A sourcelist of external desktop hard drives.
By Clare Baker
Newer Technology’s miniStack V2 offers dual interface connectivity with three USB 2.0 ports and two FireWire 400 ports. Featuring a drive speed of 7200 RPM, the drive is available in capacities of 80, 160, 250, 320, 400, 500, and 750 GB. The plug-and-play miniStack V2 is equipped with an interactive cooling system and a smart power switch that allows the hard drive to power up and down in tandem with the connected computer. Utility software, including backup solutions for PCs and Macs, is included. FireWire and USB 1.1 connectivity requires Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP or Mac OS 9.2; USB 2.0 connectivity requires Windows ME/XP/2000 or Mac OS X 10.2.
The Pushbutton Backup External Hard Drive line from Seagate offers storage solutions with both USB 2.0 and FireWire 400/USB 2.0 connectivity. Featuring an 8-MB cache, the USB 2.0 model is available is capacities of 250, 300, 400, and 500 GB. The FireWire/USB 2.0 option is available in capacities of 200, 300, 400, 500, and 750 GB and features a 16-MB cache. The hard drives, which can stand upright or be stacked horizontally, feature a drive speed of 7200 RPM. BounceBack Express software from CMS allows data to be backed-up with the push of a button. Compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000 Pro/XP and Mac OS 9.2.2 and OS X.
Simple Tech’s SimpleDrive External is available with USB 2.0 or USB 2.0/FireWire 400 connectivity. SimpleDrive offers storage capacities of 160, 250, 400, 500, and 750 GB with a drive speed of 7200 RPM. Able to stand upright or be stacked horizontally, the fanless device is plug-and-play, hot swappable, and features "one-click" backup with StorageSync software for Windows users. Compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP and Mac OS 9 or later.
The CrossFire Desktop Drive from SmartDisk is available with USB 2.0 or FireWire 400 connectivity. Both models are available in storage capacities of 160 and 250 GB with a drive speed of 7200 RPM. The hard drive comes with BounceBack Express backup software from CMS and is compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP and Mac OS X 10.1 or higher. Price: $150 to $180.
From Western Digital comes the My Book line of external hard drives which includes My Book Premium Edition ES and My Book Premium Edition. The former edition offers USB and eSATA connectivity and is available in 320- and 500-GB capacities, while the latter offers USB and FireWire 400 (2 ports) connectivity and is available capacities of 160, 250, 320, 400, and 500 GB. The eSATA interface offers a transfer rate of 3 Gbps.
Both plug-and-play models feature a 7200-RPM drive speed and a capacity gauge which shows the available amount of storage on the device (with USB connection only); both are able to stand upright or be stacked horizontally. The drives turn on and off with the connected computer and also have a "safe shutdown" feature to prevent the drive from powering down until all data has been written. The hard drives are bundled with EMC Retrospect Express backup software. My Book Premium Edition ES is compatible with Windows 2000/XP and Mac OS X 10.3 and later; My Book Premium Edition is compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/XP/2000 and Mac OS X 10.2.8 and later. Price for My Book Premium: $180 to $310.
Wiebe Tech’s ToughTech XE, part of its ToughTech line of external hard drives, offers quadruple interface compatibility with eSATA, FireWire 800 (two ports), FireWire 400, and USB 2.0 connectivity. The eSATA interface offers a transfer rate of 3 Gbps. The drive offers storage capacities of 250 GB, with an 8-MB cache, and 500 and 750 GB, with 16-MB caches. Offering a high-performance drive speed of 7200 RPM, the fanless drives are plug-and-play and allow for the daisy-chaining of additional FireWire devices. Compatible with Windows 2000/XP and Mac OS X. Price: $120 to $785.