Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB Review

gotdamojo06 - 2008-02-02 10:02:03 in Storage / Hard Drives
Category: Storage / Hard Drives
Reviewed by: gotdamojo06   
Reviewed on: February 26, 2008
Price: $300

Introduction:

In this new day and age of computer data and digital media, it is not uncommon to have a file that is close to or exceeding the 1GB marker. These files can be anything nowadays, and you may be getting concerned while you watch the usage percentage of your hard drive nearing 100% full. What options do you have other than going out and buying a new hard drive that you would then have to open up your computer to install? Maxtor has released a new line of external hard drives that have a very large storage capacities. With 500gigabytes and up considered large drives, this seems like a logical place to start. 500,750, and now 1000 gigabytes( 1 Terabyte) sizes are now available. The Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB is an external hard drive that can offer some extra storage space for your system. Let's take a look and see how this solution compares to a regular internal hard drive that you could purchase.

 

Closer Look:

Taking a look at the box of the OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB external hard drive, you can see that it is loaded with a bunch of features such as having a massive storage capacity of 1TB or 1,000GB! Not only is this beast of an external hard drive able to store a lot of data, it can transfer the data from your computer to the OneTouch 4 Plus via two different and common ways: USB 2.0 and FireWire 400. Enough looking at the box, I know that I want to see what the device looks like and see how big it is.

 

 

 

 

 

Upon opening up the box, you can tell that Maxtor wanted to keep the Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB external hard drive very safe during the shipping process; it is wrapped in a cloth bag as well as placed in a molded plastic packaging to protect it from shipping damages. All of the accessories for the OneTouch 4 Plus are placed in their own plastic bags. All of the stickers holding the bags closed say "Save your life" which I found fairly amusing. Maxtor took very good care of this product for the shipping process.

 

Also included in the box is an instruction booklet that includes "Three steps to saving your life" as Maxtor wanted to call it. Also there is an install CD for the backup application that is bundled with the OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB external hard drive.

 

When you finally take the OneTouch 4 Plus out of all of its packaging, you are able to see how futuristic and simple this drive looks. The sides of the drive are a stainless steel looking color and texture while the rest of it is a vivid black color with a white power indication light on the front.

 

I'm very impressed by the looks of this drive, I am very curious to see how it works and what the software's GUI looks like, so lets get to it.

 

Installation:

The Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB External hard drive has two different ways that it is able to connect to your computer, which makes this external hard drive very versatile between different setups and can be customized for your favorite way to transfer data at high speeds. The two interfaces that it takes advantage of are USB 2.0 and FireWire 400. All of the data connectors are located on the lower back section of the drive, there are two for the FireWire connections and one for the USB connector. Not only do you need to plug in the data connectors, you also need to connect a power adapter to the drive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After you have decided which data cable you are going to use, you are ready to plug it into your computer. Once you do this, you will need to wait while Windows locates the "appropriate drivers" for your device. Once this has happened, an auto play dialog will display and you can then install the software that came with the OneTouch 4 Plus. If you cancel out of the autoplay dialog, you can use Windows Explorer to locate the "Launch" program located on the device and begin from there. Mostly all of the installation of this software is by following the on screen dialogs.

When you navigate to "My Computer" you can see that the OneTouch 4 Plus Drive is installed and has 931GB of free space on the drive before you are able to put anything on it. The drive comes pre-loaded with different drivers, guides, End User Licensing Agreements, and the application installation files.

 

Once you have the installation application started, you need to select which language you wish to install, once you have selected the language you are greeted with the main menu where you can select what you wish to do. I selected to install the Maxtor OneTouch software.

 

The next screen is just letting you know what software you are about to install, all you need to do here is select the next button. After that you need to select which Country you are installing this software.

 

That screen is followed by the End User Licensing Agreement, which you can read and then select the Yes button to agree. Then you need to select where you wish to have the software installed on your computer. I just let it install to the default path.

 

Once the installer has completed installing the program, you are asked if you wish to register at this time, you can always do this later from the main screen on the CD's autoplay sequence. You will need to restart your computer after this part for the installation to complete.

