Product Type: other hard disk drives
Newest Review: ... resilient. I decided to pull the HDD out the computer and plug it into my other desktop. After a little bit of time i had two opened... more
Maxtor Internal Hard Drive 20gig 5,400 rpm
Member Name: TUVOK
Maxtor Internal Hard Drive 20gig 5,400 rpm
Date: 02/05/02, updated on 02/05/02 (2117 review reads)
Advantages: Quality, Price,Quiet.
I am having to write this for the second time as I spent so long doing it the first time that It timed me out and I lost ALL my info!! How annoying is that?! I have written before in MS Word first, and copied them over but it puts a ? for every single apostrophe and I found it tedious having to trawl through and correct them-but not half as annoying as having to so the WHOLE opinion again-perhaps I will have to write an opinion on that as well!
Ok well I decided that the 6.4gb hard drive in my 3-year-old Compaq Presario was too small for my current needs, and had been for a while in fact. When I bought my PC 6.4gb was huge; the biggest size back then was around 10-12GB. Now it's closer to 160gb! Quite a change.
I did plenty of research online before deciding what to buy-I recommend anyone to so this before buying ANYTHING, theres so much good information out there which can be found on most good search engines, and of course Dooyoo! My existing drive was a Quantum "Bigfoot" 6.4gb Drive with a 5.25-inch width (same as a standard size CD drive)-very unusual for a machine less than 3 years old, and positively ancient. The newer drives are all 3.5 inches width so I knew I would need some mounting brackets to connect the drive to my 5.25 inch drive bay inside the PC- My PC has a tiny mini tower and I had already used the spare drive bay to install a CD rewriter, so I would need to replace the existing hard drive with the new one.
I decided to check out Quantum's web pages first to see what they offered-I found that they no longer make internal PC drives and that Maxtor now look after tech support for Quantum hard drives, so I had a look there. I was impressed- Masses of technical info on loads of drives including my own, good knowledge base, downloadable software, UK tech support number etc-excellent.
My old drive was a 5400RPM spin speed unit with an "ATA 33" interface and seek time of 12ms. Basicall
y the faster the RPM speed the faster the disk will run and overall data access/transfer will be faster (most disks are either 5400 or 7200rpm speed)-Interfaces on modern disks are ATA100 and ATA 133 which also contrubute to faster transfer than the older ATA33 and ATA66 interfaces-as long as your PC supports them-mine does not (ATA33). The ATA 100 and ATA 133 drives will however work with PC's whose intefaces are older, such as mine-ATA33.
The seek time is the time it takes to find the info, 12ms(milliseconds) is average, some drives do 5ms, but most are between 6-12 ms. As My PC is "older" I didnt need a top spec drive, just something which would do the job, was good value and good quality. I decided that a 20GB drive would be perfectly adequate for my needs, as I will not be doing any Digital video editing or storing films on my PC, which take up huge amounts of space. Its the sum of the parts that matter rather than the individual parts themselves! My PC wouldnt take advantage of the faster Interfaces and greater storage spaces such as 40GB and up. By the time I got round to using that I would be getting another PC and anyway I could always get a 200Gb in few years if I really needed! And I had managed with 6GB for 3 years!
I did check out reviews, prices and specs of other makes and manufacturers, such as IBM, Seagate and Western Digital but found that Maxtor came out top in each category. I havent seen a bad review of Maxtor drives anywhere-unlike some of the others.
The other consideration I had was that my PC uses WIN98 (1st edition) and the Compaq technobods had advised that the system BIOS, (unable to be upgraded after checking) may not recognise a disk bigger than 10GB, so I may need to format it with FDISK, or the software that comes with the drive itself. FDISK can be found on a WIN98 Start-up Floppy disk, which you are recommended to create in case you are unable to get into Windows the normal way.
I decided on the Maxtor and downloaded the free "Maxblast" software in case of any problems with using FDISK (although this wasnt needed, see below). The Maxblast software looked quite long winded to use so I would recommend using FDISK if you can-its easy enough.
