Yeah, after following your link to the thread of the reformatting, I don't know if this is for me right now.
Well, if the time ever comes, at least you'll have a reference.
I too use external drives for storage, however, I don't buy enclosures with drives in them. I have an dual-drive enclosure that allows me to swap out drives so when one gets full, I pull it, and put another on inside. I do a lot of video stuff, so I go through harddrives like mad! Personally, I only use Segates, but that's only because I've been happy with them. I guess compared to others, Seagates crash just as much, so you end up taking your chances no matter who you go with.
Well, I've really been thinking of getting this thingamajig.
This utilizes SATA drives, with a USB computer interface. So far the comments are pretty decent... don't be fooled by 82%... that's not too bad on Newegg. If you think about it, one of these days ATA (IDE, PATA) drives will go the way of the dodo, and SATA will be all you can get/use. If you were to get something like this, you could install a SATA drive that you could possibly use in the future, if you ever upgraded your computer. Of course, one day this thing too will be obsolete, but I don't see that happening very soon. This thing is only $40, and if you got this drive
, (which is what I actually use), then you would spend a little over $110 after you're all done. Plus, if for some reason you ran out of space on this drive, all you would have to do is pull it out and stick another one in! How convenient is that??? The thing about enclosures, is that they get warm. Using this thing, the drive would stay cool, and you could pull it out if you weren't using it anyways. Another thing is that it supports laptop SATA drives, which is good for me since I do repairs on people's laptops, but for you, it may not be that important. Something to think about though. Unfortunately, it doesn't support ATA drives, so that's the down side.
As for the many questions you have in your mind about external drives, just think about them like they're "floppies". They do need to be formatted, just like a floppy, if you buy a stand-alone drive. Windows will not recognize the drive if it's not formatted. However, windows can format the drive for you or you can use the manufactures disk utility. Nothing difficult, but if you need help, just let me know. If you buy an USB enclosure that already comes with a drive installed in it, it is normally already formatted, so all you have to do is connect it to the computer and you're good to go. As far as having to install Windows on the drive... no, you don't have to do that.
It's hard for me to recommend something only because I can only base my recommendations on what "I" would use. There are so many options out there and the user really has to make the choice. One of my friends just bought this thing
and he seems to be happy with it. It seems to work well for him, but for me... well, it wouldn't. So... I guess you just have to hunt around and sort of think about what "you" actually require.
As far as cleaning up your trash, and defragging, etc, that should help with speeding things up for you. If you don't already use ATF Cleaner, I highly recommend it. It'll clean up a lot of trash for you out of your temp and internet folders. You can download it from my signature.
Edited by makai, 13 December 2008 - 11:54 PM.