Which best buy external hard drive for PC or Laptop (2020)
Which best buy an external hard drive for PC and Laptop Buyer Guide
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An external hard drive is always good because it is the best current means to transport heavy data from one site to another. Although there are large-capacity pen drives, external HDDs continue to be chosen because they provide storage that the former cannot offer.
External hard drive – Buying Guide, Opinions and Analysis
When buying a hard drive to have better handling of the data you use regularly, the first thing you should look at is the capacity of the device, since this will give you an idea of whether it will meet your need for storage. Then look at the design and weight of the device, because it is important that you can take it from one place to another without problems. Also, check if it is easily compatible with other devices with which you plan to use it.
How are external hard drives used?
Depending on your computer, you just have to plug it through the USB port and perform the installation or formatting process (if any).
After that, you can drag (or cut and paste) what you need to a directory on your external hard drive and that’s it. It is a really easy process.
Are hard drives reliable? How long do they last?
In general, they are very reliable. Even cheap external hard drives. Some people have them for years before migrating to a different one.
However, there are some that fail right out of the box, although in this case, it would be rather a manufacturing defect.
If you use them to save a lot of data, then they will allow you to get the most out of your money over that period of time.
What do HDD and SSD mean?
HDD means Hard Disk Drive, that is, hard disk drive. These devices require more energy, but they also offer you more space in exchange for your money. If you are looking for cheap external hard drives, they will usually be of the HDD type. In the case of desktop units, their capacity ranges from both: 500 GB and 10 TB.
On the other hand, SSD means Solid State Drive, that is, solid-state drive. These storage systems are faster, although obviously they are more expensive.
A usual comparison for differences in both technologies is that an HDD is the equivalent of looking for a book for a room, while an SSD allows the book to appear magically in your hands.
How are external hard drives maintained?
As with everything you want to last a long time, to maintain your hard drive it is essential that you take care of it correctly.
So disconnect it properly from your computer, unplug it when you don’t use it, and do regular cleaning by deleting unnecessary files.
HDD or SSD?
Again, it depends on your needs. An SSD does not contain moving parts, so it is safer in case you drop it from your backpack. In that case, an HDD unit could break down.
The main attraction of SSD drives is that they are very fast. So fast that you can’t even imagine it unless you use one. So they can be a blessing for people who have congested computers.
On the other hand, HDD drives are perfect for those looking for cheap external hard drives to save a lot of multimedia files, such as videos and music. The reason is that they are more affordable.
Each technology has its advantages and is attractive for different uses of a computer. Specifically, those who simply use their computers to play music and save photographs will benefit more from an HDD unit. However, graphic arts professionals or those who work hard with their computers can benefit from SSDs.
HDD or cloud storage?
We all remember the case of famous people who were robbed of personal files stored in the cloud, which caused widespread panic about this storage method.
So you must consider several factors to decide which system to use. For many, paying only once for a hard drive is a decisive advantage over periodic payments of subscriptions for cloud storage services. However, you will have to have your hard drive with you in case you want to access your files.
Cloud storage will allow you to access your data anytime, anywhere. Therefore, as long as you have nothing compromising, it can be extremely convenient to save images, music or videos without saturating your phone.
As with many problems, the key is to choose what best suits you. So research and discover the right solution for you: cloud storage or cheap external hard drives.
Features to look for in an external hard drive
There are a lot of features that you should look for if you are looking for cheap external hard drives.
- Depending on what your needs are, you should consider storage capacity: it makes no sense to buy 1 TB if you are going to need a second terabyte in a few weeks, so plan your needs properly.
- There is also the speed, which will allow you to transfer your files as quickly as possible. And it is a nuisance to have to keep your computer on all night while copying your files.
- This can also be considered as part of the connectivity. Technology sometimes fails, we all know that, but it can be frustrating that your files get corrupted due to a bad connection.
- The software is another key feature when looking for cheap external hard drives. If it is not compatible with your machine, do not waste your money.
- In the case of external hard drives, you should also take into account the size, since you will take it with you everywhere and you will not want to be weighed in your backpack.
- On the other hand, security is increasingly important, especially due to hacking scandals. If you have sensitive information on your hard drive, then encryption will save you a lot of worries.
WDBU6Y0020BBK Portable External Hard Drive – USB 3.0
- USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 Compatibility
- Fast data transfers
- Improve PC Performance
- High Capacity; Compatibility Formatted NTFS for Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 7; Reformatting may be required for other operating systems; Compatibility may vary depending on user’s hardware configuration and operating system
- 2 year manufacturer’s limited warranty
Seagate Backup Plus Hub External Hard Drive(STEL4000100)
- Store and access content for years
- A great external hard drive for Mac and Windows, this hub can charge mobile devices and transfer files from USB cameras and USB thumb drives via its two USB 3.0 ports
- Use seamlessly between Windows and Mac by installing the provided NTFS driver for Mac
- Enjoy long term included 2 year warranty
Maxone 2.5” Ultra Slim External Portable Hard Drive
- Merely 0.4 inch thick. All-Aluminum anti-scratch model delivers remarkable strength and durability, keeping this portable hard drive running cool and quiet
- A Reliable Game Drive
- This USB hard drive is much faster super-fast transfer speed at up to 5 Gbit/s
- Plug and Play: This external drive is ready to use without external power supply or software installation needed.
