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What External Hard Drive to choose?

Last response: in Storage
November 28, 2008 3:37:33 PM

I see there are various forms of external HD’s these days and it almost seems like they are in a class themselves.

I just wanted to get some thoughts of the different types and advantages and disadvantages.

Thanks for any input! :) 
November 28, 2008 4:10:59 PM

What Operating System and service pack do you have?
ie: Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP service pack 1, 2 or 3, Vista, Mac etc.

What external ports do you have, USB, IEEE 1394 (firewire) ESATA ?

Does your Motherboard have SATA interface?

It will help if you could provide information so you get the right recomendations.
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November 28, 2008 4:33:13 PM

I have Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit (with all the updates).

I have all of those ports you listed.
November 28, 2008 5:02:06 PM

E-SATA is the fastest and USB is the most versatile. With Vista you can Hot swap an external SATA (E-SATA) HDD. USB is just about 100% universal. Meaning you can take your HDD with you and axcess the data on the HDD from almost any computer.

My choice is An external HDD that has E-SATA and USB.

Rosewill RX-358-S SLV (Silver) 3.5" SATA to USB & eSATA Ext. Enclosure w/Int.80mm fan $24.99

Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive $69.99

You might want more or less storage.
The enclosure comes with all the cables you will need and a power supply.


Another good choice would be a dock. If you need to transfer data to multipal HDD's

The enclosure is ON SALE RIGHT NOW. Regular price $49.99

November 28, 2008 5:21:33 PM

Do they all require you to carry a power adapter with you?
November 28, 2008 5:37:32 PM

Most of them do. I dont know ALL of them but all that I have used or seen require a power supply/adaptor.
December 2, 2008 1:42:21 AM

Large 3.5in external drives that are used in desktops all use power supply's. Smaller and slower laptop 2.5in drives are usually powered over the USB port if you have USB 2.0. Laptops drives are more expensive per gig.