Ethereum and better energy-cost compared to other cryptocurrencies.

Chia also doesn’t require huge hard drives for casual miners, even 4TB hard drives can work just fine. However, for prospective investors, high-capacity storage drives are recommended, especially enterprise-class.

A few enterprise class hard drives that are perfect for Chia farming are:

Seagate 16TB enterprise


Seagate 14TB enterprise


Western Digital (WD) 18TB enterprise


Interest in Chia has already led to bulk buying and mass purchasing of enterprise level storage since early April. From comparative custom-made storage to vast enterprise-level SSD, all of them can handle the performance required by Chia, which has severely impacted the availability and market demand of enterprise-level SSD and hard drives, as well as commercial SSD to a lesser degree. In fact, utilizing this comparatively consumer-grade storage on-mass with the right hardware environment can still produce profitable results, although there have been many articles warning that Chia can ruin a consumer level storage device quickly (within weeks!).

Investors and cryptocurrency miners are showing strong interest in Chia and the company behind it, Chia Network. It doesn’t matter if they are professional miners or just a casual farmer, everyone wants to be one of the first to jump into this latest crypto fad.

With this new demand, we expect the storage shortage will continue for at least another 3-4 months.

If you have any questions or want to suggest some other topics for us to focus on, please feel free to contact us.






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