laptop with 2 hard drives?

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Timothy Daniels, Sep 14, 2004.

  1. $70. FWIW, it's a single computer license, so the "send it back when
    you're done" thing isn't strictly legal.
    You could have a 3600RPM drive with a SATA interface, and the FD
    bearings on higher (rotational) speed drives make them pretty
    low-power. SATA gets you higher-speed interfaces (which laptops can't
    currently take advantage of), ease of cabling (which isn't a laptop
    problem), and (eventually) hot-swap capabilities (which already exists
    in laptops with removable bay drives).

    SATA laptop drives are going to be a chicken/egg thing, as no laptop
    mfr is going to pay lots extra for the drives, and the drives aren't
    going to be lowcost till everyone uses them.
    William P.N. Smith, Sep 16, 2004
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  2. Timothy Daniels

    Sparky Guest

    Sparky, Sep 17, 2004
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  3. Thanks for the links. Yes, Dell appears to have the equivalent of the
    IMB Ultrabay. I didn't try Google because I didn't know what terms
    to search with - "ultrabay equivalent" just didn't seem to the right terms.
    I'll go check out Sony, now, since I can get 40% discounts on Sony

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 17, 2004
  4. Timothy Daniels

    Ben Myers Guest

    Since the push to SATA is for speed, speed and more speed, a 3600 rpm SATA could
    be designed and built. But it would seem to be an oxymoron. No sense having a
    fast bus to transfer data from drive to memory when the drive itself can't feed
    data at anywhere near bus speeds. Of course, with a high enough track density,
    the transfer rate of even a 3600 rpm drive could be improved... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Sep 17, 2004
  5. Ghost 9 costs $70, but since I already have Drive Image 7, any cost for
    cloning software is excessive. It's good to know, though, that there are
    several approaches to meet the need.

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 17, 2004
  6. Timothy Daniels

    Ben Myers Guest

    I encourage you to check on eBay. There are literally hundreds of various
    USB-IDE kits up for auction, many for reasonable prices. Also USB cases to hold
    notebook drives, in the event that one wants to keep a drive somewhat
    permanently in a USB case... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Sep 17, 2004
  7. I feel another epic search coming on.... :) Just selecting which
    removable caddy to use for my desktop took months!

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 17, 2004
  8. I'm a bit confused as to what you want. If your laptop drive fails,
    do you want to be able to boot off the spare, replace the main drive
    and copy your image back, or what? All of these options and more have
    been suggested, but you don't seem to like any of them...
    William P.N. Smith, Sep 18, 2004

  9. Ideally, I'd like to boot up from a 2nd internal HD, just as I can
    do now with my desktop. Absent a 2nd internal HD, I'd like to
    swap HDs using a spare that I can easily reach. To keep cloning
    an easy and fast process and to not slow down the system if it's
    running off a clone, I'd prefer a straight IDE transfer without
    going through a USB or FireWire conversion. I do NOT want to
    have to re-copy a system from an archive HD floating about in an
    external enclosure with wires trailing out of it that run to an adapter.
    I do NOT want to have to use the booted system with an external
    HD connected by wires, etc. In other words, I'd like to be able
    travel light and clean, and if a HD should fail, do a swap and
    maintain the ease of demo-ing software that communicates between
    apps running on two different laptops without the confusion and
    delay of untangling and laying out wires and external peripherals,
    all the while maintaining a client or a job interview rap.

    As I see it, the closest I might be able to get is to have an
    Ultrabay-like device for making clones, and accept having to
    open the laptop in the field to swap HDs in the event of a failure.
    BTW, how hard is swapping laptop HDs in the field?

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 18, 2004
  10. Timothy Daniels

    Eugene Guest

    I've swapped the drives in mine a few times. I have a Dell Latitude C400
    and its drive slides out the side after removal of a single screw. Most
    business line laptops are built to have the drive swapped easily as
    corporations will standardize on a model so user calls helpdesk with a
    broken laptop, they bring the spare, swap the drives and hand it back to
    the user. I picked up a spare tray from a parted out laptop for $7 and put
    a 60G drive in it and pulled out the 20g and slid in the 60g. If i were
    ever to need to go back to the original drive (say I had to send it in for
    warranty service) I could just swap the drives back. The original drive I
    popped back in a used the cd's that came with the laptop and loaded a clean
    blank install of windows. The 60G I run normally boots Linux and has all
    my files. I kept the old drive with windows in case I would ever be
    somewhere and need to boot a windows system for whatever reason.
    Eugene, Sep 18, 2004
  11. Timothy Daniels

