We all have run out of memory at some point. Need for storage capacity increases each year as technology develops software and games are getting bigger also media files are getting better quality and increases in size. What to do if you run out of internal hard drives memory? The easiest solution is to get an external hard drive. Just plug it in through USB port and there is new free space for your data.

An external hard drive functions exactly like a regular hard drive, but it is portable and does not need to be installed inside your computer.

Why to get an external hard drive?

Accidents may happen as well; such as the laptop getting soaked in a sudden rain, or spilling coffee on it during those bouts with sleep and deadlines. All these incidents can damage the laptop’s data integrity and run the risk of losing everything on it. Furthermore files take up too much space nowadays, from high-definition videos to animated presentations and many more. Thus, there is a continuous need to increase memory space. All these concerns can be addressed by investing on an an external hard drive.


Another thing besides backups is a place to store your media files and games if you own a gaming console like Xbox One or PS4. External hard drive is the easiest way how to increase your gaming consoles memory and play games right from your external hard drive.

External hard drives also make data transfer quite easy. For example, you wanted to replace your computer for a better or faster one but would like all your files and system to remain as is; all you need to do is back-up or copy everything from the old computer and transfer it to the new one. Depending on the memory of the external hard drive, multiple data sets can be stored in it too. The largest memory available today is measured by TB or terabytes.


Hard drives are the storage component inside PCs, Laptop, Mac and just about any gadget nowadays. All files such as pictures, documents, music, videos and games are stored here; and can be retrieved whenever needed. But most importantly, the very OS on which the computer runs is also stored, along with the computer’s installed applications and other software.

External hard drive types

There are many types of external hard drives. Most common of them are portable and desktop drives. Portable drives require only one cable – USB, and that’s it. They are also quite slim and easy to carry around. On the other hand desktop, external hard drives feature higher capacities, but they also require two cables – one for power and one for transferring data. They are meant for a stationary use.

2.5 inch vs 3.5 inchWe can also divide external hard drives deeper – mechanical drives with actual disc spinning in them and Solid State drives that typically uses the NAND type of flash memory. SSD external hard drives are much faster and more reliable than mechanical drives, but they also have a way higher price. If SSD is 3x times as fast as a mechanical drive, it also costs 3x as much.

Some external hard drive models have sleek encasing designs and are quite lightweight. It is like having an exact replica of what’s inside your computer, sans the monitor and keyboard. Most external hard drive units have a “plug it and use it” mechanism too.

You can use and access them like you would a normal external memory or USB flash drive.

How to choose an external hard drive?

If you have decided to get yourself an external hard drive, you should know how you will use it. If you’re always on the move and want to save space, you should go with the portable external hard drive. However, if you plan to use it quite stationary, for example, to increase your PS4 storage capacity, go for a desktop drive. If you need help choosing the right external hard drive, check out our External Hard Drive Buying Guide.

If you do want to carry your drive around a lot, consider getting a rugged external hard drive. You can find ones with the IP68 standard. These drives are very reliable and can survive heavy environmental impacts.

It is helpful to determine your data usage to know the external hard drive capacity suitable for you. If you have many programs, movies or apps that take up large memory, you can opt for an external hard drive with higher data storage capacity. Just remember that the larger the memory is, the higher the costs too.

To end, having an external hard drive is becoming quite a necessity, especially for tech-savvy users. It is always good to have a back-up for your electronic files especially since these files can get corrupted or wiped out easily.


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