Replacing Hard Drive

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by LenC, Oct 13, 2006.

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  1. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    I have a 4+ year old Dell Dimension 4500 with a 40 gig hard drive. I would like to upgrade the drive - and then use 9.0 to clone drive and keep 40 gig as a fully functional spare.

    Can I purchase any drive? I read discussions about SATA, PATA, IDE and don't understand difference.

    Thank you,
    Len
     
  2. Colvin

    Colvin Registered Member

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    I'm not a Dell expert by any stretch of the imagination, although I have to repair them often enough. If your PC is 4+ years old, my guess would be that you will need an IDE drive as SATA or PATA drives won't be compatible with your motherboard.
     
  3. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    Colvin -

    One follow up question...

    Seems like they come in many flavors...ATA, ATA 100, ATA 33, ATA 133. Are these all IDE drives, which you suggest might work for my computer? What does the number represent? Is it speed?

    Thank you,
    Len
     
  4. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer Registered Member

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    Len~

    For sure your Dim 4500's motherboard does not have a SATA controller, but if you would like to get a SATA drive you could buy a SATA PCI Controller Card for your 4500. SATA drives provide somewhat faster throughput than ATA drives, although with your PC I don't think you would realize a significant benefit. Do not even think about any ATA drive slower than ATA100!!! Considering your motherboard's controller, both an ATA100 drive and ATA133 drive will operate at the ATA100 level as that's the limit of your motherboard's disk-controller.

    Considering the age of your PC, my recommendation is to get a large capacity (160GB - 250GB) ATA100 or ATA133 drive with at least an 8MB cache buffer (great deals can usually be found on these). I would then partition the drive into 2 -partitions (C & D). Since your original drive is 40GB, I would make your new C-partition the same size (that should prevent ATI cloning difficulties), using it for Windows, Program Files, etc. Allow the D-partition to consume the rest of the available storage, and use it to store all of your personal files (data, music, photo's, documents, etc.).

    Regardless of whether you decide on an ATA drive or the newer SATA drives, I highly recommend that you make sure you have the latest BIOS for your 4500. You can log onto Dell Support and enter your Service Tag # which will reveal the BIOS version on your board as well as the latest BIOS flash available for download.

    Hope I haven't further confused you. ~pv
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2006
  5. Allen L.

    Allen L. Registered Member

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    I got a homebuild with one SATA HD and one PATA (IDE) HD...the transfer rates for any SATA drive at the present time is not really worth the hassles of installs, drivers, and such problems with Acronis. The little cables that came out with the 2 year old Motherboards are lousy and they have no clips to hold them to the attachers on the MB and can be brushed against and come loose. If I had it to do over, I would have used 2 IDE HD's...you can always get the narrow 80 conductor non-ribbon cables for IDE drives.

    Sata3 is out now, and that's the way HD's are going to be configured from now on...but they are still lagging far behind the MB's chipsets capable tranfer rates...they burst a little faster than PATA HDs, but it is a very un-noticeable real world speed increase.

    Stick with IDE (PATA) drives for now, especially with your Dell...by the way the 4500's didn't have MB connectors (to the best of my knowledge) for SATA.

    Allen
     
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