Amorphous hard carbon films deposited by filtered cathodic arc deposition exhibit very high hardness and elastic modulus, high mass density, low coefficient of friction, and the films are very smooth. All these properties are beneficial to applications of these films for the head/disk interface tribology. The properties of cathodic arc deposited amorphous carbon films are summarized, and they are compared to sputter deposited, hydrogenated (CHx), and nitrogenated (CNx) carbon films which are the present choice for hard disk and slider coatings. New developments in cathodic arc coaters are discussed which are of interest to the disk drive industry. Experiments on the nanotribology, mass density and hardness, corrosion behavior, and tribochemical behavior of cathodic arc films are reported. A number of applications of cathodic arc deposited films to hard disk and slider coatings are described. It is shown that their tribological performance is considerably better compared to CHx and CNx films.