The popularity of DVD writers/re-writers has surged thanks to
dropping prices, and they are pushing the stand alone CD burner
towards extinction. DVD media affords the user far more storage
capacity than a CD, and DVD burners can generally burn CDs as
wells as DVDs. The recent availability of double layer DVD burners,
such as the Sony DW-D22A-DO-N, represents a large boost in the
capacity of writable DVDs, taking the previous limit of 4.7GB
per disc and nearly doubling it to 8.5GB.
With proper storage, CD/DVD media can provide long term storage
that can not be jeopardized by hardware failure. The data on a
CD or DVD can easily be read by just about any computer, making
it a good choice for archiving files that aren't excessively large.
3. External Hard Drives
As the name might imply, external hard drives are generally the
same type of drive you might find inside your system, but housed
in a smaller, external enclosure of its own. The enclosure will
feature at least one data interface (such as Firewire, USB, or
Ethernet), and the capacity is only limited by the size of hard
drives presently available and the user's budget.
The Ximeta NetDisk is an example of an external hard drive that
provides a user the option of connecting an additional 80GB, 120GB,
or 160GB of storage to their system by using either a USB 2.0
or Ethernet connection. Installation for such a device is rather
simple, and may involve the installation of some basic software,
as well as making the necessary connections between the computer
and the external enclosure.
The capacity of external hard drives makes them ideal for backing
up large volumes of data, and many of these devices simplify the
process by including software (or hardware) features to automate
For example, some Seagate External drives feature a “one-button”
backup option right on the case.In addition to being a convenient
method of backing up large volumes of files locally, most external
hard drives are compact enough to be portable. The inclusion of
a common data transfer interface, such as USB, allows an external
hard drive to be connected to just about any modern computer for
data transfer, or for more than one computer to share the external
hard drive as a back up.