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Of Dell laptops & new HDDs (& iTunes)...

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A year or two ago I bought my wife a (cheap) Dell laptop which she uses mainly for surfing & her iTunes (& photos that we store on an external drive). I had to re-install windows a while ago & that went reasonably smoothly (though putting iTunes back on was a bit of a faff).


Last week she had one of those "episodes" where a website tells her that she's got a virus & that she needs to download & install a virus checker (which she didn't), but as her laptop's been running a bit slowly recently & it was complaining that it had run out of space, I'm thinking of replacing her 24Gig c: drive with a somewhat larger one (I was thinking of something from ~£40 for a ~160Gig to ~£70 for a 320 Gig drive). What is slightly concerning me is that I remember when I was at uni (~11 years ago now), I remember my housemate's Dell desktop didn't want to be upgraded (though IIRC that was either a cpu or gfx card), is this likely to be an issue for my wife's laptop?

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Harddisks shouldn't give you any problems. As long as you figure out whether it needs a sata or pata drive. :D


With desktops, CPU's can give problems mostly because the mainboards are OEM and specified for only a small number of processors. They won't support a lot of models. And graphics cards can give you some issues because the power supplies are not that 'heavy', and could leave you with an underpowered system quite easily when you put in a higher end card. That's about it.


None of those are true for harddisks, though. You should be OK :)

Edited by Timotheus
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You could always buy an external USB Harddisk & use it like that? A nice medium to stock up pictures, video's etc.


I recently bought one of 1.5 TB (1500 gig) for 119 euro. Prices differ but in general they're quiet cheap atm.





Chareos Rantras

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Before you buy one however, do check whether it's an IDE or a SATA... If it's only a year old it should be SATA, but should is only useful until you get the drive out and find out you're wrong.


Other than that should be no problem, any 2.5" (6.35cm) drive should fit in it fine.


An external would work as well, however if she's running out of room on the drive she'll still be running out of room unless you can transfer a lot of the stuff off.


Just also remember, when you swap the drive you're going to have to go through reinstalling iTunes again. :P

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DEll's have proprietry motherboards and cases that are dimensions from the industry standard sizes. Other than that they tend to use stock items for everything else. Since Hard drives are all the same size this should be an easy upgrade but the external drive sounds like a great idea too... then when she upgrades the entire system her music and pics will be instantly moved to the new system

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That being said, a 24GB harddrive is pretty small.

Could you give us some info on what programs etc are installed? Because if the 24GB is enough just for the programs, I'd just go with an external drive and save yourself the hassle :P

There are 2,5" laptopstyle external drives around, and they don't even need to be plugged into a wall socket to work: they just use USB power.

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Thanks for the advice guys. Her laptop's more like 3 years old (& it was fairly cheap then ~£350) so it'll be a PATA drive. I might whip off the cover tonight or tomorrow morning to check the size of the drive, but I'm sure it'll be a 2.5" job.


We do already have an external drive (for a copy of her music & our photos), but for some reason her install of iTunes doesn't seem to be happy using the external drive (and TBH, I'd probably prefer her stuff to be internal anyway)...

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