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I Need 2 External Portable HD's
Recommend some, please?

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#1 morgansacre

Posted 23 January 2013 - 11:29 AM


I need 2 external portable hard drives, but as I have never had anything to do with them, I have no idea what I am looking for or what brands are good or not....

I need one for DD, who is starting Yr11 and needs one for backing up her assignments and school work.

500GB would be plenty big enough
She runs a Windows PC at home and at school
She needs it for PDF documents and JPEG pictures.

I need one for myself, I want to back up all my PDF, JPEG, and I want to put movies on it.

I was thinking 1TB size
I run a MAC

Can anyone help me with what is the best to buy and what to stay away from?


#2 Isolabella

Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:08 PM

WD Passport

They have 500GB ones (few different colours)


Also they have WD Passport for Mac in 1TB size


I had a 500GB for the past 2yrs and used it with my PC. We have just purchased a MAC so have 1TB for time capsule backp of Mac and another 500GB which is a copy of my PC one with added files from the Mac now

Edited by lsolaBella, 23 January 2013 - 01:13 PM.

#3 erypmaV

Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:14 PM

Western Digital and Seagate are both good.
You should be able to get 1TB for ~$120

That's an awfully large amount for school though. You'd be better off with a 16-32GB memory stick. Much hardier and easier to transport. I've got a Corsair Flash Voyager that is pretty indestructible. It's rubber cased so you can drop it, bounce it around in a school bag etc without any problems.

My portable drives wouldn't take that kind of day to day punishment.

Edited by erypmaV, 23 January 2013 - 01:15 PM.

#4 ~chiquita~

Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:20 PM

Another vote for Seagate.

That's an awfully large amount for school  though. You'd be better off with a 16-32GB memory stick. Much hardier  and easier to transport. I've got a Corsair Flash Voyager that is pretty indestructible. It's rubber cased so you can drop it, bounce it around in a school bag etc without any problems.

I agree with this.

#5 morgansacre

Posted 23 January 2013 - 02:44 PM

Her IT teacher has asked all the kids to have a portable HD at home to back up their work. she will be using a flash drive while at school.

the 500 GB one was the smallest one I found on d*ck Smiths web site, but I got so confused about which brand I came in here to ask.


#6 qak

Posted 23 January 2013 - 02:50 PM

Yes WD and Seagate are well known & generally reliable brands.
Having said that - my WD crashed irrecoverably sad.gif

I am looking at online backups if anyone can recommend those? I have been told of Carbonite & Dropbox ...

(I thought apple had their own online backups too)

#7 Fenrir

Posted 23 January 2013 - 02:52 PM

I got a WD 1Tb external hard drive when I started my degree. With all the electronic notes, assignments(both rough and finished copies) and various other electronic papers I still have over 850Gb left.

I've started moving everything off my laptop to my hard drive as well.

#8 morgansacre

Posted 23 January 2013 - 04:56 PM

Thank you for your help.

I have just bought DD a Seagate 500GB Expansion HD, and myself a Seagate 3TB Expansion HD.(I can fit 750 x 2hr movies on this....so I might have to get another later). I got them from JBhifi they seemed cheaper than other stores I tried.

Thanks again

#9 Coffeegirl

Posted 23 January 2013 - 05:55 PM

I see that you've already bought one, but we bought this Seagate after reading some good reviews as it is made to easily transfer between Mac and PC.


Some of the others were a but clumsy with formatting.

#10 FeralZombieMum

Posted 23 January 2013 - 06:28 PM

QUOTE (erypmaV @ 23/01/2013, 02:14 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It's rubber cased so you can drop it, bounce it around in a school bag etc without any problems.

My portable drives wouldn't take that kind of day to day punishment.

My DD has never taken her portable HD to school - it remains on her desk at home and the only time she's used it (apart from doing regular backups) is when she got her laptop back at the start of last year and the school tech department had reformatted it and returned it back to her with just the original programs, so my DD had to put all her data back onto it.

She only needs a 4GB USB stick at school, which she uses to transfer files, and I don't see it as a reliable method for backing up. (they can be easily lost and she's had a couple die on her. wink.gif )

morgansacre, I'd actually go for 2 backups - keep one at home for nightly backups, and then have another one that is for weekly backups, but store this at another location. This is what we'll be encouraging our DD to do - so if our house happens to burn down, she'll still have a back up elsewhere for those vital Year 11 and Year 12 assignments and class notes.

We went for something like this
The initial back up took some time, but now it only backs up changes since the last back, so is quick to use.

Make sure she backs it up on a regular basis and I'd even suggest she email the most vital work (eg a major assignment) to herself so she has a copy of the file as another "back up" - she should use 2 emails - 1 to send, and the other to receive. (eg email from the home email and send to her school email, or vice versa).

I tend to be a bit over prepared when it comes to school and backups - I know of a few stories of work being lost - the worst one was when a student threw in the towel at the very end of his IT degree because he'd never used the PCs at Uni (so no backup there), and his home PC (that contained ALL his work) died just before his major project was due (2 semesters worth of work!). He didn't even bother to sit his final exams for his other subjects!  (You'd think an IT student would be prepared with backups. wink.gif )

#11 mypigeonpair01

Posted 23 January 2013 - 07:01 PM

DH suggested to a friend of mine the SG are crap and he will only use WD. He has had SG at work and they've been having issues with them. My mate wanted to get a SG and DH yelled out "tell her not to waste her money".
He's the techie so I'll trust his opinion.

#12 FeralZombieMum

Posted 23 January 2013 - 07:03 PM

QUOTE (qak @ 23/01/2013, 03:50 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I am looking at online backups if anyone can recommend those? I have been told of Carbonite & Dropbox ...

Google Docs and Microsoft SkyDrive.

#13 Nerak253

Posted 23 January 2013 - 11:14 PM

I have a 1tb Western Digital that just stopped working one day. Completely unusable. So I wouldn't recommend them!

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