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What do you use for temporarily externally mounting 3.5" SATA and IDE hard drives? When I'm in the field and just have a laptop with me, I'd like to be able to mount a client's drive to my laptop for data recovery, etc. Is a separate USB enclosure for SATA and IDE the best option? Any other ideas?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

I use the Newer Technology USB 2.0 Universal Drive Adapter. It's inexpensive, small, and works on IDE or SATA drives.

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Wow, very cool. You've had good experience with this? – jacobsee May 12 '09 at 18:06
Here's a review:… – jacobsee May 12 '09 at 18:37
Yes I've had good experiences with it. It's good for what it is designed for; temporary access to loose hard drives in the field. Small and cheap. – richardhoskins May 13 '09 at 4:09
We use a similar product and they work great. – Aaron May 13 '09 at 12:22

The ThermalTake BlacX, and other similar products, are very handy for temporarily mounting drives. No need to grab a screwdriver to open the external case, mess with power and SATA/IDE cables, etc. Just plug it in.

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I bought one of my clients a Drobo. It is sweet. Almost disappointingly easy to set up.

EDIT: Note, Drobo is SATA only. No IDE...

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You should take a look at WiebeTech. They offer many options for forensic recovery. Not the cheapest option, but they will give you a good idea of the features you might want to look for in other products.

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I swear by IcyDock's enclosures. Here's a SATA/IDE one.

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It is a pity there web site sucks... The frames are driving me nuts! – Zoredache May 12 '09 at 20:02

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