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External Drive usage
Thread poster: Vladimir Dubisskiy

Vladimir Dubisskiy  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:37
English to Russian
+ ...
Jan 9, 2008

Hi, all,
Got a 400 GB external hD from WD (Elements). I tried to ask questions with their Support but got no answers at all.

- should I better turn off / disconnect the external drive prior to turning off my PC, or it is OK for it to be connected?

- can I use a multiple USB portal to hook up this external drive on one end and both computers on the other end to use it by both - my laptop (with Vista) and desktop (with XP)?

- if the drive is connected to my pc when it's active - does it slow the overall performance?

Thank you in advance,
V.

[Edited at 2008-01-09 21:05]


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Claudia Alvis  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 15:37
Partial member
Spanish
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Some answers Jan 9, 2008

- should I better turn off / disconnect the external drive prior to turning off my PC, or it is OK for it to be connected?

I sometimes turn off the PC with the external drive still on, and I haven't noticed any problem related to it. You might still want to turn it off when you turn your PC on, otherwise XP could try to scan it in search of errors.


- if the drive is connected to my pc when it's active - does it slow the overall performance?

No, it doesn't per se. Unless there are other programs running from the external drive, or the external drive is being scanned or linked to another program that is running.

External hard-drives do get really hot when they're left on for long periods of time, so it's always better to keep them off until you're going to use them.

Regards,

Claudia

[Edited at 2008-01-09 21:01]


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Vladimir Dubisskiy  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:37
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thank you and one more Jan 9, 2008

One more thing:

This External HD has a rurn on / off button on the back.

Can I use it and keep it connected via USB to my PC, or it is better every time to use Safely Remove Hardware option - close - and then use the turn-off button on the External HD?

Thank you,
V.


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Ramon Somoza  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:37
Member (2002)
Dutch to Spanish
+ ...
Better remove it safely first Jan 9, 2008

You see, the problem is not actually the external hard drive but Windows - sometimes Windows has not finished writing to the drive, so a file might get corrupted if you simply turn it off.

When you remove a USB device safely, Windows first finishes all read/write operations, then disables access to the drive. So it is always better to remove it safely first, and then switch it off.


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Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 22:37
English to Swedish
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Caveats about sharing Jan 10, 2008

Vladimir Dubisskiy wrote:

Hi, all,
Got a 400 GB external hD from WD (Elements). I tried to ask questions with their Support but got no answers at all.

- can I use a multiple USB portal to hook up this external drive on one end and both computers on the other end to use it by both - my laptop (with Vista) and desktop (with XP)?


You mean an USB switch?!
Sure, it sounds feasible, but I'm not sure you can have all devices active at the same time (both computers reading/writing to the HD simultaneously).
Check this:
http://www.usbswitch.com/

I'd be careful to check the specs:
1. the switch can slow down transfer speeds
2. if the HD takes power over the USB (as opposed to having it's own power source), the switch has to be powered.

For HD sharing, I'd much rather get a HD with ethernet port and share it over a LAN router instead.

/Jan


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Vladimir Dubisskiy  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:37
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Jan: thanks yes it's a switch Jan 10, 2008

And i will definitely check your link.
My HD has its power source.

Thank you,
V.
J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:
You mean an USB switch?!
Sure, it sounds feasible,...
For HD sharing, I'd much rather get a HD with ethernet port and share it over a LAN router instead.

/Jan


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