External hard drive power

  1901tom 05:05 18 Jan 2010

Hi folks,

I've been looking at external hard drives and they all seem to be connected via USB2. Trouble is my PC only has USB1.

Besides that, i've looked at a few other posts on here and the recommendation seems to be to get one that has its own power supply.

I'm looking for 500GB - 1TB, no more than £70.

Any advice?


  tullie 06:43 18 Jan 2010

USB is backward compatible,so no problem.Yes,get one that is powered from mains.

  mgmcc 07:59 18 Jan 2010

Although you will be able to use an external drive with a USB 1.1 port, it will be slow. USB 1.1 operates at 12Mbps whereas USB 2.0 is forty times as fast at 480Mbps.

If you have a spare PCI slot on the motherboard, you could install a USB 2.0 PCI card to implement the faster connection.

  1901tom 03:07 19 Jan 2010

What i want it for is as a backup of the current hard drive - should anything go wrong.

Updating it fortnightly for example. The current drive is about 300GB.

So i wouldn't really be working from it, just saving to it. Would the USB1 still be a major pain?

Thanks for ur help and suggestions

  mole44 06:49 19 Jan 2010

Do your backup overnight,i use Norton Ghost to do mine,However i do have USB 2.0.As for the extra card i use and recomend Belkin,works perfect for me,i`m running vista 64bit.All my 12 Usb ports on my pc work fine as well.

  Batch 09:16 19 Jan 2010

Have you upgraded to a 300GB HDD? I only ask as if your PC came with a 300GB HDD it seems inconceivable that it doesn't have USB 2.0 (i.e. USB 2.0 has been around quite a long time and it is unlikely that a new PC supplied with a 300GB drive would not have USB 2.0).

In any event, have you considered installing another hard drive inside the system unit for backup purposes (assuming there is space etc.)? The drawback with this is that, as such a drive is powered on all the time, it could be affected by other issues that might affect the PC at any time (e.g. malware, power surges etc.).

If you do want to consider an additional internal HDD and your system is genuinely USB 1.1, the HDD would surely be IDE / PATA type (i.e. not SATA).

  1901tom 02:15 20 Jan 2010

Yes, it has been upgraded, it's definitely USB 1.1

Thanks for ur suggestions and help, still thinking about it>


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