I am noticing that hard drives are saying that they only work on Windows 8 and higher now:
I usually buy my Hard Drives from Best Buy Canada but Canada Post doesn't carry the Visa Prepaid Gift Cards that I have been using to do online banking anymore. I can buy Amazon Cards at the local post office. Best Buy in the specs for the hard drives a lot of times now says Windows 8 and above. So does this mean I won't have new hard drives that will work Windows 7?
Thanks in advance for any advice you can give me concerning this issue.
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Last edited by Tom Saurus; 28th Jul 2021 at 09:03.
They will work with Windows 7 too.
ProWo: Thank you for your post. I am mighty tempted by those 4 and 5 TB hard drives. I have never went above 2 TB but those prices are so terrific.
STGX2000400, read that it uses SMR recording.
Supposed to take a performance hit compared to CMR.
Fry's went Pfffttttt, so I had to look to some 'Plan B' on my periodic portable HDD purchases. Costco occasionally had some good deals on the higher capacity ones I like, though not recently. (I prefer the WD Passport line, Made in Thailand, 3 year warranty. Have tried a Seagate once in a rare while.) My last purchase was on a holiday sale at Best Buy, and included one each of 4 and 5 TB portable HDDs. Sale prices were O.K., though not anything I'd rave about. I'd be inclined to wait for the next attractive sale, whenever that may be -- no real hurry. I'm continuing to use these across various device connections, incl. Win-7 and Win-10 computers. I was not that thrilled to see the higher capacity MyBook line -- still "portable", if relatively less so than the ones we're mainly talking about here -- switch to that ExFAT format. Some say 'Never Mind, it's fine", but for convenience and cross-compatibility when I run into that again I think I'll immediately reformat it to NTFS.
Win 8 is essentially Window 7.5, an interim release while MS works on their real major update. Win ME > Win XP, Vista > Win 7, Win 8 > Win 10. Win XP can't natively recognize drives >2TB. When greater than 2TB external drives were first introduced, the USB interface was designed to allow access to the higher capacity. This type of interface was discontinued after Win 7 was introduced.
There are no good, better or best drives on the market today. If there were, you'd see tens or hundreds of thousands of good or bad reviews of the millions of identical drives in use. Buy on price per TB. Generally, the larger the drive, the cheaper per TB.
There are no special run of drives for use in any external, portable or desktop. They're all drives from the regular production lines. They may be binned drives that didn't meet the full specs to be sold at retail, production overruns or from cancelled orders.
There are only three hard drive manufacturers today. WD/Hitachi, Seagate and Toshiba. No matter the external case or label, the drive is from one of these.
Always buy at least two drives at a once. One for immediate backup and any storage device can fail at any time, for any reason with or without notice.
A few pointers about 2.5" portable drives.
All current 2.5" portable drives >1TB and with the exception of specialized NAS or Enterprise drives, all WD drive <10TB and Seagate drives <8TB are SMR, Shingled Magnetic Recording. As it name states, like shingles on a roof, data write partially overlaps the previous data, requiring a partial erasure and rewrite of the existing data, resulting in generally slower writes and especially overwrites of existing files. Read speed is the same as a non-SMR drive. Generally this isn't an issue for most users. If write speed is a concern, use an SSD.
The max size of a 2.5" drive is 5TB. This is a physical constraint of using five 1TB platters, the largest for 2.5" drives. lordsmurf uses and recommends 5TB Seagates.
All WD and Toshiba portables have the USB interface and port integrated into the mainboard. If/when the interface or port fails, an expensive, $$$ modification to attach a SATA (standard HDD interface) connector is required. Seagate portables are regular SATA drives with a detachable SATA to USB interface. If the interface fails, spend $20-30 for a SATA to USB cable or attach it directly as an internal drive for free.
How common is it that the USB interface/port on a WD drive fails? Common enough for this data recovery company to have it in their FAQ: https://www.300dollardatarecovery.com/faq/#mypassport
Also note that WD My Passport portables encrypt the data on the drive. This requires not only a board swap, but the firmware chip has to be transferred from the old board to the replacement. $100 extra for this.
