Posts Tagged ‘hard disk drives’

Romtec Trios – (HDD) Hard Disk Drive Selectors Part 2

Thursday, February 1st, 2007
Posted in Hardware · Tags:

Romtec Trios RX910T6

Romtec Trios RX910T6

Select between three IDE hard drives with push-in button interface. Before you turn on the computer, you press the button of the hard drive you wish to use. This "pops" out the button for the other hard drive previously selected. If you have kids its possible they could press all three buttons and get them stuck down, although I never tested that. I did test it with two buttons depressed and it allowed you to do that, but pressing the third button popped them both out. However, only one HDD can be selected. The Trios has a built in system protection switch that won’t let you switch drives while the computer is running. There is a green LED to the left of the button that is depressed, so that you can tell from a distance what drive is being used. Only put one hard drive per IDE cable coming off the Trios.

Trios

The old Romtec website states:

“TRIOS is compatible with any IDE hard drive and all system processors above Pentium I. There is no limit to capacity, size, speed or manufacturer as long as the BIOS supports the drives. TRIOS supports the following speeds: (ATA/33, ATA/66, ATA/100).”

Pros: Easy selection between three hard drives.

Cons: Each hard drive gets power and very warm. You have to have an IDE cable for each drive; thus, you end up with four IDE cables hooked into the Trios (even if you use rounded IDE cables, it still takes up a lot of space and is a mess). It takes up a 5 ½ " bay.

Romtec Trios


(HDD) Hard Disk Drive Selectors

NickLock – (HDD) Hard Disk Drive Selectors Part 1

Wednesday, January 31st, 2007
Posted in Hardware · Tags:

Do you want to switch between different OSes and keep them completely isolated? Want to be able to not worry about viruses infecting all of them, or a hard drive crash taking down a multi-boot machine, or having to configure any software? Hard drive selectors are great for setting up one computer to function with several roles. You can setup one drive for your important data, another for testing, and another for games. By doing this you can tweak the OS for better performance for whatever task you have in mind. In the following mini-series of reviews I cover four hard drive selectors (three of which I have owned) and then talk about other alternatives, in case you cannot find one of these devices.

NickLock
NickLock

Select between two hard drives with a key. Switch it to what drive you wish to use and then power on the computer. The principal here is that the key changes what drive gets the master jumper setting (the other drive not selected won’t get a jumper setting so it shouldn’t show up in BIOS, just make sure in BIOS you have it auto-detect your hard drives). It works with all hard drives and you can mix any brand except Western Digital. If you want to use Western Digital you have to have two of them and then put them on one IDE cable and set the jumper cables on the slave setting. This has to do with the fact that Western Digital HDDs will default to master if they don’t have any jumper setting.

NickLock Manual

There was an article online about how to make your own device like this, but it was taken down due to NickLock’s patent on this procedure. However the company doesn’t seem to be around anymore, probably because it never sold well enough.

NickLock Complete Package

Pros:

  • Only takes up a 3½" bay.
  • You can set it to not use any drive so your computer won’t be tampered with (assuming you have the case locked up so no one can open it as well).
  • Very inexpensive (around $15-$20, although they are no longer made).

Cons:

  • Only two hard drive selections.
  • It won’t work if you use a Western Digital hard drive and another type of hard drive.
  • Each hard drive still gets power and very warm.

NickLock


(HDD) Hard Disk Drive Selectors