An external hard drive is a hard drive that can be connected directly to a computer via an interface such as USB, FireWire, eSATA, Thunderbolt, or as a removable disk drive.
There are also external hard drives that, with a LAN cable or wireless Wi-Fi to connect to a network, see Network Direct Attached Storage (NAS).
The stored data or the entire data memory of a hard disk can be determined through software or hardware-based hard disk encryption wholly or partially encrypted.
It is right for internal and external hard drives but is especially vital for external hard drives to prevent loss of unauthorized data access.
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What are the features of eSATA?
External hard drives can differentiate according to different criteria. The most important distinguishing features are:
- used technique: SSD or HDD,
- 2.5- or 3.5-inch hard drives,
- applied interface technology (USB, Firewire, eSATA, Thunderbolt, etc.),
- external power supply necessary,
- Storage capacity.
What are the sizes of [eSATA]?
Depending on the diameter of the rotating magnetic disks used, whether 2.5 or 3.5 inches, the external hard drives have a specific size.
- 3.5-inch hard drives are larger and heavier, but have higher read and write speeds. Also, larger hard drives with higher storage capacity are available.
- 2.5-inch hard drives can often supply via the data interface with the required electrical energy for operation.
- 3.5-inch hard drives usually require an additional external power supply.
- Some external hard drives provide particularly resistant housings that protect against moisture, magnetic fields, or external forces.
- Less standard is the 1.8-inch format, which is still partly used today for external SSDs that work with electronic memory devices instead of rotating magnetic disks. USB sticks have replaced the 1.0-inch form.
- There are also external hard drive enclosures with two or four hard drives. These can work for a higher data transfer rate in the RAID-0 network or greater data security in the RAID-1 system.
What are the connection types of eSATA?
- Very often, USB interfaces used to connect external hard drives. Depending on the USB version (2.0, 3.0, 3.1, or 3.2), achieve specific data transfer rates.
- With USB 3.0, the achievable data rate is in the range of approximately 450 megabytes per second. Other standard interfaces are Firewire and Thunderbolt.
- All three interfaces offer the possibility of supplying connected devices with electrical energy at the same time.
- Another interface for external hard drives is eSATA. With eSATA, an external hard drive works just as fast as an internal SATA- connected hard drive.
- In principle, there are also external hard disk solutions that connect to a computer via LAN or WLAN.
What are the power supplies for [eSATA]?
- 3.5 inch IDE / PATA hard drives usually require 5 and 12 V operating voltage. Initially, the external power supplies used for the amount made these two voltages available.
- To connect to the hard drive, however, each manufacturer put on their plugs. Usually, they use mini-DIN connections with four, five, or six pins.
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