>2TB drives, especially 4 & 5TB, may not work properly older devices, Smart TVs and unpowered hubs, even if the port is USB 3.0 and probably not at all on USB 2.0. The reason is the additional platters requires the higher amperage of USB 3.0 to properly spin up and stay spinning. The drive spinning up or spinning up, then down or not being recognized are indications of this. I highly recommend getting a USB Y-connector that allows you to use two USB ports for additional power. If possible, don't use ports adjacent to each other as they may be bridged internally, splitting the power and bandwidth.
I'd be inclined to wait for the next attractive sale, whenever that may be -- no real hurry.
Fortunately, demand is highest for large >8TB 3.5" drives and 2.5" drive prices have remained stable at ~$20-25/TB for larger drives.
Do not buy or use this exFat only drives. They are a mess.
Chinese made hard drives? You must have a hit a source that I've never heard of as there are only three hard drive manufacturers, WD/Hitachi, Seagate and Toshiba.
A search for exfat only hard drive brings up scant results, https://www.google.com/search?q=exfat+%5Conly+hard+drive&rlz=1C1ASVC_enUS940US940&biw=...h1QMIDw&uact=5but it's likely what I suspected, there's probably much smaller drives formatted that way to disguise that they're much smaller drives. This is a common scam with flash drives and SD cards. Have you filled to the drives to capacity and read the earliest files back? They won't work because they're overwritten by the newer files. Linus Tech Tips explains the scam here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-D6tYBX8vE
So yes, you're correct. But it's a case of too cheap to be true.
Haven't read about it happening with portable drives, yet, but swapping out a smaller hard drive or even rocks! on desktop externals is a scam that's been on the rise the past few years. There are reports that people are getting "new" externals that sometimes even show up as the correct size, but are much smaller. This has been reported from even the big retailers, Amazon, Newegg, BestBuy especially, who resell returned shrinkwrapped drives as new. When the new buyer tries to return the drive or RMA it, they're denied because the seller claims it's the new buyer that did the switch.
It's so bad that people of videoing themselves unwrapping and using the drive or opening them up and testing them with their laptop in-store. I went into heavy detail about ways to this in this thread at digitalfaq.com http://www.digitalfaq.com/forum/computers/11901-hdds-large-capacities.html In a nutshell. Immediately run CrystalDiskInfo when you get your drive. If anything is yellow or red, return the drive immediately! This will give you info about the drive status including model # and number of times the drive has been started up and hours used. They may not be zero because of factory testing, but they should be single digits. But beware because these stats can be faked. The next step is to do a full write and read of the drive at least once. This can take days for larger drives, but is critical. Test read random files, especially the earliest ones for corruption. Then run CrystalDiskInfo again.
A lot of testing and time required, but worth it for something you hope to get years of use out of.
Will have some comment on post #12 by lingyi, but for now a more immediate problem. Just bought a 5 TB Seagate portable HDD, and until I can determine otherwise, I'm wondering whether I may just have trashed it ? I discovered that it was preformatted as exFAT, which I prefer not to deal with, so I went to reformat it as NTFS -- as I've done with a few previous HDDs, though not one that was larger than 3 GB. The first sign of a problem was that the latest version of Rufus, which I had to update to for this, also completely failed to even see the drive. I prefer to avoid using Windows to format: although it may do a more thorough job (?), because it is so terribly SLOW ! Rufus has always made quick work of this task for me, and I've never had any problem with the results. (Wondering what other tool I should use, if I can't rely on Rufus for this ?)
So, I reluctantly next settled for the native Format utility of Win-10. And this is what happened. It just hung after several hours, at 33 %, leaving the HDD in some nether state, and possibly no longer even accessible.
F:\>FORMAT F: /X /FS:NTFS
The type of the file system is EXFAT.
The new file system is NTFS.
Enter current volume label for drive F: One Touch
WARNING, ALL DATA ON NON-REMOVABLE DISK
DRIVE F: WILL BE LOST!
Proceed with Format (Y/N)? Y
Formatting 4.5 TB
Volume dismounted. All opened handles to this volume are now invalid.
The media being formatted has been removed or has become invalid.
And it looks to have dropped half a terrabyte in the process ?
I'll probably give the Win Format another go, but What Next ?
i'd try using diskpart. list disk, select disk, clean disk, format disk. p.s. make sure to run diskpart as admin.--
"a lot of people are better dead" - prisoner KSC2-303