In this age of digital data proliferation, digital storage is almost always in short supply. To accommodate this thirst for digital storage space, many of us resort to buying multiple external hard disk drives (HDDs) each with its own USB or similar connection hardware, and each with its own power adapter. In addition, as we upgrade computers over the years, many of us are left with a trail of old laptop and desktop computers that are too slow to deal with today's fast moving digital pace but still have usable hard drives inside if only they were more accessible. To address these problems, electronics manufacturers have come up with the hard drive docking station that effectively turns all your spare hard drives and solid state drives (SSDs) into hot-swappable storage units not unlike the old magnetic tape cassettes of yesteryear. Hard drive docking stations come in several flavours from those that handle a single HDD or SSD to other more professional HDD docks that can handle an array of drives. Since here at DeskTopVibes.com we are focused on consumer computing hardware, we favour the 2-bay or dual hard drive docking station for its balance between technical flexibility and yet still reasonable price. To find the best dual HDD docking station, one needs to know first what technical specifications to look for before then choosing a reputable manufacturer.
In today's world of exponential data growth, digital storage space always seems to be in short supply. This is most often true in the home where technical resources are usually more limited. Add to that the rise in prevalence of the Solid State Drive (SSD), a more expensive technology than the traditional Hard Disk Drive (HDD) meaning smaller storage drives for the same price, and the amount of free digital storage space available to the home user is at constant risk of being overwhelmed.
The PlayStation 4 (PS4) games console comes installed with an integrated 2.5-inch hard drive on which the system software, the games and the game data are all stored. The size of the hard drive included with the PS4 varies between different PlayStation 4 models, with the basic PS4 having either a 500GB or a 1TB hard drive, while the PS4 pro comes with a 1TB hard drive as standard. Avid gamers often find that they fall short of hard drive space as they accumulate games over time often necessitating a PS4 storage space upgrade. Other more pro-level gamers find that they would like to upgrade the PS4 hard drive to one with superior read and write speeds in order to improve the game load times as well as the start up time of the gaming console itself. The included hard drive in the PS4 is not unlike the hard drives found on many laptop computers and, although it is housed within the body of the game console, it is not difficult to access, making it relatively easy to replace.
At WWDC last month, Apple unveiled it’s new MobileMe Service. Adding on to and taking over the previous “dot mac”, MobileMe is an even more well rounded solution. Along with updated name, Apple has added a number of new “Push” services. Push email, contacts, and calendar to be specific.
Along with MobileMe comes Apple’s move to cloud computing. This will be nothing new to those familiar with Exchange, but does simplify things a bit. So how does it work? Imagine you are at the computer and add a friend to your list of contacts. A day later you have yet to sync your iPhone, but you are away from the office and need to give that friend a call. With MobileMe, gone is the inconvenience that would normally require a drive back to the house or office to get that number. As soon as you add that contact’s information to Address Book on your Mac, it is instantly sent up to the “cloud”, then resent back down to your Mac, PC, and or iPhone / iPod touch.
The overall transition from a powerful desktop to a slim portable machine has been very smooth to date. I enjoy portability much more than the added power of the desktop machine, the MacBook Pro is one tool I don’t think I could go without now having used it for a few weeks.
However, there has been one downside to the transition which I expect to see eliminated over the course of the next 24 months – data storage. It’s difficult when you have over 500GB of live data but just a 160GB internal hard-drive. This will start to improve as manufacturers pump out higher density drives, Western Digital already have a 320GB drive on the market. I don’t think it’ll be too far away until we see those as official Apple BTO options for the MacBook Pro.
I’m very interested in the new WD Scorpio 320GB 5400-RPM HDDs. Installing a 320GB drive into the MacBook Pro would mean less data to keep on external drives, in turn leaving me with less headaches. It’s no fun receiving a warning message like shown above. Thank goodness for my 250GB LaCie Porsche external drive, which is now home to my extensive catalog of digital images in Lightroom (review coming very soon for those who have asked).