How to Choose a New Laptop Hard Drive
By on May 4th, 2010

Guest post by Manas Pandey

hd-001 Your laptop’s hard drive is the major source for storing all your data. It is the place where all your applications, files and other data are stored. A typical laptop hard drive measures 2.5 x 2.5 inches in size and is smaller and lighter compared to a desktop hard drive. It is also available with different storage and data access capabilities.

Generally, people change their laptop hard drives only when the original hard drive gets corrupted or stops functioning. However, changing hard drives just to increase the storage capacity of laptop is also very common. Whatever the reason for changing the laptop hard drive, the following factors should be kept in mind while choosing a new one:

Form factor and interface:
The laptop hard drive is available in different form factors and has different interfaces. Form factor primarily refers to the external dimensions of a hard drive. It is important that you opt for a laptop hard drive with a form factor and interface that is compatible with your laptop. If you are not aware of the process to install or uninstall hard drive, you must contact the laptop manufacture or get a professional to help you with the process.

Capacity and Performance:
A hard drive with large capacity allows to you to store more data. It is therefore essential that you choose a hard drive with enough storing capacity. In my opinion, for an average user a hard drive with 250GB storage space is sufficient. The performance of the drive depends on the spindle speed of the disk. The faster the spindle speed, the faster the data is accessed and the better your hard drive will perform.

The RPM (Rotation per Minute) value refers to the spindle speed and is a vital factor in determining the functional capacity of the hard drive. The spindle speed of a typical hard drive is about 5,400 RPM. A laptop hard drive with faster spindle speed has better performance but consumes more powers and heats up quickly. For example, a hard drive with 7,200 RPM consume more power and gives better performance than a hard drive with 4,200 RPM. You must therefore choose a hard drive, which offers reasonable RPM, consumes less power and delivers good performance. It is also advisable that you confirm from your laptop manufacturer that the hard drive will work with your particular laptop configuration. Not all laptops will support a high RPM hard drive.

Cache:
Cache helps to improve the functioning of a hard drive by keeping the data intact for temporary or instant use. A hard drive with larger cache will hold more data and thus the functional capacity of a hard drive is greatly increased. Generally, laptop hard drive comes with different cache options starting from 2MB and 8MB to 16MB.

Finally, if you have selected the model and brand of the hard drive, keep in mind that newer versions of the drive will always be better than older versions. So make an informed decision on your new hard drive.

About the author:
Manas Pandey writes technology related articles, providing useful information on
Laptops, Smartphones, Tablet PCs and other handheld computing devices.

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