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Buying a 1TB external hard drive - any advice


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I think the motherboard on my desktop has packed in and it is not worth paying to have it repaired. This laptop I have is not the greatest but it is good enough however the only problem is it only has a 28Gb hard drive which is currently about 90% full.

I can still access my old PC on my home network so can drag the data onto this laptop however I will need a lot more storage space to fit it all on (also this laptop is not guaranteed to last long).

So I am thinking of buying a 1TB external hard drive which I will plug into this laptop and dump all my data on including back ups of this place.

Been shopping around and this seems to be a pretty decent deal

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Buffalo-DriveStation...=item4aa0b5639c

however not really an area I am too clued up on. Anyone have any good advice (low cost is very important!!!)?

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The 1TB idea is so that it can last for a hell of a long time. I currently have two PCs and one laptop in the house. My main PC is the one that is knackered and it has a lot more than 28 GB on it. I would need to move all of that onto the external drive, and then I would put the data on this laptop onto it (bar live data) and would also back up my wife's PC onto it.

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The 1TB idea is so that it can last for a hell of a long time. I currently have two PCs and one laptop in the house. My main PC is the one that is knackered and it has a lot more than 28 GB on it. I would need to move all of that onto the external drive, and then I would put the data on this laptop onto it (bar live data) and would also back up my wife's PC onto it.

Ah fair enough. Then I'd say go for it.

What you could do if you wanted to show off, is connect the external drive to your wife's PC and set it up as a shared drive, over the network. That way you don't have to keep it connected to the laptop, and as long as your laptop is connected to the network you'll have access to it. You could map it as a drive too.... just a thought.

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Thinking on it, if you do that, you could buy a normal hard drive and put it in your wife's PC... it might save you a couple of quid and would be faster than the USB 2.0 would, but would mean opening up her computer... not sure how confident you are with that sort of thing, but it's a thought.

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My wife's PC is as unreliable as my one that just died. All the kit in the house has a T'Rex stamped on the side. The external hard drive is the one that appeals to me as I can use it as a back up device which is easily transferrable. My PC that has just died has a second hard drive in it so I may think about rescuing that out of there and putting it in my wife's at some point.

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My wife's PC is as unreliable as my one that just died. All the kit in the house has a T'Rex stamped on the side. The external hard drive is the one that appeals to me as I can use it as a back up device which is easily transferrable. My PC that has just died has a second hard drive in it so I may think about rescuing that out of there and putting it in my wife's at some point.

Ah fair enough, sounds like you have it all planned out.

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As for the HD itself, I'd advise one with a built-in cooling system. These are usually more expensive, but also less likely to overheat. If not, then don't turn the thing on for long periods. If the HD is meant only to back things up, then copy whatever files need storing and disconnect it. Try not to use it as a drive for installations and such.

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My advice would be to buy two 500gb drives. If you have just one 1TB how will you back up your data? If the drive dies or gets nicked or gets lost when you leave your briefcase on the tube you'll have lost everything.

500gb should last a good while, and when it's full 1TB drives will be cheaper than they are now. And smaller.

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I'd agree that two 500Gb drives might well suit you better than a single 1TB drive.

I've got an external Buffalo 1TB. Decent drive but takes a while to load when connecting, during which time the system is temporarily inaccessible. Once fully loaded however, access times are pretty fast. This is a 2500 Mhz dual core system with 2Gb RAM. I'd imagine that loading time would be less on a faster machine with more memory.

I'd also recommend connecting/disconnecting the drive(s) as and when you need it. Apart from the risk of overheating and subsequent data loss, having it connected when turning the computer on can add substantially to boot time.

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My advice would be to buy two 500gb drives. If you have just one 1TB how will you back up your data? If the drive dies or gets nicked or gets lost when you leave your briefcase on the tube you'll have lost everything.

500gb should last a good while, and when it's full 1TB drives will be cheaper than they are now. And smaller.

Theres no need to buy 2 HDD`s, you can buy units with 2 built in and it will use raid to ghost it across the 2 HDD`s. Loz, if you want to go really clever you could get a network drive thats able to plug into your TV so you can listen and watch on the telly.

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I have a T1 media HD from IcyBox, buy the T1 and use partition magic to partition it, you coul do 2 x 500G paritions (1 for media storage and the other for general storage) and you could maybe also use a 3rd partition to back up your OS on your laptop.

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I agree with dkw on buying a network able external HD, they are life savers for anyone involved in photo editing, or any kind of massive file storage and movement. If you have a satellite/cable receiver, some even allow a direct connection (so you could save all your Chelsea games :P). Brand wise, out of personal experience, I would recommend any HD from the LaCie (http://www.lacie.com/). I've had mine for a year now, no problems whatsoever, and it constantly has to handle new files and movement (20 GB of music/ 35 GB of film/ 100GB of photos).

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I agree with dkw on buying a network able external HD, they are life savers for anyone involved in photo editing, or any kind of massive file storage and movement. If you have a satellite/cable receiver, some even allow a direct connection (so you could save all your Chelsea games :happy001:). Brand wise, out of personal experience, I would recommend any HD from the LaCie (http://www.lacie.com/). I've had mine for a year now, no problems whatsoever, and it constantly has to handle new files and movement (20 GB of music/ 35 GB of film/ 100GB of photos).

My mate bought this before xmas and i helped him set it up. Belting little piece of equipment, means you can stream from either the net or a HDD over a network to a tv. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Xtreamer-Media-Pla...a/dp/B002OH382O

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Loz, my existing external hard-drive, a Maxtor OneTouch4 (700GB), has recently become full, so I've just bought myself a second external hard-drive, a Hitachi 1.0TB USB 2.0 simpledrive, for about £65.

I'd recommend either of them for price, and they're both really easy to use. Now all I've got to do is sort out all my music files, video files, music video files, photo files and gawd knows what else!

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My mate bought this before xmas and i helped him set it up. Belting little piece of equipment, means you can stream from either the net or a HDD over a network to a tv. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Xtreamer-Media-Pla...a/dp/B002OH382O

I have the xtreamer and cannot speak highly enough of it. If you are going to be streaming videos though it i would advise an wireless 'n' enabled network.

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I have the xtreamer and cannot speak highly enough of it. If you are going to be streaming videos though it i would advise an wireless 'n' enabled network.

Im currently trying to convince my wife why its such a good idea to buy one, she`s not biting though. can get one with wireless antenna for £90 which is a decent price for what it is.

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Im currently trying to convince my wife why its such a good idea to buy one, she`s not biting though. can get one with wireless antenna for £90 which is a decent price for what it is.

yep great price, id get the cooler too if i was you.

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Does it have a problem with heating?

Yeah it can quite hot without the fan ive heard , though it does make it a little noiser. But there are fan speed settings you can play about with that normally sort the trick for me.

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