Back in the 80s, a hard drive was a major computing luxury. After all, there were still people that were using cassette drives for storage at that time!
For most people hard drives didn’t really become affordable until the late 80s and early 90s. I got my first hard drive for my Atari 1040ST in 1991. It was a Quantum 105MB SCSI drive in an external case that connected to the ST using its ACSI port. This port provided DMA access and thus fast transfer speeds. Despite the similarity in its name, it was not SCSI compatible — the ST needed an interface board between the SCSI hard drive and the computer, which added about $100 or so to the hard drive cost. I seem to recall that I paid around $400 for this hard drive.
Getting a hard drive for an ST today can be a bit tricky. Those old hard drives are unreliable and only getting worse. Plus they are slow, noisy and bulky. A better way is to instead use an emulator of some kind.
There are two that I know of for the ST:
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