    Ben Myers Guest

    You've laid out some stringent requirements which may be difficult to meet given
    current and near-future notebook technology. The best you can do is either an
    UltraBay device or a USB2-IDE converter kit, the latter consisting of a small
    drive enclosure and the necessary cables and adapters to attach the drive to a
    USB 2.0 port, which I hope your notebook computer has. USB 2.0 will sustain
    disk transfer rates comparable to those of a drive inside the notebook. USB 1.1
    and earlier definitely will not. You can use the USB2-IDE converter kit to
    clone the drive. If you need to boot the system from the clone accessed thru a
    USB port, your notebook must also be capable of booting from the USB drive.

    Swapping of drives in the field is not difficult at all, provided you carry the
    right tools. Most notebook computer drives can be accessed with a small Philips
    head screwdriver. Examine yours to see what tools you need. Swapping drives is
    quicker and easier if you have an extra drive caddy for the second drive.
    Otherwise you have to remove the drive/caddy from the system, remove the drive
    from the caddy (usually 4 screws), put the replacement drive in the caddy, and
    put the replacement drive/caddy back inside the notebook.

    Firewire is an acceptable alternative to USB, tho not as popular on Intel
    computers as on Macs. Firewire is just as fast or faster than USB, depending on
    the devices hooked up to it. If your notebook can boot from a hard drive
    attached to its presumed firewire port, then you can do everything with Firewire
    that can be done with a notebook bootable from USB... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Sep 18, 2004
  12. Thanks for the info, Ben. For the record, I don't have a laptop now,
    but I shall be in the market for two (2) identical laptops in a few months,
    and I was investigating the HD backup availabilities. I know that there may
    be no system that meets my entire list of "druthers", but it's good to learn
    what devices come closest. Thanks, again.

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 19, 2004
  13. Timothy Daniels

    Sparky Guest

    Dead bang simple - less work than opening up a desktop (for ThinkPads -
    no experience with Dells).
    Sparky, Sep 19, 2004
  14. That's encouraging to hear - nothing simpler than a dead bang,
    I guess. :)

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 19, 2004
  15. You can boot from a Dell D-Bay hard drive. If it's an image of your
    system drive, and your system drive dies, you're back up and running
    without any swapping, though you will use the use of any other D-Bay
    (optical, floppy, etc) drives.

    10 minutes with a small Phillips screwdriver to swap the drives around
    and regain the use of your other D-by devices, FWIW.
    William P.N. Smith, Sep 20, 2004

  16. ` It's nice to know that a Dell laptop affords two quick
    recovery options. Thanks for the info.

    Timothy Daniels, Sep 20, 2004
  17. Timothy Daniels

    Eugene Guest

    Don't have to map a drive, you can simply browse to \\servername\sharename,
    mapped drives are unly for backward compatibility and won't exist it you
    try to copy data as an automated task.
    Copying data over a network is fine, but this instance he wants to have a
    copy of the installed programs on both machines.
    Eugene, Sep 21, 2004
  18. Timothy Daniels

    Dick Silk Guest

    I don't suppose anyone here has simply *networked* a laptop together with a
    By sharing a folder (on a drive of ANY size) on the desktop (say, 70 gig?)
    you can simply map a network drive on the laptop to that folder, and call it
    "E:" (as your CD-type device will certainly be D: already).

    From here, you can swap data at 10/100/1Gig speeds across the network.
    I use a wireless card in my laptop. No connection cables on this end
    whatsoever (duh).

    R.C. Silk -- The Computer Tutor
    *Help for Humans in Need* (for live chat)

    --A pessimist is never disappointed.
    Dick Silk, Sep 21, 2004
  19. Timothy Daniels

    Ben Myers Guest

    Agreed, but the problem as originally stated by the OP was to "clone" a hard
    drive. Unless one uses the version of Ghost which supports networked cloning of
    drives, networking two computers seems to complicate matters. Much easier to
    use external USB 2.0 gear attached to the notebook... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Sep 21, 2004
  20. Timothy Daniels

    Sparky Guest

    HUH? This has come up many times. I'm sure many posters here network a
    laptop with their desktop - I sure do & got advice from this NG on how
    to make it work.
    Sparky, Sep 22, 2004
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