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#2979314 - 04/20/13 10:18 PM Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 32578
Loc: New Jersey
Hi,

Looking to get an HDD to use for archiving files. The plan is to archive stuff then pure it in the safe deposit box just in case our laptops fail or are stolen. We could just get it maybe once a year and update from other storage HDDs at home.

So this would be a seldom-used drive.

So, which are more robust? Laptop or desktop drives? I'd imagine that desktop drives are designed for greater MTBF, but this drive wouldn't be taking on lots of hours. I'd kind of imagine that the small laptop drives would be more shockproof...

Next, am I better off buying a naked drive or one in a USB integrated addembly like the WD My Passport? I ask because it appears that for whatever reason, the naked drives cost more than those sold as an external storage product. No idea why, but ive seen this many times.

So, what's the best bet? Id imagine that a few TB would work great.

Thanks!

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#2979332 - 04/20/13 10:36 PM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
Doog Offline


Registered: 10/24/11
Posts: 3233
Loc: Ohio
I had an external for about 5 years. It was a 2GB in a case w/power supply. Now I just use Carbonite for $54/year. I now have about 45GB in my files there. Way easier and it backs up daily.

I had a total Hd crash and only lost 4 hours worth of work. So I highly recommend offsite automatic back up systems to archive as well.
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#2979388 - 04/21/13 01:00 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
cutlassvillager Offline


Registered: 08/03/10
Posts: 195
Loc: Michigan
I've always had better luck buying the hard drive and enclosure separately rather than buying a pre-made kit such as the WD Passport. Most of my external drives that were originally purchased as pre-made kits have had their hard drives replaced because the original drive failed.

As far as a 2.5" vs a 3.5"...I would just go for a 3.5" since it's more bang for the buck (more capacity for cheaper).
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#2979402 - 04/21/13 01:46 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
RiceCake Offline


Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 1044
Loc: Coldtown, Canada
A desktop drive will last as long or just as long. Just by the nature of it running less, and running in an enclosure where it may run cooler, will help it live a long healthy life.

But -all- hard drives are mechanical and could fail, so its always a chance.

Plenty of servers run 3.5" drives just fine for decades.

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#2979444 - 04/21/13 06:10 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: RiceCake]
BISCUT Offline


Registered: 12/28/11
Posts: 1188
Loc: NewYorkistan
I use a laptop often and use the cloud as well as a 1.5TB USB HD. I have a lot of family photos that I need to ensure are never lost. Covers the bases this way. Not an expensive option either and the portable HD real large capacity yet SMALL in size!
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#2979445 - 04/21/13 06:12 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
rjundi Offline


Registered: 03/16/04
Posts: 5748
Loc: New England
The best solution. Buy two of the cheap branded ones that fit(liked laptop) in your storage area. And make sure to backup twice. I use cloning software for 2nd backup.

I happen to use well used drives for my backups.

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#2979453 - 04/21/13 06:29 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
Colt45ws Offline


Registered: 08/15/06
Posts: 7267
Loc: Central Washington
I use a pair of WD Green 2TB drives for backup purposes. I rotate them. Backup to #1 one week and #2 the next. I also use Truecrypt to encrypt the contents as the intention was to store one off site, but I have not actually found a good place to store them.
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#2979481 - 04/21/13 07:39 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
spk2000 Offline


Registered: 02/19/13
Posts: 267
Loc: Brownsburg, IN
Look for a SSD they have no moving parts and will not fail nearly as easily. More like a memory stick. If it is not too much you might consider backing things up on a memory stick or card. I have done this on memory card numerous times and they are easy to get up to 64gb fairly cheap. They can be found larger but then you really start to pay more when for me it just makes sense to use a few smaller ones.
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#2979494 - 04/21/13 08:01 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
JRed Offline


Registered: 06/01/09
Posts: 1633
Loc: Virginia
If I had files that were irreplaceable and precious to me (pictures, for example) I'd probably put them on optical media. You don't have to worry about DVDs or BD-Rs getting scratched if they're being kept in a safe deposit box.

You can buy Blu-Ray burners fairly cheap now. A 50-pack of 25gb BD-R disks (1250 gb) is $50-$75. A 25gb BD-R takes 15-20 minutes to write.

It'd be a shame to buy an external hard drive when you'll be using it so little.
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#2979495 - 04/21/13 08:02 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 32578
Loc: New Jersey
Solid state does not have shelf life for stored data.

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#2979691 - 04/21/13 12:07 PM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JRed]
RiceCake Offline


Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 1044
Loc: Coldtown, Canada
Originally Posted By: JRed
If I had files that were irreplaceable and precious to me (pictures, for example) I'd probably put them on optical media. You don't have to worry about DVDs or BD-Rs getting scratched if they're being kept in a safe deposit box.

You can buy Blu-Ray burners fairly cheap now. A 50-pack of 25gb BD-R disks (1250 gb) is $50-$75. A 25gb BD-R takes 15-20 minutes to write.

It'd be a shame to buy an external hard drive when you'll be using it so little.


^ This would be my iea truth be told, but the only warning I could give here is back your data up multiple times, preferably using multiple brands of disks; I did this with DVD's years ago and started to discover that certain brands I'd bought were, well, utterly garbage and after a few years the disks became largely unreadable.

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#2980176 - 04/21/13 09:06 PM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 32578
Loc: New Jersey
Optical media does have finite life.

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#2980188 - 04/21/13 09:13 PM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 32578
Loc: New Jersey
So here's the funny thing - I can buy a 3TB WD elements USB had for $127 complete. The cheapest bare 3TB drives I've seen are over $130. What gives?

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#2980239 - 04/21/13 09:56 PM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
RiceCake Offline


Registered: 09/22/12
Posts: 1044
Loc: Coldtown, Canada
Truth be told the market on stuff like that has always been a mixed bag. Here in Canada right now, OEM bare disks are about 8 bucks cheaper then an external. It varies but the difference is often not substantial.

I bought an external WD MyBook just to strip it apart and steal the drive from it...I figure why not?

The bare drive likely has a better warranty though.

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#2980363 - 04/22/13 01:51 AM Re: Robustness of laptop vs desktop HDDs [Re: JHZR2]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 12161
Loc: Silicon Valley
I'd buy a hard drive that has been on the market for a few months, and have gathered enough good reviews, regardless of desktop vs laptop.

My experience is that it is a [censored] shot and most of the problems (other than abuse or mishandling) are from design error or weakness, that will show up after it is sold for a few months in user reviews.
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