Top positive review
About as Plug-and-Play Easy as it Gets
Reviewed in the United States on December 24, 2017
Solid, well-designed quality product.
I'm running Windows 7 Pro 64-bit -- on all of my seven computers in the house -- and this is about as plug-and-play easy as it gets.
Literally: (1) open plastic enclosure (2) insert 3.5" hard drive (3) slide cover back on (4) plug the AC power adapter into the enclosure (5) connect the USB cable from the enclosure to your computer (6) press the power button on the enclosure to "on" (i.e. "on" is when the button is depressed; "off" is when the button sticks out a little bit). When you're connected to a computer that is on, and the hard drive enclosure power is on, the blue LED light will light up after a few seconds.
Windows 7 will automatically find and install the necessary drivers for both the enclosure, and the drive (we're talking maybe 10-20 seconds here). Probably best to be connected to the Internet, just in case Windows needs to find a driver.
(If you're using WinDoze 10, I will say a prayer for you -- but the enclosure works for all versions of Windows, from XP to Windows 10).
If you are simply moving an existing hard drive -- one that is already in use and has information on it -- to the hard drive enclosure, that's it. You're done.
NOW LISTEN CAREFULLY! If you are using a NEW hard drive, you still need to initialize the drive in order for your computer (i.e. Windows) to recognize and use the NEW drive. This applies to whenever a NEW drive is connected to a computer, and has nothing to do with the enclosure!
SO, I don't want to read any "the enclosure sucked, the drive was defective, etc." comments due to you not initializing your NEW hard drive. Capisce?
Also remember, USB connected hard drives are NOT intended for booting your Windows computer from (if it would even let you try). So, do not install, or attempt to install, your OS onto a drive in an external USB enclosure!
I bought six of these, and have already put three into service -- flawlessly.
Primarily, I needed an inexpensive way to remove full-to-the-max hard drives from my computers, and still be able to access them when needed. This enclosure does this perfectly! Plus the extra bonus of now being able to connect the drives archived in the external enclosure, via USB, to any other USB equipped computer.
A word about Windows XP...
Windows XP will only recognize hard drives up to 2 TB in size. If you try using a hard drive larger than 2 TB with Windows XP, it won't be able to see the entire drive. The work-a-round with XP, with drives larger than 2 TB, is to partition the hard drive into multiple volumes of 2 TB or less.
DO NOT try to partition a hard drive that already has files on it! You will most likely lose data, and be very, very sorry.
As a rule, partitioning a hard drive is something you do with a NEW drive -- and you know why you're doing it!
If you don't know why you want or need to partition a hard drive into multiple volumes, then DON'T do it.
For most people, you want to create what Windows refers to as a "Simple Volume" (i.e. the entire hard drive is one single volume), when you initialize and format a NEW hard drive.
When you initialize and format a NEW hard drive, you will be asked to choose between MBT (Master Boot Record) or GPT (Globally Unique Identifier Partition Table) when you setup the drive.
Basically, if your hard drive is 2 TB or less, you should choose MBT. If your hard drive is larger than 2 TB, you should choose GPT.
I have been using 1 TB, 2 TB and 4 TB hard drives in this enclosure effortlessly and with no issues whatsoever.
Personally, I wouldn't put drives larger than 4 TB in an external, sealed enclosure of this type (i.e. potential heat issues on thicker multiple-platter drives), although larger drives should still work.
FWIW, I have even been using one of my enclosures as a means to format new hard drives before installing them into computers. This way, I have my new drive ready-to-go before I remove an existing drive from a computer, and just pop it in to replace the drive I'm removing. Then, the drive I just removed gets transferred to one of these great hard drive enclosures and, just like that, I have an instant archive :)
FYI, I'm using these enclosures as a way to archive 4 TB hard drives that I have filled full-to-the-max, so that I can fill-up even more hard drives.
I'm working with a lot of video files, and this allows me to easily access files on drives that I have archived to the external enclosure.
Finally, heat is just not an issue with this enclosure.
My 4 TB Western Digital 5400-RPM drives idle at about 85 degrees Fahrenheit (7200-RPM drives might run a bit warmer) in this enclosure.
Even when I perform a complete format, lasting 10-12 hours, the drives never go higher than 100 degrees Fahrenheit -- which is well within the safe temperature zone for hard drives.
TIP: If you're using this enclosure for archiving hard drives (e.g. you don't need to access the drive all the time), then just leave it off. You don't have to leave hard drives running unless you're going to be accessing them. And, a drive that's not running generates no heat at all :)
Great product at an affordable price.