By Melissa J. Perenson Are too many MP3s and digital photographs crowding your PC's hard disk? Want to back up copious amounts of data onto a no-hassle removable device? External storage could solve your problems. In its first foray into the hard disk drive category, Iomega steps in with one portable and one desktop entry.
I found a lot to like about the HDD 30GB USB 2.0 Portable Hard Drive. The sleek $260 shipping unit (also available in a 20GB size for $200), with easy plug-and-play installation, measures about 5.75 inches long--including the 1.5-inch-long USB 2.0 adapter module. The design provides added flexibility, since you can swap out this module for an optional IEEE 1394 module. In my informal tests using the USB 2.0 version, the drive took approximately 75 seconds to write 650MB of data, which is about 2 minutes faster than an external 40X CD-RW drive takes to do it.
In addition, the HDD Portable ships with both Iomega QuikSync and Iomega Backup software--which makes this external drive especially attractive, since most competing models don't ship with backup software.
I also looked at a preproduction version of the HDD 120GB USB 2.0 External Hard Drive (smaller sizes are available as well). The $350 External Hard Drive is larger and heavier than the Iomega HDD Portable, and I give it low marks for its bulky, cumbersome wires, which include a 4-inch-long inline power adapter with a five-pin power connector. Still, this drive's performance was definitely comparable to the portable Iomega's, so consider it if you don't often need to move it from your desk. From the July 2002 issue of PC World magazine