Toshiba Canvio Advance Portable External Hard Drive (HDTC910XR3AA)
- Compact design with four vibrant color options to fit your lifestyle
- Up to 3TB of storage capacity to store your growing files and content
- Toshiba Storage Backup Software
- Toshiba Storage Security Software
- Includes Toshiba 2 year standard warranty
LaCie Porsche Design USB-C Mobile Hard Drive,(STFD2000403)
- Delivers speeds of up to 5 GB/s
- Features reversible USB-C connectivity as well as compatibility with USB 3.0 ports
- Massive capacity in a compact size
- Sturdy, all aluminum enclosure while still lightweight and ultra-portable
Finally, there is the durability of your device. Can you bear-human errors? Will it break down after only one or two years? Make the most of your money, but also remember that technology does not last forever.
Frequently asked questions
Q1: How to install an external hard drive?
There is no doubt that more and more the amount of information that we must keep on our computers is greater, so the hard disk fills up quickly. Therefore, it is good to know how to install an external hard drive.
The first thing to do is connect the external disk to a power adapter, however, there are some that work through the power supplied by the USB cable. Then, connect the USB cable through the end of the disk and then to an empty USB port on the computer.
Then, wait for the operating system to detect the hard drive and install the necessary drivers. Finally, check your computer to see if you have already read the information on the disk. If all this process goes well, it is possible to start using the external hard drive.
Q2: Can we use the external hard drive as internal?
Yes, you can, but not with all external hard drives. We recommend that you ask the vendor of the external hard drive if this is possible.
In case the seller or the manufacturer brand assures you that you can use it as an internal disk of a desktop computer, the first thing you should do is remove the case. To do this, preferably use debit cards or the like, so that the external hard disk casing does not deter or scratch. It is better that you leave it intact for when you decide to reuse the disk externally.
Subsequently, at one end you can find a kind of card with the USB connection, which you must remove under pressure. This way you will find the SATA connection, which in turn you will have to use to connect to the desktop computer tower.
Finally, the team must recognize your hard drive. Now proceed to install an operating system, so that you can use the external disk as if you had purchased an internal one.
Q3: What are the main differences between the external hard drive and a Pendrive?
Perhaps one of the most noticeable differences is the size, the first is composed of rotating plates and a head that reads the data. In contrast, pen drives are devices that have a flash memory, which is a smaller chip than a postage stamp.
Also, the pendrives are devices with a much lighter weight and their reading is faster than that of the discs. However, if the latter has a USB 3.0 port, there will be no Pendrive that exceeds them in speed.
On the other hand, there are models of external hard drives that offer up to 4TB of storage, which is now almost impossible for a Pendrive.
Q4: Which is better, an external hard drive or cloud?
The external hard drive is not eternal or no brand ensures that this is the case, that is, it could fail at any time so that the user would lose all the information stored on it.
Therefore, some people prefer to upload all their data to the cloud, for example, OneDrive, Dropbox or other similar applications.
However, other people claim that uploading the information to the cloud means having good Internet connectivity, especially if they are files of 500 GB or more. In this sense, they prefer to backup their data to external hard drives with 3.0 technology, to save files much faster.
Even many people choose to purchase several external hard drives, to back up their most important work files on both devices. They do this just in case any of the discs deteriorate.
Q5: External hard drive vs NAS
The external hard drive you have to connect to various computers to transfer files, so for many, it becomes an unsecured device. However, the external hard drive does not need an Internet connection to operate, so the speed of the Network does not affect its speed in file transfer.
On the other hand, the NAS is a device where you can connect many hard drives at once, being able to access the information of each of them at any time and place, from a computer or telephone with the Internet. In addition, through the NAS you can make backup copies of all the files and have them in the cloud in case there is a problem with the hard drives connected to it.
In summary, the NAS is where you connect all the storage devices to more easily find the files you need at the moment and the external hard drives are the ones that are always at hand for those occasions when you do not have an Internet connection, but that you need to access some specific data.
All this means that if you are one of the people who constantly stores and shares important information, it is best that you acquire the two products, NAS and external hard drive so that you have many more facilities.
Q6: Can the external hard drive be protected against copying?
Yes, most current external hard drives offer a security system that protects the files you have stored from outsiders who want to steal them. This is something you can activate or deactivate on your external hard drive when you configure it for the first time.
Of course, because there are many models of external hard drives and each one has its own configuration forms, it is best to check the user manual or call the manufacturer brand for help in this regard.
Q7: The external hard drive does not open
If the external hard drive, after being connected, does not open on the computer, it is recommended that you check if its drivers are installed. Although most of the discs are Plug and Play and do not need complex installations for the computer to recognize, some do.
In addition, you may have to format the external hard drive, adapting it to the file format read by the computer with which you want to use it. To do this, it is also good to review the original manual that comes with the hard drive or the brand’s website to do this process.
Another aspect we can say is that not all discs are compatible with the operating system you have at home. Maybe you have an Apple MacBook Air and the disk only reads computers with Windows and Linux, therefore, you should check the product description before buying any hard drive.