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I'm looking for a 7200 rmp drive for my dell inspiron, which one do you guys suggest?

Is installation fairly trivial?

I have 2gb ram, would it be worthwile to get 4gb? I want to run virtualbox so I figured more RAM wouldn't hurt, but not sure what kind of ram a laptop would take.

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4 Answers

For what it's worth I've recently installed a 2.5" Seagate 7200.4 500GB Momentus (ST9500420ASG) in a two year old Dell M1330. It's a pretty decent hard drive for a laptop - average transfer rate from HDTach is around 85MB/sec, scores 5.9 on the Win 7 Experience hard drive index.

I certainly have no complaints, it's noticeably faster than the original drive I had which was the not too shabby 200GB Momentus 7200.2. That put in an HDTach average transfer rate of around 55Meg/sec and scored a Windows Experience hard drive index of 5.4.

If you want to find the correct RAM for an upgrade then use one of the memory manufacturers's configuration tools to find the correct modules - here's Corsair's page for the 1720 but you can find equivalents for Kingston and others if you browse around. You should check what modules you already have installed because you only have two SODIMM slots in the 1720 and they may already be populated.

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Installing a new hard drive is fairly easy, especially if it's the non-system drive...however, since it's a laptop, this is probably not the case. There are programs out there that transfer data from one HDD to another, but you should probably install a fresh copy of Windows on the new drive...

HDD installation guide for Dell Inspiron 1720

Your Dell Inspiron 1720 can support 4GB RAM max, but if you're looking into running VirtualBox, then I would recommend it. Consider running a 64-bit version of Windows to go with it...

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Your 1720 may support 2 drives, it would be worth your while to open the underside and check the bay to see if you can support 2. If so, I would definitely consider getting a second drive to hold your Virtual hard drives, etc.

Beyond that, I like the Western Digital Scorpio Black line, and the Seagate Momentus 7200.4 drives are excellent as well. Pick whatever size and price fits your budget.

Also, if you are doing virtualization - definitely get the additional RAM. To take full advantage of it you will need to have a 64-bit operating system though.

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If you're looking for new RAM I would reccomend going to Cruical.com, their online system scanner will tell you exactly what type of RAM you need and what your motherboard will support. They'll also flog you the memory although i suggest looking around for a better price.

Goyuix is right, the 1720 comes with an optional 2nd HDD bay next to the primary HDD bay. Obviously only you know if both are active but if they are then I'd go for: An SSD drive in the primary bay, use this for programs and the OS. This should do it http://www.crucial.com/store/mpartspecs.aspx?mtbpoid=9C00AE1EA5CA7304 A secondary drive for data and virtual hard drives, the one Helvick mentioned seems great.

Oh and by the way I'm not a crucial salesman, i was on the site checking the RAM issue out and thought to look for an SSD for your model Laptop ;-)

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