Can I make an external HDD using an HDD from an old PC?

By Godper ยท 10 replies
Jan 21, 2008
  1. I have a 40GB Seagate St340823A which is the internal hard drive of a dead PC.

    Can I take that unit (which works fine, AFAIK) and build an external drive from it?

    Is there a kit which would take me most of the way there? Or would I have to start from scratch?

    I'm not necessarily trying to do it in the cheapest way possible. But the easiest way possible would be good. :)

    I want to be able to access the info that is currently on the disk. So if there is an easier way, do feel free to tell me... :rolleyes:

  2. CCT

    CCT TS Evangelist Posts: 2,653   +6

    Google 'external enclosure hard drive' and get one that supports USB 2.0 AND firewire.

    Read reviews.
  3. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    and make sure the external enclosure has some kind of cooling
  4. Stick'o ram

    Stick'o ram TS Rookie Posts: 178

    and use firewire if you can, it's alot faster.
  5. Godper

    Godper TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for these answers.

    Which enclosure might be an easy fit for my drive. Longevity/durabilty isnt really an issue. I'd just like to be able to get it up and running long enough to back it up properly. :blush:

    Is there a minimum or maximum size that I need to look out for?
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    yes. This is one of the most common uses for old HDDs. Kits are ubiquitous.
  7. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,966   +2,524

    If that's all you want to do......

    Sit it on a table, connect it to the PC you want the files on, by plugging it to the IDE and power buss, make a folder on the PC you want to copy to, select all the files on the drive, right click "copy" go to your new folder, then right click "paste".

    You must take precautions against "ESD" (static). It would be prudent to run a ground wire from the CASE on the HDD to bare metal on the host PC's case.

    Wear an anti-static wrist strap while doing any of this. Make sure the PC is off, by using the SWITCH on the power supply. if in doubt, unplug it.

    Tiger direct, Newegg, even Intel, have sections on their web sites for people repairing or building their computers.

    Feedback on this one? Anybody? Everybody?

    Or.... how about this thread:
  8. Stick'o ram

    Stick'o ram TS Rookie Posts: 178

    But that would require you to manualy have to reach in, unplug it, etc... Everytime you want to move it, not to mention it would not look very elegant.
  9. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    the biggest box you can find any ide/sata to usb adapter you can find
    with the external power supply
    like CC said just open your machine and copy /backup that way no fuss a little muss close case
    yer spending way to much thought on a temp issue
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,966   +2,524

    But, I thought he said........

    If this is just to get the files off the drive, it actually doesn't need to be elegant, does it?
  11. Stick'o ram

    Stick'o ram TS Rookie Posts: 178

    I thought he was in it for the long haul of making it a permant external drive, my mistake. Yea, that would work though, I always use a peice of cardboard when working with comp. parts.
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