Staples offers a large selection of internal hard drives, including hard disk drives (HDD) from Western Digital, Seagate and more. To help you determine which HDD to purchase, below is brief overview of the overall benefits of internal hard drives and some distinctive features for consideration to ensure you select the best internal hard drive for your needs.
- Increased Data Storage Capacity: The hard disk today is capable of covering a myriad of data storage needs, but the internal hard disk serves a unique function by providing storage capacity for your operating system and resident program applications. This is a unique requirement, and a function reserved to the internal hard drive. Secondly, many users also utilize a hard disk to store other data such as music, photos and videos. In any scenario you will want to ensure you have enough storage capacity not only store what you need but back it up as well. When expanding your data storage capacity, it is possible to simply add an additional internal hard disk to your existing HDD. This is most common in desktop computers with available hard disk slots available for expansion. In the case of laptops, additional hard disk slots are typically not provided, and users must replace their existing hard disk with a larger capacity laptop hard drive to increase storage capacity. Whether you need to add or replace your existing hard disk, you should consider a 3TB HDD or a 4TB HDD. A large capacity 3TB hard drive or 4TB hard drive typically offers enough capacity for your needs today and into the future.
- Highest Data Access Speeds: An internal HDD is capable of providing the highest data access speeds available, since it is connected directly to your systems data controller via a host interface. For many users, speed is a critical benefit if working with large file size or large number of smaller files. The latest generation and most popular interface today is SATA. A SATA drive is compatible with most existing systems today. A SATA hard drive is also capable of transferring data up to 6Gb/s. Some legacy systems are not compatible with a SATA drive and instead require the use of an IDE hard drive.
- Capacity: Storage capacity is a critical consideration when purchasing an internal hard drive. It is recommended that you purchase the highest capacity hard drive that you can afford to ensure you have adequate space for your needs not only today, but also in the future. Your required storage capacity should include the required space available by your operating system (OS), the total requirements of all your resident applications and any additional data you wish to store such as music, videos and photos. You should also factor in additional capacity to anticipate future needs.
- Interface: The HDD interface is the most important specification related to how fast your hard disk drive will access data. The SATA interface is the latest generation available today with SATA 3.0 being the latest version of the standard. SATA 3.0 devices are capable of transferring data up to 6 Gb/s, while SATA 2.0 devices are capable of transferring data up to 3 GB/s. SATA 3.0 devices are backwards compatible with systems that perform at SATA 2.0 standards. IDE interfaces are still available today, but less common and applicable for some legacy systems. The latest version is IDE Ultra ATA133, which is capable of supporting data transfer speeds up to 133 Mb/s.
- RPM: RPM (revolutions per minute) refers to the revolution speed at which the spindle holding the hard disk platters revolves. Though there are many factors that impact overall performance, faster RPM speeds allow for higher data throughput when reading and writing data to the drive. Most consumer drives available today operate at a range of 5500 RPM to 7200 RPM. Internal hard drives used to support network storage systems or business servers typically operate at 10000 RPM to 15000 RPM.
- Cache: The hard drive cache, sometimes referred to as disk buffer, disk cache or cache buffer, is embedded high speed memory in the disk drive that serves to buffer recent or frequently accessed data. When initiating a data request to the hard disk, the internal drive will first reference the cache to locate the data. If it is not found during this initial request, the drive will attempt to access the data on the hard disk platter. If you intend to use your internal drive in a RAID configuration or as a component of your network attached storage, cache can play an important role in performance and should be a consideration in your purchase.
The best internal hard drives on themarket today include the WD Caviar Green, Seagate Barracuda, WD Caviar Blue, WD Caviar Black, WD Scorpio Blue and Seagate Momentus. Whichever HDD you decide to purchase, you can shop with confidence knowing Staples offers a price match guarantee and offers only the best brands available.
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