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I want to buy an external disk.

  1. If I install my OS on it, will I get the same performance as the internal disk?

  2. Is there any way to use a SATA HDD as a removable disk via USB?

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What OS? Windows for one (a normal, non-PE version at least) will not even install it on a removable drive (for what should be obvious reasons). – Synetech Sep 15 '13 at 4:31
up vote 5 down vote accepted

for the first part, no. You will probably be able to get acceptable performance from it, but USB is nowhere near sata speeds - it WILL probably be fast enough to run an OS for basic purposes tho.

for the second part, you can get a sata (or ide) to usb converter of some sort, a drive enclosure or a dock.

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External drive enclosures run as little as $10. If you have an eSata port, you can get close to (but not match) internal performance. – Joel Coehoorn Jun 26 '11 at 17:25
eSata implimentations vary. some of the ones i've seen are simple brackets to a onboard sata port - these SHOULD be as fast, methinks. – Journeyman Geek Jun 27 '11 at 0:44

First that is a bad idea external storage is in reliable and relatively expansive over in-case hard drives. plus what happens if the USB unplugs from your computer. in addition if you still feel the need to do so it should work.

external disks are for file back-ups and file storing internal disks are for OS's and file storage and SATA is much faster and more reliable and will not randomly unplug because someone tripped over a cord.

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No I will not suggest you to install the OS on an eternal disk you will get the medium and may be lower performance. The external disk is only for transferring data if you want to connect it through USB. As @Taylor said, if USB unplugs or lose in any situation and you are in the middle or at the finish moment of your work all will be lost.

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Unless you're using an eSATA disk, USB speed is not anywhere near SATA speed or even IDE speed

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