Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer? - Page 2

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Re: Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer?

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Well, it's hard to say really, without testing your particular laptop.  
Some people have commented on NewEgg that they were unable to get some
enclosures working even on desktop machines, which presumably have
appropriate juice to their USB connectors.  It probably depends just
as much on the hard drive as the enclosure.

Some of these enclosures even require two USB connectors, or one USB
connector and one PS/2 connector for power.  I haven't been able to
find a 2.5" enclosure on NewEgg that explicitly states that it will
accept an external power source.  All 3.5" enclosures will require an
external power supply, so you're safe if you go that route, although
you'll be facing a larger/heavier enclosure.  

Really, though, a power supply for a USB hub will be no bigger than
one for a hard drive.

Re: Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer?

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The one I got from zipzoomfly can accept external power.

Re: Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer?

wbw wrote:

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I have refrained so far to intervene but I feel that Firewire should
always be kept in mind in such cases. I have never attempted NOT to use
an external power supply: once you accept the fact you need one,
everything becomes simple. I personally use an Avermedia Firewire
enclosure to my complete satisfaction, essentially for back up purposes.

As far as I am concerned, I prefer to have a small power brick (the type
that has recessing prongs sold by Radio Shack) than those clumsy
arrangements with two cables you never know an unknown machine will be
able to accomodate. So USB or Firewire, get the small power supply for a
few dollars and get back to work.

John Doue

Re: Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer?

On Sat, 19 Mar 2005 23:29:27 GMT, "Dorothy Bradbury"
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Just curious: which manufacturers are doing this? Are you referring to
what IBM calls "HDD Shock Absorber" (available on some Thinkpads)?

Thanks, Dominique

Re: Laptop hard drive reliability -- the bigger the poorer?

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There are 2 approaches to shock absorbing, and can be combined:
o Drive sits in a shock-absorber
---- Toughbook -- new use Poron, older use Sorbothane gel
-------- I think Poron gives same cushioning from less thickness
---- Dell -- old Dells had the drive in a gel bag, now I think just some
---- IBM -- some IBMs use a thin shock absorbing membrane (Poron I guess)
o Drive detects G acceleration & parks heads
---- IBM developed this to stop heads smacking into platters
---- basically it gouges the platter as it spins like a bouncing bomb

I suspect the IBM Thinkpads use both the G-detect & membrane.

Remember a drive has 2 shock limits, and a vibration limit:
o Operating shock is *much* lower than non-operating shock
---- solution is a) sway space & cushioning -- poor in a laptop
---- alternatively b) detect the G & park the heads -- ideal in a laptop
o Vibration limit which is very low for operating shock
---- solution is a visco-elastic cushioning material
---- basically a) absorbs 80-97% of the energy, b) slow rebound so doesn't
---- additionally c) be as thin as possible -- re laptop packaging

Laptop packaging is really quite ugly:
o PCBs can withstand 1,000G for short-duration -- risk is heatinks = copper =
o Casing needs to be unbelievably stiff -- solution is mag-alloy or carbon-fibre
o Hard-drives are the risk factor -- laptop can be replaced/insured, HD can't

The Toughbooks sound a good idea - but are very expensive:
o It is not expensive to shock mount just the HD -- and insure the rest
---- in terms of TCO it is actually far more economic than a Toughbook
o Toughbooks are about usability in such environments
---- not just shock, but water - and ability to keep operating

All laptop makers could introduce a 3mm pad around the HD:
o E-A-R ConFor foam -- downside is hardness at low temps, less of a risk for
o Sorbothane gel -- proven on the early P1 & P2 Toughbooks
o Poron material -- proven to give benefit in less than 3mm & used in medicine

Poron is well proven in the medical area, as is ConFor foam.

The simplest would be to stick a 2.5" drive in an external case and fit some
pads of Sorbothane. That drive is then both portable, external (offline +
and also offers a degree of ruggedness to protect what matters - the data.
Even simpler is to backup to a remote server somewhere, for some that can be too
difficult re bandwidth & data-set size, but for others it's a useful option.
Many ISPs
give free web/ftp-space, WinZIP supports AES encryption etc.
Dorothy Bradbury

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