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I recently built my own computer, and I wanted to put my laptop hard drive in my desktop, possibly to do a RAID 0 or 1 (haven't decided yet). Is this even possible, or is it possible with an adapter cable?

I know the drive is only 2.5", but I can find a way of putting in to the 3.5" slot in my case if it will actually work.

The laptop hard drive is the default one that comes with the Toshiba Satellite A660 (500 GB, 7200 RPM).

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

It is possible. Older PATA drives requite an adapter from '40 pins IDE = Power lines' to '44 pins combined power and PATA'. Newer SATA drives use the same interface and no converter is needed.

However: Most RAID configuration require more of less identical hardware. A 500GB laptop drive and a 700GB desktop drive could be used as a 1GB drive (500GB +500GB with 200).

Also, if one drive is slower and you use mirroring you will slow the RAID down when writing.

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Well I was actually thinking about RAID 0, to improve performance. Would having an older drive (2 yrs) affect performance at all even though it spins at the same speed? – nathpilland Jul 19 '12 at 17:42
If you make a stripe (RAID0) then it depends on a a few things. E.g. the driver could fill disk 1 and then disk 2. No performance is gained. You just get a bigger virtual drive). Or it could spread data a across the drives, which should give you faster speed. Regardless of which method used, if either of the drives fails you loose all data. So make sure you have backups of the important stuff. (I will admit that I assumed RAID 1 - mirroring). I specified that in the post. It does not hold when striping. – Hennes Jul 19 '12 at 17:46
I do have an external hard drive I can use for backups. If I do end up going with RAID 0, would this mean I would have 1.5 TB of space (my desktop HD is 1TB) or would I be limited to the space on my smallest drive (500 GB) – nathpilland Jul 19 '12 at 17:56

Should be no problem at all. Google "2.5 to 3.5 drive bay adapter" for everything you will need. Costs less than $10.

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Could I also get something like this at a MicroCenter, Fry's, or BestBuy? I'd rather not pay for shipping and wait a week for it... – nathpilland Jul 19 '12 at 17:43
Yes. - - - - - - - – Dave Becker Jul 19 '12 at 21:23

Yes. Adaptor kits can be found on any computer parts website and usually for less than $10US (for example this one.)

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I read somewhere that this is possible without an adapter (SATA connectors are adapted directly on the drive to be used with a laptop) and that the adapter can be removed on the hard drive... Does this happen or is that just some internet BS? – nathpilland Jul 19 '12 at 17:32
You likely could do that, but it wouldn't be a whole lot of fun. – Andrew Lambert Jul 19 '12 at 17:42

Because SSD drives come only in 2.5" form factor, many cases now come with the adapters included or with a drive location specifically for 2.5" drives. If not, 2.5-to-3.5 adapters are not hard to find online.

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Okay great, this will make it easier to hold it in the case rather than trying to do something myself. Thanks! – nathpilland Jul 19 '12 at 17:43

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