- December 15, 2012 at 2:45 am #29501
The Seagate Expansion 2TB USB 3.0 External Hard Drive STBV2000100 is a good option as a backup drive, or as an expansion drive that isn't used intensively. It may also serve well as a working drive that's used more intensively but for temporary or replaceable files – such as a scratch drive or a media server.This drive is large enough and priced low enough that you can backup multiple computers for not a lot of money.However, if you're looking for an expansion drive - a second drive to augment a laptop or desktop - that you will use intensively, consider options with cooling and perhaps backup, especially if you will use the drive for your only copy of files.A DESKTOP DRIVE: This is a desktop drive, not a truly portable drive. You could use it to backup multiple computers around a home or office, but you're not going to enjoy carrying the drive and the power supply.A FAST CONNECTION: USB 3.0 really is fun to use, if you have the right port on your computer to use it. No more sitting around watching file transfers - the speeds are similar to those of a built in drive.KEEP A BACKUP: One of the keys to happiness in modern life is to keep at least two copies of every computer file you need. If you have anything you would rather not have vanish tomorrow, get a hard drive - any hard drive - and make a copy. Right now. Err on the side of caution.ALL HARD DRIVES FAIL - SO REPLACE THEM BEFORE THEY DO: Hard drives are complex mechanical devices. They will absolutely, inevitably fail. So manage them accordingly.I replace all my drives after about three to four years (if they survive that long). It's much easier to replace a drive before it fails - it's very easy to copy a readable drive. It's much harder to recreate a drive, especially a boot drive, after it fails - you need to reinstall all the software and settings, and maybe reconstruct the folder structure.And hard drives are cheap enough to make it not worth the risk to keep drives around longer than that. I can usually get a bigger, faster drive for much less money than the original drive.Once you start to accept the reality that hard drives will fail, and manage your drives and data appropriately, you can drastically reduce the disruption that hard drive failures cause.BUY A GOOD MODEL OF DRIVE, THEN KEEP A CURRENT BACKUP: As much as people like to claim that particular brands are better or worse, statistics don't really seem to back that up. Buy a good model from one of the top brands - Seagate, Western Digital, Hitachi, Samsung - and then manage them as described above.That being said - some drives (or the firmware they are shipped with) have turned out to be real lemons. Most of the big manufacturers make good drive models, and they have made bad drive models. So much like your uncle, who never bought a new model car until they'd worked the bugs out of it - let someone else be at the bleeding edge of hard drives. Buy models that have been tested by other users.It's a little soon to tell for the drive installed in this particular model, and some of the early feedback is mixed.COOLING QUESTIONS: I can't really figure out why the cooling is so unconvincing on almost all external drives (like this one). A tight-fitting plastic case, with no effective ventilation? Really? While drive temperature isn't perhaps quite as big an issue as some would make it out to be - that level of cooling just doesn't seem adequate for a drive that's running more than a fraction of the time. If your needs fit that description - that is, if you need a back up drive, or an intermittently used expansion drive - then this Seagate external drive may be a good matchFOR AN INTENSIVELY USED EXPANSION DRIVE, CONSIDER OTHER OPTIONS: If you need more space in an expansion drive, and plan to use the drive intensively, consider other options. Perhaps a NAS (network attached storage) or a drive enclosure with more effective cooling, and possibly something with multiple drives and built in backup.WATCH HOW YOUR DRIVES ARE SHIPPED: One of the key factors in whether a drive will last is how it's handled and shipped. External drives such as this one are usually packaged somewhat well, although online vendors still don't seem to really get the concept of filling the shipping box so the product inside doesn't bounce around on its way to you.See the external hard drive buying guide published on Tips4pc.
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