 

The next steps will be covered in the configuration section. I will let you guys know that while your computer is stating up you may want to take your CD out of your drive. The CD has the capability to be a boot disk, which has a screen where you can restore your files once you have backed them up. Just to make everything go smoothly, take the CD out before you turn your computer off.

Configuration:

When your computer comes back from its restart, there is a new open application that is located in the taskbars icon section, the Maxtor Manager icon. You are now ready to get the software you just installed configured to backup your entire hard drive or just specific files or folders on your hard drive. I will guide you through the different screens that you will encounter during the process of setting up your backup plan.

The first screen that you encounter is the main screen showing the different drives that this software can back files up to. When you click into the settings button on this screen you will see a list of different settings you can change for your actual device not just only on the software end.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Under the "Customize OneTouch Button" option, you are able to change what happens when you push the lighted button on the front of the OneTouch drive, the default option is that it will run a backup sequence. Under the "Adjust Power Settings" option, you are able to dictate how long it will take before your drive goes into a power-saving mode.

 

The next option in the list is "Test My Drive". This option will allow you to test to make sure that the drive has no faults and is functioning properly. The last option is "Check for Software Updates" which is pretty much self-explanatory, you are able to check for updates here and set the setting for the software to automatically check.

 

The next page is the Backup page. Under this page you are able to choose if you wish to create a backup plan and if you do, if you wish for it to be a simple plan or a custom plan. When you choose an option, you are able to name your plan.

 

Once you have a plan started, you are able to change the settings from within the backup page, or you can restore the files you have backed up, or you could even delete this plan. You enter a three step setup when you choose to edit the settings. The first step is which folder(s) you wish to have backed up.

 

The next step is which types of files inside of the folders you chose. You can do this a few ways, either by choosing all files, common documents (music, photos, videos, etc.), or by choosing which file extension you wish to have backed up (.exe, .jpg, .msi, etc.). The final step is to decide which days you wish to have this plan auto run and at which time you wish for it to run.

 

The last three screens are Sync, Safety, and Security. Sync is where you are able to synchronize the drive with other computers when you have connected it to another one. Safety is where you are able to have a copy of your entire hard drive saved on the OneTouch drive. Security is where you are able to add encryption to your files that are saved on the drive.

 

Specifications:

 

I'm getting very anxious to see how this drive performs against the Seagate FreeAgent Pro, so enough of the settings and configuration, lets get down and dirty with the testing!

Testing:

After the Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB External Hard drive was setup, I found myself amazed at the software that was bundled with the device, however I was wondering how the actual drive performed. It is time to get down to business and see some impressive numbers from this drive, or at least what I hope to be some impressive numbers. To test the OneTouch, I will be using HD Tune for a benchmark, SiSoftware Sandra Professional XIIc and using the Overclockersclub standard set of test files to put it up against some real world testing.

Testing Setup:

 

Comparison Drives:

 

Benchmarks:

 

HDTune:

Well, enough waiting, let's get started with the testing and see how all of these drives compare. I will start off by running HD Tune on all of the drives, let's see how it compares.

 

SiSoft Sandra:

The next benchmarking software that I am going to use is SisSoftware Sandra Profesional XIIc's File Systems and Physical Disk benchmarks.

 

The next group of tests that I am going to be performing on these drives are a real world transfer of three different files. They are all different sizes (10MB. 100MB, and 500MB). I will calculate how long it takes these files to transfer from one location to the other final destination.

 

Conclusion:

While comparing the Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1TB to the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 1TB models, it did just about the same if not quite as good in just about all of the different benchmarks that it was thrown up against. The OneTouch 4 Plus was unable to compete with the internal hard drive, which is to be expected due to the fact that no matter how the device was attached to the computer, it had to run through some sort of bus. I was very surprised that it did as good as it did against the other drives, but at the same time I was not surprised. Like I mentioned before, I expected my internal hard drive to out-perform the the OneTouch 4 drive, however I did expect the OneTouch drive to come closer than it did to the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 1TB drive. I can safely say that I would suggest getting this piece of hardware to expand the capacity of your setup due to the results that I got when testing it, as well as the added value of the backup software that is bundled with the drive.

 

Pros:

 

Cons: