Finding the Right External Hard Drive


by Barbara J. Feldman on January 22, 2010

An external hard drive is one of the easiest ways to back up all of your important computer files like your music data, pictures, and work information. What makes external hard drives great is that they are easy to use and they are affordable. Installing memory in your computer can actually be more expensive than just buying an external hard drive.

An external hard drive will allow you to back up your files in a matter or minutes and you have the option of moving them around so they are not dedicated to just one computer. If you deal with large files like graphics and videos, an external hard drive is one of the best investments you can make. It will allow you to have enough space to keep all of these safe and protected and off of your computer so it can continue to function properly. The best thing you can do is to keep your main hard drive as clean as possible. This is the easiest way to make sure it will run properly.

The one disadvantage to an external hard drive is that it will not be as fast as your internal hard drive. However, it still has a valuable purpose and that is to keep your files save. External hard drives do not crash, so you once you place your files on it you never have to worry about losing them. If you want the external hard drive to be faster, you need to consider using the external hard drive with a firewire connection.

Depending upon the type of external hard drive you purchase, it may need a separate power source. If this is the case, you need to use a surge protector to keep your files safe from a power surge which could potentially melt the box. However, most external hard drives are plugged directly into the computer through a USB cord and they will use the power from the computer.

When you are searching for an external hard drive, you need to determine what your needs are. Do you want it to be dedicated to one computer or would you like to use it on a variety of computers? An external hard drive that needs a separate power source is less portable so it is important to keep this in mind when you are shopping around for one. Depending upon just how much space you need, you may need to consider buying an external hard drive with a separate power source to hold all of your files. Music, pictures, and video files all take up a ton of room and it’s a wise decision to consider buying an external hard drive with at least 1TB of storage. If you have more than one person that uses the computer, you should consider at least 1TB or 2TB of storage just to be safe.

Of course the price will always play a large factor in your ability to purchase an external hard drive. Instead of going to a retail store, consider looking online. You can get a used external hard drive for half the price and it will still work great. The seller is most likely getting rid of it because they have simply outgrown it. NewEgg.com is one of the best sites to look at if you want an external hard drive. You should also consider looking at Ebay.com for an external hard drive.

Most external hard drives do not have separate software that they need to install in order to work properly. Most are plug-and-play drives. Do your research before you buy an external hard drive, some brands will require software to be installed on your computer before you use it. You also need to check and make sure that the drive is compatible with your computer. If your computer’s operating system cannot recognize it, you will be unable to use it.


More tips like this one in Online Trends



i-SAFE Internet Safety Activities: Reproducible Projects for Teachers and Parents, Grades K-8
i-SAFE Internet Safety Activities: Reproducible Projects for Teachers and...
by iSafe
(Paperback)
- Usually ships in 24 hours
Price: $15.24

A Parents Guide to Online Safety
A Parents Guide to Online Safety
by Doug Fodeman, Marje Monroe
(Paperback)
- Usually ships in 24 hours
Price: $11.77

Growing Up Online: A Must Have Guide for Parents, Teachers, and Kids
Growing Up Online: A Must Have Guide for Parents, Teachers, and Kids
by NBC News
(Kindle Edition)