Computer Hard Drives & Storage Devices

Choosing a Storage Device
There are many computer hard drives and storage devices available to repair or upgrade your computer or laptop. Some storage devices are designed to back up your data or make it easier to share with others. Things to consider when buying a storage device are storage capacities, data transfer speeds, sharing capability, and whether it's for a home or business.

Internal and external hard drives offer many different storage capacities, as well as machine compatibility. Look for one that your computer's resources and operating system supports. Some towers even accommodate multiple hard drives, to give you expanded file and video storage, or redundancy for backups.


Types of Hard Drives
Traditional hard drives use plates and read/write heads in order to store and retrieve data. These are available in different sizes to fit into desktop towers or laptops, and they are typically easy for users to install as a DIY project. An alternative to traditional hard drives are solid-state drives. They work without using any moving parts, which makes them quieter and more stable. USB flash drives and other external drives connect to your tower or laptop, increasing the amount of storage space available. Both solid-state and traditional hard drives are typically plug-and-play devices, and you only need to connect them to the motherboard or into a socket.

Network and Backup Storage for Businesses
For businesses both large and small, with important data that needs backing up and that multiple users must access, there's Network Attached Storage (NAS). NAS makes it easy for all your employees to access the information they need, and it makes it available on different computers and other devices. For backing up data, there are hard drive arrays, which hold multiple drives and replicate files based on different RAID schemes. You also have the option of tape archiving, which offers a simple way to restore data if you lose it due to environmental factors or other causes.

Uses for Portable Hard Drives
External hard drives such as USB flash drives or larger models have a range of applications. You can password-protect many of them, preventing unauthorized users from accessing the contents. Most USB flash drives are also small and easily portable, while still holding large amounts of data. Larger external drives hold even more, with capacities ranging into the terabytes. Users can connect these directly to scanners and other equipment, allowing for fast and easy transfer of large numbers of documents. These are also optimal for creating digital copies and backups.