It was then a case of where to buy from and how much it would cost. You can buy hard drives either as "retail" packs which include a cable, software and mounting brackets for fixing, or as a "bare" drive, which is just the drive on its own. I notice that many of the pictures show the drives as actually bare-ie with no cover on-dont be peturbed by this! Its just for illustration and the actual drive is the same as those in the retail packs- covered. As I already had a cable and the software, it was just a case of finding some mounting brackets which I managed to pick up at my Local Maplin store for £4 which fit all configurations judging by the number of screw holes in them!
The cheapest I had seen the drive was £57.99 at PC world and Jungle. As I wanted one there and then I rang PC world to ask how much it was instore- the same! I went over and found the bare drives in brown cardboard boxes, along with other things such as sound cards and CD drives, under the "component centre" sign. There was a good range of drives, including a 40GB for only £10 more than mine, and a 7200RPM version of mine again for £10 more, but as already discussed I wanted the cheapest, best value drive I could get and I wasnt bothered about the faster speeds or extra space as I knew the 5400, 20GB would be perfect for my needs.
I also noticed that the retail packs were as much as £50 more than their bare drive counterparts-a lot extra to pay just for software which is free on the web, a cable and fixing brackets.
All I had to do to fit the drive was to enable the jumper on the back of the drive to the same setting as my old hard drive-the in
fo on this is on the drive itself of where to put the jumpers- I used "cable select" as my old drive was set to this also- which lets the cable tell the system how to recognise the drive, the other settings are master or slave. Be sure to check your system first to see what you need to set it as.
I make sure I was grounded by wearing an anti-static wrist strap to stop any static, attached the brackets to the drive and then the drive to the Drive bay- 4 screws either side and its done-although I did breath a sigh of relief when I realised that the brackets which I had been assured to fit, DID actually fit! Usually theres something that crops up when I do this sort of thing, as Compaq, although good, sometimes make their systems awkward to upgrade.
Then it was just a case of plugging the power cable and EIDE cable into the new drive, and away we go! I was pleasantly surprised that my system recognised the drive immediately so that no partitioning was needed (I think 32Gb is the max without needing to partition for WIN98), all I needed to do was put the Windows 98 floppy in, wait a second for it to start, type FDISK, then choose option 1, then option 1 again, and format the drive, which was recognised at 19548 Mb, only 52 Mb short of the 20GB, I think this is due to the way in which GB are measure, there's a slight difference).
All I then needed to do was reload the software from the Compaq "quick restore" CD I had, which also has Win98 on (it doesnt tell you on the sleeve though-I had to check that WIN98 was on there, as The Dixons coverplan people said it wasnt!!! But Compaq confirmed that it was indeed on-thank goodness for that).
I needed to unplug my CD rewriter before this would work as the CD itself wouldnt find my original Compaq CD drive other-wise, but this was simple enough, and everything was loaded on to my new drive after which I could plug the CD Rewriter back in and load up its softwar
In use the drive is extremely quiet-the marketing is right for once-I can barely hear anything even with the PC hood off-silence! My old drive wasnt extremely noisy but did "creak" a bit. Its almost like having double-glazing put in your PC! Excellent. Data speed and transfer is good, just as fast if not faster than my older drive. Its not the fastest or biggest drive I could have got, but is perfectly suited to my system. I would highly recommend this drive to anyone with an "older" system like mine who needs a top quality drive at a great price.
More reviews in the field of Hard Disk Drive
- Room Enough 4 2
- IS it REALLY worth of your ££??
- My C: Drive is now a SEAGATE: Drive
- Big and fast, just how I like it...
- Only 3.5 inches Hard............(DRIVE)
- Stuck in the past
- mine failed too- but other than that it was a fantastic drive and very fast
- Whisper Quiet
- An awesome PS3 upgrade but don't believe the Sony backup process
- An absolute necessity if you want to experience the gems that Xbox Live Arcade h ...
- HP Enterprise 72 GB 2.5" SAS-2
- Origin Storage 900 GB 2.5" SAS
- Origin Storage 300 GB 2.5" SAS
- Origin Storage 500 GB 2.5" SAS
- Origin Storage 500 GB 3.5" SAS
- Intel SSD 520 Series 2,5 180 GB
- Intel SSD 520 Series 2,5 120 GB
- Crucial SSD M500 480GB 2,5 SATA
- Crucial SSD M500 240GB 2,5 SATA
- Intel SSD 520 Series 2,5 240 GB