External Hard drives

  Southernboy 22:43 02 Oct 2003

I want to purchase an external hard drive (USB2) to use with two PCs. One has W98SE and the other has XP. One has USB1 and the other USB2. The drive is to be used for backup purposes and will be 80Gb. Backup software would be useful, but not essential, as I would mainly use the "Send To" option to backup and restore files between the two PCs.

I have researched the market as far as I can and have come up with three possibilities:-

1. Iomega
2. LaCie
3. Maxtor

Dabs list only the first two and I wondered if anyone has used either of these and, if so, what they thought about them. I phoned one dealer who told me they have stopped stocking LaCie because of "warranty problems", but would not elaborate.

any views would be welcome.

  GANDALF <|:-)> 00:05 03 Oct 2003

I use a maxtor 40Gb drive and it works well. I would imagine that the others work equally well.


  -pops- 06:58 03 Oct 2003

Before you part with your money, check on the economics of putting a standard IDE drive into an external enclosure yourself - which is, after all, what is done with the commercial prebuilt ones.

I have installed a number of devices (DVD writer, hard drives, CD writer) into click here with complete success.

  Southernboy 14:43 05 Oct 2003

but no thanks.

I can appreciate your helpful reply, but I am not technically minded and prefer to buy something "off the peg" that is simply plug and play.

Thanks for the comments on Maxtor. Anyone use LaCie or Iomega USB HDs?

  Big Elf 15:02 05 Oct 2003

I have a Freecom 120GB USB 2.0 hard drive that I bought from click here

It works fine on my XP system and seems reasonably fast. The one button data-synchronization feature apparently uses MS Binder but I haven't installed that. The driver supplied is for Win98SE but is not needed for XP. However you do need Service Pack 1 for the USB 2.0 capability to be enabled.

  Big Elf 15:06 05 Oct 2003

Sorry, brain was in neutral. It use the MS Briefcase and not Binder for synchronization.

  Diemmess 15:10 05 Oct 2003

In a must-have frenzy I bought an Amacom 40Gb USB 2 external drive. Apart from the price which was a little "up-market" it installed and works fine between all sorts of PC and laptop kits.
Initially I did not have USB 2, and buying a cheap card vastly improved data transfer but - overall it does what it should without fuss.

  byfordr 16:13 06 Oct 2003

Try click here

£215 for a maxtor 250gb
£200 for a maxtor 200gb
£160 for a maxtor 160gb

All usb2 and firewire. Seems like a bit of a barjin to me. If their external drives are as good as their internal ones. Maxtor seem the way to go.


  Southernboy 13:12 08 Oct 2003

In the absence of any praise for LaCie or Iomega, Maxtor seem the best bet. However, I certainly do not need more than 80Gb. I have barely used 2Gb on the HD of my new PC.

I have found an 80Gb Maxtor on the Dabs site which states that it is compatible with USB1 and USB2. I assume it will work equally well with W98SE and XP?

A couple of questions, please.

1. At present, my 98SE PC has (in addition to floppy), Drive C (HD), Drive D (Zip) and Drive E (CD-ROM). No CDRW, DVD or any other drive. When I install an external HD, will it become Drive F? I have heard that it may takeover letter D and, if so, do the two other drives recategorise themselves?

2. With the Send To option, can one save time by sending a Folder with all its contents, or does one have to send files individually?

3. Is there any danger of picking up a virus, say, from a HD that has been returned and re-sold by the retailer? Silly question, maybe, but only my XP PC is connected to the net, and the other PC does not have any anti-virus software. Initially, the external drive would only be used on the non-internet PC which is owned by my Dad.

Thanks again to all.

  Diemmess 15:59 08 Oct 2003

(1) A guess, based on mine. It will take the drive letter before the CD, and shove the CD letter one place further down the alphabet.

(2) Sure, you can copy whole chunks folder, and multiples depending on what you select.

(3) Why not install the HD on the XP outfit and scan it there, before putting it to serious use on the non-internet PC?

  MichelleC 16:01 08 Oct 2003

1. Not sure as it's a while since I had 98. I think the ext hd became the next letter (f in your case). Anyway, it's no prob.

2. If you get Drive Image (or Ghost) it'll clone as little or as much of hd as you want.

3. Little chance of getting bug as 1st thing they do is format used hd's. (only thing with 98 is you won't be able to format over 32gb without patch at later date + not sure you can format via dos for external device).

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