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The RocketMate 100's basic element is aluminum, which allows the hard drive's heat loss to be dissipated fairly well. However, you should still keep a cautious eye on the drive temperature. The higher it is, the shorter the hard drive's life expectancy.
We were highly impressed with the RocketMate 1100. All its ports and control elements are on the rear. HighPoint has labeled the data connection so you don't take it for a Firewire port. We were, however, puzzled (to put it mildly) by the lack of a second Firewire port, which you need to serially connect devices.