Tips For Buying An External Hard Drive
External hard drives or portable hard drives aren’t anything new on the earth of technology, however they do offer ongoing benefits that keep making them fresh and creative products for the businessman or recreational user on the go. A portable external drive can back up vital data information and free up disk space on your main computer. But that is only the beginning of what they can do. Discovering all the ways that external drives can change your life will open up a world of possibilities for business and pleasure. If you have never bought an external hard drive before then there is a few suggestions here that might help to have on your shopping list before going to make that final purchase.
Tips For Buying An External Hard Drive
1. Buy A Good Brand Name
Do yourself a big favor and buy a brand name that you easily identify. Sure this can cost a little more than brand x but with computer accessories like this you will get what you pay for. If a Western Digital 250GB external drive costs $100 and another brand x 250GB drive costs $80 why do you think that is? Because the company likes you? Simply because they like making smaller profits? No it is because it is a cheaper drive made with inferior parts that is going to break quicker than you might expect.
Another aspect of sticking with a brand name is your warranty. For Western Digital, Maxtor and Iomega are all reputable companies and well-known for their external hard drives. If something goes wrong with your drive you will get it fixed. With brand x you will probably not even be able to find their email that you can contact the parent company on. Is saving a few bucks worth that risk?
2. Google It
Whatever brand or model you choose be sure you do some research before purchasing. Always, always Google the exact brand name and model of the drive you are considering buying. Search for reviews and particularly any feedback on how reliable a drive is. You will be very surprised to find that some companies have particularly bad reputations regarding equipment reliability and what is known as the “click of death” in the external hard drive industry.
Spend some time in Google checking out your prospective purchase. You will be glad that you did.
In terms of external hard drives you will need to choose carefully in choosing your connection types. Your external hard drive will support either USB or Firewire. Firewire is the fastest option available at the moment but your computer might not support this. Most modern computers will, however, have a USB port.
The next question now is what type of USB port do you have – USB 1.0 or 2.0? If your computer only has a USB 1.0 port then your external hard drive is going to transfer data VERY slowly. USB 2.0 is the minimum you should consider as connection options for both your computer and your external hard drive. If you don’t have a USB 2.0 port (also known as HiSpeed USB) on your computer you may want to get a USB 2.0 card fitted.
4. Size of External Hard Drive
This can be a simple part of the whole “buying an external hard drive” equation. Buy as much as you can afford. If you’re able to afford 100GB then get it. However if you can afford 200GB then get it. On the other hand if you scraped together a few bucks more you could afford 300GB then do it.
This is not a sales pitch. Far from it. There is simply no such thing as having too much data storage space. The 160GB drive that I have here was filled up in a little under a month. At the moment a terabye option sounds good for my future needs.
5. Speed of External Hard Drive
Now of course we have to talk about speed. The faster your hard drive operates the faster data will get transferred to your computer and vice versa. Without boggling you with computer jargon there’s a couple of technical things you need to include on your shopping list.
RPM – higher is way better. 5400rpm at least. 7200rpm being preferred.
Seek time – this needs to be 10ms (milliseconds) or less
Buffer size – more is more preferable. Get a drive with no less than a 4MB buffer.
Stick to the above basic suggestions and you will do just fine.
Always add 50% to your data storage requirements. Honestly. You’ll thanks yourself within the first 3 months of buying your external drive.
Hopefully, now you will be better ready for purchasing your brand-new external hard drive. It’s one of the best expenses you’ll ever make.
(Tips For Buying An External Hard Drive)