The latest range of USB3 small external drives from Toshiba sees the Canvio Advance (highest specified of three) cross my desk to be given the real world test over a matter of weeks, using transfer by USB2, USB3 and this time also USB ‘C’ for good measure.
As I was testing this with Windows PC’s and I had used similar products all I did was unbox the drive and connect the supplied USB3 cable. Unlike earlier USB drives this takes the small amount of power required from the USB port so it is true ‘plug and play’. While this is stated to be 2TB and by the 1000 calculation method it is but Windows used the 1024 calculation so it only shows as 1.81TB this is normal.
With its background in hard drives, WD has come up with a personal Cloud solution.
Where do you store the ever-increasing amount of personal data? With the options available, such as local drives, network facilities, flash devices and Cloud services, the choice and spread of the data is wide and varied. You could opt for a single location or prefer to mix and match as circumstances decree.
With the appearance of a bathroom wall tile, this next product under review offers 1TB of portable storage space.
The My Passport Ultra is a portable storage device from Western Digital (WD). Available in a choice of either Black & Grey or White & Gold, there are models with a capacity of 1, 2, 3 or 4TB of storage space. I have been sent the 1TB White & Gold unit for the purpose of this review. Slightly smaller and lighter than the 3 and 4TB models, my review sample has dimensions of 110 x 81.5 x 13.
Larger memory sticks are always useful if you need to transfer large files such as videos to various destinations, if these devices have the ability to work on what are otherwise conflicting operating systems then so much the better.
It is only slightly longer than a standard USB stick at 6.5x2.3x1cm and both the end pieces are covered. It weighs only 16grams. Assuming you only lift one cover the other is held in place as the rubberised cover has two strips down the back which if required can be integrated into a belt so you never lose the stick unless that is you lose your trousers. The Lightning connector is one end and a standard USB3 (actually USB3.1) connector the other.
If you need to move data around then on a Ethernet or Wi-Fi network should be easy, if however the files are in different places this is harder, so maybe a large capacity USB stick can help, or possibly to move from a mobile device to a PC then an OTG device can help, both are covered with the below.
Inflation is a thing most of us have problems with in one way or another, as far as computer memory it means that programs and the data they use can be larger, much larger, a long time ago – yes I am old – the operating system its programs and data fitted on a floppy disc of less than 100MB here however is a USB stick that can contain up to 115GB of data.
With claims that much of its stock being 20% cheaper than elsewhere in the UL, Reichelt Electronics supplied this next product.
File sizes, over the years, have grown at a prodigious rate, even far outstripping my waist measurement. At the same time, hard disk sizes and other types of storage media devices, such as flash sticks and memory cards, have expanded to create the storage space necessary to hold the bloated software products that we cannot do with out. Talk of 20MB hard drives.
StarTech were a name new to me but as I know their PR company through the good things of a totally different item I said I would look at the product offered, initially I failed as the item offered had limited availability of the cards to use in it. Then I was offered this offering which if you have USB C on your mobile device is very useful.
It is 7x6.5x1.5cm and weighs 66grams. It has a hard wired 20cm USB C lead emerging from the back. The front of the unit has Compact Flash on the top and SD and Micro SD under it. Before you say everything is SD or Micro SD these days – and you are probably correct – there are still some top of the range cameras that have Compact Flash alongside SD to capture images and videos.
Who has heard of EU GDPR (EU General Data Protection Regulation), you may say with Brexit this does not apply to the UK, rightly or wrongly they do as they came into force in 2016 and complete implementation comes into force in 2018. This replaces a 1995 (yes the date is correct) directive.
‘In case of a data breach businesses will face fines of up to 4% of their annual global revenue or 20 million euros (whichever is greater) and must inform their national supervisory authority’. So for any business that should cure any personal constipation. Last year Kingston Technology purchased Ironkey who market encrypted USB drives and they are now fully part of Kingston Technology.
Verbatim have recently launched some larger capacity drives, while it was not possible to get these newest items in for review their PR person assured me the smaller capacity ones sent to me were identical in all but capacity.
So the two drives getting a look at are both external drives the ‘Store ‘n’ Go and the Store ‘n’ Save. I was sent a 500GB portable drive, the first problem is extracting it from the shelf pack and once your scissors have cut your way in there is still another layer of protection to remove. Having plugged the supplied USB3 lead into the drive you find four files on the drive – two each for MAC and PC.
Offering to keep your data secure from unauthorised access is a portable hard drive from iStorage,
Adding to its range of encrypted portable drives, iStorage has released the company’s diskAshur PRO product. Promising to provide the capability of an ultra-secure hardware encrypted portable hard drive, the diskAshur PRO is available with capacities of 500GB, 1TB or 2TB options. I have been checking out the 1TB model. Rectangular in shape with rounded corners, the diskAshur PRO has a weight of 237g and dimensions of 124 x 84 x 20 mm (H x W x D).
