Protect Your Files with these Great External Hard Drives

Keep your critical files safe and expand your PC’s storage with these drives

Woman working on laptop computer connected to an external hard drive.
Back up your vital electronic data with a reliable external hard drive. Unsplash

Think, for a moment, about what would happen if you suddenly lost access to all the files on your computer’s hard drive. All of those important photos and cherished family memories? Gone. All of those business documents that you spent hours upon hours creating? Vanished in an instant. These are just a few of the reasons why external hard drives are so important – by backing up your critical data to a secondary location, you reduce the risk of ever falling into this type of situation again.

But whether you’re looking for a way to safeguard your files or just want to add a bit of additional storage, know that not all external drives are created equally. With that in mind, here is our list of the top external hard drives available to purchase right now.

Seagate STGX1000400 Portable 1TB External Hard Drive
This external hard drive from Seagate supports data transfer speeds of up to 480MB/s using USB 2.0, and an incredible 5GB/s when using USB 3.0 cables. Seagate

This impressive external hard drive from Seagate allows you to take between 1TB and 5TB of important files and other documents with you wherever you go, depending on which of the capacity models you choose to meet your needs. Users with multiple computers in their home will love the fact that it’s designed to work with both Windows and MacOS – meaning that you can easily drag and drop files from one system to another and back again without any additional work being required. But the best part of all is that this particular device is plug-and-play compatible – so to get it working, all you have to do is plug it into your machine using the included cable. Just like that, all of your storage needs are finally answered and you can rest easy.

WD 2TB Elements Portable External Hard Drive
This “no frills” portable hard drive from Western Digital is the perfect solution for anyone who needs to add a significant amount of storage to their system quickly. Western Digital

Next we have this portable external hard drive from Western Digital – available in capacities ranging from 1TB all the way up to 5TB. It’s compatible with both USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, meaning that you can use it on just about any computer in your home built in the last 15 years. It, too, works with both Windows and MacOS operating systems right out of the box – though you may have to do a quick reformat to another file system if you want to use it on a platform like Linux.

Samsung (MU-PA1T0B/AM) T5 Portable SSD
This solid state drive from Samsung comes with features that make it one of the more versatile options, like USB Type C to C and Type C to A cables. Samsung

Unlike some of the other entries on this list, this external hard drive from Samsung is a solid state drive – meaning that it uses Flash-based technology for storage rather than the old school “disk and platter” method. Because there are no moving parts on the inside of the drive, it’s far more likely to be able to stand up to bumps, drops, falls and other types of physical damage. Other additional features include optional password protection and AES 256-bit hardware encryption for increased security.

Toshiba (HDTB410XK3AA) Canvio Basics 1TB Portable External Hard Drive
This Toshiba external hard disk drive is compatible with Mac and Windows operating systems and has a sleek look to match. Toshiba

This portable drive from Toshiba comes in a few size variants, ranging from a svelte 1TB all the way up to 4TB for those major file storage needs. One major area where this particular drive manages to impress is its appearance – the sleek profile design and the smudge-resistance finish make it a perfect addition to any desk or office environment. It’s USB 2.0 compatible with no external AC power cords needed.

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