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2radical
Titel: external drives  BeitragVerfasst am: 09.10.2006, 14:50 Uhr



Anmeldung: 07. Dez 2005
Beiträge: 369
Wohnort: Port Angeles, Wa. USA
I'm interested in getting an external USB drive for backups but don't know much about them. I'd appreciate any recommendations on make, size, cost, etc. Thanks...

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ockham23
Titel: external drives  BeitragVerfasst am: 09.10.2006, 15:03 Uhr



Anmeldung: 25. Mar 2005
Beiträge: 2100

If you want to use the external drive for stationary backups only, consider upgrading an old PIII machine with a new hard drive instead. You can install Kanotix on this machine and control it with ssh/freenx, no need for monitor, mouse or keyboard. All you need is a LAN connection. And if your main computer should fail for some reason, the backup machine is ready to use.

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markb
Titel: RE: external drives  BeitragVerfasst am: 09.10.2006, 23:16 Uhr



Anmeldung: 09. Aug 2004
Beiträge: 121
Wohnort: Brisbane Australia
Ockham's suggestion above is a good one. Also, if you really want a small portable pluggable drive then just buy a standard internal IDE 3.5" PATA or SATA cost effective drive (e.g. 320G is the best price point atm where I am) and put it in a cheap external USB2 enclosure. I bought an enclosure for $20 a couple of weeks ago. Far far cheaper but just as effective (and generally much bigger in disk capacity) as buying one of the purpose-built external drives you will see around.
 
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hubi
Titel: RE: external drives  BeitragVerfasst am: 09.10.2006, 23:27 Uhr



Anmeldung: 22. Jan 2006
Beiträge: 1296
Wohnort: Budapest
2radical,

I use old IDE drives in USB cases for backups resp. storage. So I can use them on different boxes as well to swap files between them. They are really convenient.

A combination of an IDE drive and a USB case might be far cheaper than one in all solutions, and most of the time they are switched off anyway, so that's ok.

If you want to use them all the time, cooling might be a problem and a complete external solution from e.g. Seagate might be better.

Just have a look at the computer store round the corner Winken

hubi

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h2
Titel: RE: external drives  BeitragVerfasst am: 09.10.2006, 23:47 Uhr



Anmeldung: 12. Mar 2005
Beiträge: 1005

2radical, they are really cheap now, any decent brand is fine, you can get for example western digital or maxtor all in one drives, or you can get a standalone 3.5 or 5.25" usb drive enclosure.

things to watch for: on off switch. Fan, ideally, or else these can get very very hot, and heat is not the friend of any electronic component, but if you always turn it off, it should be fine.

Western digital drives will be a bit cheaper than seagate stuff, but for backup it doesn't really matter since they shouldn't be turned on much during their active lives. Avoid cheap cheap stuff, it tends to not pay since it breaks so fast. But it doesn't really matter, as long as the drive itself is seagate, maxtor, or western digital, and the case or enclosure is reasonably durable, it's fine. USB is more universal than firewire, so get that.

You should be able to find an all in one, or enclosure plus drive on sale, for about $100 or less US, get the biggest you can afford, 120 or 160 gig at least.

I aslo found an enclosure on sale, with rebate, which I usually avoid, but the actual price was fine, but the unit got too hot so I drilled it full of cooling holes, now it's warm but not boiling any more.

My favorite are the larger 5 /14 drives enclosures with fans, those keep the drives nice and cool, and tend to be pretty durable, but they cost more.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6822136022
that's 250 gig all in one unit, western digital. I prefer buying case and drive separate because it's easier to swap drives, but these prices are really cheap.

or a seagate, which is my prefered brand because they actually back up their products with 5 year warranty.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductLi ... tegory=414

or something like this:
http://www.newegg.com/ProductSort/SubCa ... ategory=92
plus a hard drive, which you can now pick up for about $70 for a decently large one. Vantec, ads, cooler master, thermaltake might be more trustworthy than other names, hard to say.

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2radical
Titel:   BeitragVerfasst am: 10.10.2006, 01:59 Uhr



Anmeldung: 07. Dez 2005
Beiträge: 369
Wohnort: Port Angeles, Wa. USA
WOW thanks Smilie I can't believe I forgot about newegg.com. That's where I got my my flatscreen 17" LG monitor from. (Certainly not at the top but it seems to work OK) Excellent delivery time too, as I recall.
Hmmm...I have an extra slot in my box for another HD, so maybe I should go that route, but I'm not sure about how to go about doing that. I'll have to look into it. I went to Staples today & noticed that the HD's were in the neighborhood of $150+. People here are pretty limited for outlets so online ordering is probably the best way to go, sad to say.
My needs are pretty simple, & I guess I'm way behind the times. (being an old fogey so to speak) As it is, I've only got a 40GB WD HD now for my main drive. I don't download much of anything. No MP3's, videos, etc. so I don't need a lot of room. I couldn't even find a drive today under 120GB. Seems kinda silly to me to have a backup drive bigger than my regular one, but nobody even seems to even have one.

Oh well. Maybe I'll just go for the gusto & get a big one & use my 40GB for backups if I can figure out how to safely transfer the system. Excuse my ignorance Winken

kurt

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Swynndla
Titel:   BeitragVerfasst am: 10.10.2006, 03:06 Uhr



Anmeldung: 05. Dez 2005
Beiträge: 414
Wohnort: Auckland, New Zealand
Actually, if you use rdiff-backup, and if you are backing up the whole of your 40GB drive, and because rdiff-backup holds a clear copy and also a history of incremental backups (or you can restore not only to the last backup but your can restore to a state that was a few backups ago) then you'd need backup drive bigger than 40GB. So it's quite common for backup drives to be bigger than your main drive (especially if you use it to back up more than one pc).

Of course you might not want to backup your entire 40GB drive. But if I were you, I'd still get the big drive (eg 300 GB) and use that as the backup drive and put it in your pc. Not only is it the cheapest option, but then you can set up nightly backups to occur automatically. And not only that but the room that rdiff-bacups didn't use, you could use as some extra storage (storage of the type you don't really care if you lost it, as it wouldn't be backed up). This method involves the least amount of work on your part.

Crikey, you'd have so much room that you could keep five years worth of backups easily ... imagine deleting a file and a couple of years later wanting it back again Winken

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2radical
Titel:   BeitragVerfasst am: 10.10.2006, 04:28 Uhr



Anmeldung: 07. Dez 2005
Beiträge: 369
Wohnort: Port Angeles, Wa. USA
Thanks Swynndla. I wasn't aware that it was common for backup drives to be larger. I won't need to backup all 40 Gigs, but it's reassuring to know if a purchase a bigger drive I'll have those type of options. I'm thing maybe 120, but whatever it's going to have to wait until the end of this month anyway for me to afford.

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