Almost all SmartPhones and other devices that accept a Micro SD Card will now support up to 64GB. Some will support 128GB or even more but 64GB is now a safe size to purchase and that can hold a lot of video or a mountain of music.
For modern SmartPhones that record high quality video you need a card that can accept a lot of video being transferred to it quickly and to do that you have a higher standard. The last thing you want is lots of dropped frames from a possibly irreplaceable video. So for those who have not seen such a device it is 25cm long without sleeve, 1.3cm wide at the USB type ‘A’ end and less than half that at the USB type ‘C’ end and the width is .5cm.
Offering to keep your data secure is a hardware device from iStorage.
Described as the “most secure hard disk drives ever made”, iStorage has launched its new ultra-secure diskAshur range of devices. The range consists of diskAshur , diskAshur SSD, diskAshur PRO , diskAshur PRO SSD and diskAshur DT models. This new range features fast USB 3.1 speeds. PIN authenticated hardware encryption incorporating iStorage’s unique Enhanced Dual Generating Encryption (EDGE™) technology.
Adding power and extra storage to your LAN is the task undertaken by the Buffalo TeraStation.
Classified by Buffalo as “an affordable larger capacity NAS device with robust RAID 5 capability”, the company’s TeraStation™ ES series is available in a variety of capacities. I have been taking a look at the TS-XEL/R5 unit which is available as a 4-bay fully populated device. My particular unit came with four 500GB drives giving the product a total capacity of 2.0 TB of storage.
SSD drives always carry a substantial premium over conventional hard drives, however the price of storage is one of the few things that continue to drop, while we are meant to have low inflation few have seen real wage growth for many years.
While an external hard drive used to be almost as big as an internal drive, then when they went from 5¼ inch to 3½ inch things began to tumble in size as well as cost. Original USB drives needed external power as well as that provided by the USB bus, now few if any USB drives – however large – require more power that delivered by the USB bus. This drive is tiny at 9x5.5x1cm and weighs only 69 grams, with its box and lead its 156grams.
Moving files – especially larger ones – between devices like phones and PC’s has always required extra thought, the trouble is they are often last minute thoughts? Here a solution from Kingston that is as easy as plug it in to a USB port.
A while ago their solution for micro USB ports arrived here a solution if your phone has a USB C port. It is 3x1.5x.7cm and weights a tiny 4 grams. The capacity sizes available are up to 128GB the sample that I requested to be sent was 64GB simply because not all phones will accept 128GB.
Having told you about the other two units in the latest Canvio range the chance came up to tell you about the Basics offering. This is - Bus Powered - so no need for external power as with earlier external drives so it should plug in and be ready to use.
The memory is 3TB or 2.72 TB depending on how you calculate the available space. It is 12x7.5x1.5cm but the USB3 plug fits into the back meaning you need another 3cm of total space so 15x7.5x1.5cm is required. It weighs 207grams and the box has a padded bubble wrap bag idea for moving it around. There is a 22 language PDF file on the drive, the first eight pages are in English and should answer most questions.
The need for storage capacity continues to grow. To help ease this situation, Buffalo has released a new TeraStation series.
Adding to its range of NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices, Buffalo has introduced its TeraStation™ 3010 series. This particular series consists of three main models covering capacities from 2TB up to 16TB with either 2 or 4 bays. I have been looking at the TS3210DN0202-EU model which is a 2-bay unit with a capacity of 2TB of storage. Featuring a pair of 1TB SATA drives, this NAS box is predominately black in colour although there are gun metal grey panels around the front of the unit.
Carrying your personal data in your pocket requires hardware such as the subject of this next review.
As data tends to become more mobile in its use, it is always useful to have a device or even multiple devices that can provide a combination of storage space, mobility and encryption protection. Recently Buffalo send me a device, falling into all these categories, to check out. This is the company’s MiniStation™ SSD-PMU3 product. The Buffalo MiniStation SSD is a portable hard drive.
While flash drives are useful for transporting data, they do run the risk of being lost or stolen. So the data they contain should be protected.
Your data, especially of the personal variety, is valuable, not only to you but others who might be prepared to put it to use for their own nefarious practices. As this data is your personal property, it is up to you to make sure it is adequately protected at all times whether it is stored on your main computer or being transported between locations on a flash drive.
The Toshiba Canvio Alu portable USB 3.0 hard drives, which form part of the company’s Advanced range, are solidly built 2.5 inch units and are available in a choice of capacities from 500GB to 2.5TB