External Hard Drive vs Internal for 2005 iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by shenandoah, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. shenandoah, Oct 7, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012

    shenandoah macrumors newbie

    2005 iMac, runs great, but like alot of people, I've got tons of music, photo's, documents and home business STUFF on my 2005 iMac. Which by the way, I LOVE, won't give up until it's Stone Cold DEAD. But, I need more storage space.
    How about a Hard Drive Dock? Recommended ones?

    And how about external hard drives?
    I keep reading different things about external hd's, you move it, it goes bad. I like the prices on Amazon for the Western Digital and Seagate 3tb usb 2.0. Right around $150 for a 3tb external.

    vs an Internal HD in dock or storage enclosure or whatever you call it? I kinda like the WD Caviar 2tb 7200 SATA 3.5".

    And Please go easy on the computer language, I'm not that much of a computer geek. :)

    You guys helped me out with my questions on an internal, but now hubby is talking about a dock with external. btw: he also has an identical 2005 iMac, which I'm using now. He doesn't have half the 'stuff' that I have on mine, but he only uses his for web surfing and bill paying. Mine is the work horse.

    Thanks! Shen
  2. Neodym macrumors 68000


    Jul 5, 2002
    Having an external dock (only) makes sense if you have more than one hard drive you want to use at times. And then you still have to handle bare drives without housing, which are sensitive to shock and static electricity. Besides - I found that build quality more often than not is mediocre at best. Eventually on the cheap ones they are using the standard connectors for internal hard drives, which are specified for not so many (50-100 or something in that range) plug/unplug cycles before they start to wear.

    Verdict: Not recommended.

    Replacing the internal drive could make sense if you we're experienced. Otherwise I'd recommend you having this done by a technician (or a skilled kid from the neighborhood). However - depending on your exact model there may be technical restrictions.

    Going for an external drive is probably the easiest way. Don't worry - usually they are more robust than you think. And they are designd to be plugged and unplugged more often compared to that dock solution mentioned above.

    If you don't like having the external box sitting on your desk with additional cables, you may take a look at network attached storage (NAS). This is similar to an external box you plug directly into your computer - only that you can put it to a place (closet, attic or similar) where it does not disturb you. And you access it via network - either cabled network (Ethernet) or cable free network (WLan).

    An example for that would be Apples own TimeCapsule, but other companies have interesting products available as well.
  3. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Since your computer is 2005 I'll assume its a G5 and I'll take the liberty of saying its a 20" screen. Apple has document on replacing the hard drive. You should always have an external drive for backup, either in a caddy that allows you to remove the drive and store it for security after the backup or one that is permanently attached. External drives that work on your iMac are very slow compared to internal so I would only use it for smaller items or emergencies (like backup). Also note that 7 years is a long time for a hard drive so I would think about internal replacement or at the very least external backup.

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