Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Newertech miniStack

My rig - 1
Originally uploaded by rangerteper.
I've been wanting to get one of these for a good six months but kept putting it off. I finally ordered one last week and it arrived on Friday. I've been putting it through its paces ever since. So far, I give it a solid 4 stars out of 5, with possible bump up to 4.5 if things continue to go smoothly.

The only thing I don't like about it is that the fan runs continuously while the drive is operating, and I'm not convinced that's necessary. It also makes more noise accessing the disc than my mini, but that's to be expected, I suppose, with a 3.5" drive.

On the plus side, I have the mini booting off the external drive, and its faster 7200 rpm speed does seem to give my poor over-taxed computer a bit of a boost. It's not a huge improvement, but it's noticable, especially when launching applications and accessing preference panes.

I also love the extra USB and Firewire ports the miniStack enclosure has; and the drive powers up and down along with the mini.

Thus far I have partitioned the 300-gig drive into three sections: a 35-gig scratch disc for Photoshop Elements (not sure if this will improve things--any suggestions would be welcome), a 150-gig main boot partition, and a 95-gig backup partition. I love all the breathing room, and I feel so much more safe and secure knowing that I have a daily backup of all my critical files and a more extensive weekly backup. Plus I'll be cloning my boot drive (hopefully once a week too) to the mini's 80-gig drive.

Now I can free up a bunch of space on my iPod to install a boot copy of OS X for emergencies. Am I becoming a backup fanatic? Perhaps, but I've been burned once...

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