Get Backup! The Maxtor OneTouch II 300GB External Hard Drive

By | January 16, 2006

(Update: While the hard drive I mention in this article is now very outdated, the principles still apply. I still use backup drives to backup my PC regularly. Now you can get 10X the storage for a fraction of the price of what I paid back then…)

Edition #15 – 1/16/2006

This is really more of a general piece of advice than a product review. The product is the Maxtor hard drive I just bought, but the advice is “get backup – whatever that may be!”

After noticing that my MS Outlook was holding over 100,000 unarchived emails, I realized I hadn’t backed up Outlook in awhile. Then after thinking for a moment, I realized that I really didn’t have a good backup of my entire PC. I had been backing up a copy of everything important to my laptop, but I realized that if my PC had a meltdown it would be a HUGE inconvenience, loss of time, and loss of the less important (but still necessary) files that I had neglected to backup.

That left no question in my mind; I needed to count myself blessed for having avoided disaster thus far, and get backup ASAP instead of continuing to play data-loss roulette.

So I did what I normally do when I need to buy a piece of technology: I headed over to CNET, read some reviews, and picked a solution as soon as I felt comfortable with one. When I do comparison shopping, my goal is to get educated FAST. So many people spend days and weeks researching a small to medium sized purchase. You need to keep in mind – how much is your time worth? If you spend an entire day doing research just to save $30, it’s like saying your time is only worth $30/day.

Within about 15 minutes I had read enough reviews about Maxtor, LaCie and Western Digital’s top drives to know which one I wanted. I chose the Maxtor OneTouch II 300GB, and paid about $235 for it. I received it two days later, popped in the CD, installed the software, plugged it in, and ran a backup.

So far, I’m very happy with it. Drive and the software is very simple, and yes you can literally hit one button on the drive and it will backup your computer. If you don’t need 300GB, you can actually save quite a bit of money by going with their 200GB model.

I chose the 300GB because it will fit a copy of my PC, laptop, AND two linux servers I use for my websites! Of course I keep an online backup of the web servers, but it’s a nice feeling to also have an extra backup of all the accounts ready to upload if I needed to.

Windows views the drive just like any other HD, so you can also store anything on it just by dragging and dropping (you don’t have to use it as just a backup – you can use it to store media, etc).

In case you missed it, there were really two marketing tips hidden in this article. So if you want to do what I do, take these tips to heart…

1) Get backup – your data is worth it!
2) Consider the value of your time whenever you’re comparison shopping.

9 thoughts on “Get Backup! The Maxtor OneTouch II 300GB External Hard Drive

  1. Björn Persson

    Hi Eric,
    I just have to spam your blog again, this is a comment that’s not related to your post, it’s to all users of The Article System. I’ve posted a snippet-rotator on my blog today and explained how to use it 🙂

  2. Steve

    Can you give an update on how the Maxtor drive is working for you? Based on your recommendation, I went to cnet to check it out. This drive has tons of bad reviews from users. Everything from it being defective out of the box to the bundled software being very “buggy” and unuseable for the “one touch” backup feature. Supposedly, the software that comes with the drive that allows for the “one touch” backup does not work well with XP SP2. The cnet review also says it doesn’t work on linux computers, yet you mentioned that you use it to back up 2 linux machines. Are you still using this drive? Has it been reliable for you?

  3. Eric Post author

    Steve- thanks for asking.

    UPDATE: The drive became corrupted after 6 months of use. I had been very happy with it, and it worked great, but unfortunately it doesn’t seem to be the best. I bought another external drive to extract the data to, and then I’m going to reformat the Maxtor and keep using it. Hopefully it will not be a common recurrance. I’ll try to remember to post here if it happens again.

    Good grief- its to the point that I need a backup for my backup (and now I have one) 😉


  4. Brian K. Shoemake

    I have been using the Seagate 200GB External Backup Drive for about 2 yrs now and it has never missed a beat! I also set up the same drive on my mom’s pc and it’s working great for the last year. I have tried all the different drives, and I prefer the Seagate because it is the next best thing to complete and total silence! From my experience, I recommend the Seagate for external backup drives!…


  5. Charles Brown

    Hi Eric,

    Ditto for me for Seagate—I got a 250G Seagate external HD for $78 (sale) at Best Buy because their internal drives have never failed for me for 5 years of daily use…


  6. Robert Donahue

    I have had Backups corrupted, I have not had good luck with SATA drives:( every one I ever bought failed within the year, now I keep 3rd Gen back ups (in a fire proof Safe!) to much data to play games with ….Stop in and pick up a Circuit City Gift Card or Coupon, tons of Hard drives on eBay as well…..

  7. Bockereyer


    I stopped using external HD’s for storage and backup, at least the drives without active cooling. Now I use FreeNAS on an good old Compaq and Syncback SE on my computer. FreeNAS is on a small HD (it also works with a bootable CD and flash drive for the configuration) and 2x 250 GB drives for data and backup. The hard disks and the promise RAID controller did cost me about € 260 ($ 350) and $27 for Sycnback SE. IMHO this is one of the best and cheapest storage and backup solutions.

    My data security plan now is: SB synchronizes the data on my local drive to the FreeNAS data drive every time I login on my computer and every week SB automatically makes a complete backup from the FreeNAS data drive to the FreeNAS backup drive. This way I have 2 copies of my data.
    If you where suspenders and a belt your trousers will never fell down 😉

  8. Crash Video Clips

    Hi Eric Gert here…

    I strongly believe in the backup of data. What type of backup software is working best. Any ideas. And yes – it would be great if you can afford a system such as “Bockereyer” wrote about.

    I walking around holding my trousers up with one hand 🙂

  9. Pingback: Where To Turn When Malware Strikes Your PC | Eric’s Tips

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