3 External Hard Drives for 3 Different External Hard Drive Needs

In today's fast-paced digital world, it is vital to have a reliable backup and storage solution for your computer. There are many portable hard drives and other external storage solutions to choose from, but the following three products are the best of the best in different categories, depending on the needs of the user:

Samsung G2 Portable: This portable hard drive is suitable for someone with a small budget. Selling for around $65, the G2 offers an attractive case in four colors: Cobalt Blue, Olive Green, Cobalt Black and Silver White. It is available in 250 - 640 GB capacities and has a three year limited warranty.

This device is plug-and-play for both Windows and Mac computers. It can be used 10 seconds after being turned on, and runs silently so you won't be kept up at night if you leave it on. It also runs fairly cool, which is a big positive in an external hard drive, particularly for those who live in hot climates.The Samsung G2 is intended for fast, easy storage (http://www.superwarehouse.com/Samsung_G2_Portable_HX-MU032DC_320_GB_External_Hard_Drive/HX-MU032DC_GB2/p/1635435) of media files and for taking them from place to place. Its small size makes it practical to sit on a desk and not get in the way.

It is also very easy on computer system resources, although one of its drawbacks for Mac or Linux users is that its included software suite is Windows only.

Buffalo Drive Station Combo4: For users who need a more robust storage solution, the DriveStation offers 1 TB of capacity for around $200. Whatever it may lack in the looks department, it more than makes up for in accessible ports and raw performance.

Included ports are e-SATA, FW400, FW800 (x2) and USB 2.0.Like many external hard drives, the Buffalo DriveStation Combo4 is pre-formatted in FAT32 which allows for across-the-board compatibility with Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. It can easily be reformatted to NTFS (through Windows, not the included software) which allows for more security and overcomes the 4GB file size limit of FAT32. This drive also has FireWire capability, which make file transfer much faster. Its large storage capacity is ideal for expansive libraries of big media files, such as movies and corporate presentations.

While the DriveStation is of reasonably small size and fits easily on top of a desk, it is intended to be a stationary backup and storage solution and not to be toted from place to place. The device has a cool operating temperature and is very quiet, which makes its permanent presence in the office that much more appealing.

Data Robotics Drobo S: For extreme storage needs, there is the Data Robotics Drobo S. This external hard drive device is unique in that it allows for five drives of different capacities to be running simultaneously, each of which can be added and removed without any downtime. As the price starts at $800, it is a substantial investment.

The Drobo S comes with a one year warranty in the United States and two years in Europe.This device is intended for businesses and creative professionals who require mass capacity and redundancy. It has the ability to protect from failure of up to two of the drives and is also intelligent enough to write data only to the healthy sectors of the disks, due to to its constant self-scanning for errors and bad sectors.

Offering USB 2.0, FW800 and eSATA ports, the Drobo S is very flexible. It supports the standard FAT32 and NTFS file formats, as well as Mac OS X HFS+ and Linux EXT 3. The operating systems supported are Windows XP, Vista and 7, as well as Windows 2003 and 2008 Server. Mac OS and Linux EXT 3 round out the list.

Weighing in at a hefty eight pounds, this device is not suitable for portability and will have to occupy a space off the desk. For those with mission-critical backup needs, this is a small price to pay for the knowledge that your back-up files are safe and secure.Before purchasing any backup solution, a user should weigh their personal or business needs against the device's capabilities, size, and cost.

Too much storage can be just as bad as not enough; there is no need to purchase a large capacity external hard drive when a small, portable device will do an adequate job for less money. Whatever your needs may be, with appropriate research you should have no problem making the right purchase.

This is a Guest Post by Russel Schneider.

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