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I've got a spare drive, and thinking about using it to keep as an internal bootable backup to replace my current external bootable backup. It would free up an external drive, and a usb port.

Is there a strong case to be made against keeping a bootable backup inside the case vs. outside? (There are other backups of this data, stored off-site, so it's not the only backup).

Like, if there was some sort of 'electrical event' inside the computer, would I run a higher risk of frying the drive on the SATA port, as opposed to the drive on the USB port?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

I would personally have an external drive for backup.

Here are the reasons why:

  • If the backup drive is internal and the power supply fails in the PC, it can short everything out. I've seen it before where it has fried the motherboard and hard drive (I work in IT).
  • Easily take it elsewhere. For example, you could keep it at work so if anything happens at home (natural disaster, fire, etc.) you still have a backup of the data.

However, if the drive is external (e.g. USB) and it is plugged into a broken port, it can short it out and essentially lose all data on it. This happens a lot with USB flash drives. I haven't seen it with an external hard drive yet.

It really depends on what you're backing up and how often you're going to backup along with how many backups you want to keep.

I use Windows Home Server for my backup and sharing of files over the network. It currently has 3 PCs and one Mac Mini connected to it. It backs them all up automatically (Time Machine on Mac and Windows Home Server Console on Windows) and it is great!

Hope this helps :)

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an electrical event inside the computer is more dangerous to an internal disk. even if your home gets a lightning bolt there is more chance to the external to survive.

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External. Only power it up when you make a backup. You can buy two and keep one offsite somewhere and rotate them.

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