Buying a Computer Hard Drive

A computer hard drive is one of the most critical components of a computer, following closely behind your CPU and motherboard. A hard drive permantely stores your operating system, programs, and other data so that it can be accessed at anytime. There are quite a few hard drives for sale, varying in size, speed, and brand, so it is important to find the right computer hard drive to reduce the amount of time you'll have to find a hard drive upgrade.

With the wide variety of computer hard drives it may hard to find the perfect hard drive for your system. There are hard drives that would be better for gaming, video editing, listening to music or just general usage. Since there is such a wide variety of computer hard drives to choose from there are a few factors you can use to narrow down your search.


Factors to Consider When Buying a Computer Hard Drive

1. Budget

Along with other computer components, your budget is the most important thing to consider when buying a hard drive. If you are building a new system from scratch you need to figure out your over all budget then divide it between different parts depending on what is most important for your computer. If you are just looking for a hard drive upgrade then determine the max amount you will spend for a hard drive. It is important to do this before you even look at what hard drives are aviable, otherwise you'll have a tough time searching through all the new hard drives. Hard drives are constantly being made bigger and better so you won't always need the biggest and fastest available. Since hard drives are always being upgraded and will be replaced a little more often than a CPU or motherboard, they will usually be a little cheaper.

2. Purpose

Next, after you determine budget, consider what the hard drive will be used for. What will be put on the computer hard drive? Often it will be a operating system and different programs. If you edit movies, take lots of digital photos, play games, or listen to music files on your PC, a big, fast internal Parallel or Serial ATA hard drive can dramatically improve your overall computing experience. If, however, it is just for general usuage you probably won't need such a big one.

Sometimes people will actually buy two hard drives, one for your operating system and the other for extra programs and games. This will make booting and rebooting much much faster. It will also make it easier if you ever have to reformat your operating system. Usually the operating system only needs a small hard drive, but your other one may be large for storing games, music, and so on.

It is very imporant that you plan for future usuage. The more empty space on your hard drive the better it will run. So not only plan for what your are putting on the hard drive now but will be on it later as well. If you are just planning on surfing the web and using different Office programs you won't have as much to worry about. Generally a 300 GB drive will suffice for general usage. If you store lots of audio or video though, you will be constantly adding more and may consider a 750 GB or 1 TB drive.

3. Components

After you figure out these other two things, it becomes time to actually look at hard drives. First off, you need to find a hard drive that is compatible with your other computer components. If you have picked a case or already have a case you need to make sure you have room for the particular hard drive you choose, especially if you want to have two hard drives. Not all cases have room to mount two hard drives. You may or may not have a power supply ready to go but you need to make sure that this will be powerful enough to support your hard drive and other components.

There are many other things you couuld consider when buying a new hard drive or looking for a hard drive upgrade but these will definely get you started and may be all you need. It is not too entirely hard, but if you are unsure about your choice read the reviews. People are usually very inclined to put there comments on something they spend hard earned money on.