Discussion:
Can you tell if an external USB drive has a SATA inside?
(too old to reply)
mike
2018-03-25 08:07:52 UTC
Permalink
Can you tell if an external USB drive has a SATA inside?

I've been buying used 2.5" external hard drives and sticking
the enclosed drive into SATA laptops.
Last two WD drives had the USB connector directly on the drive
and were useless for that purpose.

Is there a way to tell without opening the case?
The USB drive boxes were 4-3/8" long. That's barely longer
than the drive and suggests integrated USB, but they're
also slightly wider.

Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Nil
2018-03-25 08:32:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by mike
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
--
----Android NewsGroup Reader----
http://usenet.sinaapp.com/
mike
2018-03-25 08:44:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Nil
Post by mike
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal
workings in a customer specification. Most don't.
And it's hard to do at a garage sale.
Mike S
2018-03-25 08:58:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by mike
Post by Nil
Post by mike
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal
workings in a customer specification.  Most don't.
And it's hard to do at a garage sale.
It's amazing how much information you can find online. And cell phones
are quite good at accessing it. Even at garage sales.
mike
2018-03-25 18:39:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mike S
Post by mike
Post by Nil
Post by mike
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal
workings in a customer specification. Most don't.
And it's hard to do at a garage sale.
It's amazing how much information you can find online. And cell phones
are quite good at accessing it. Even at garage sales.
The cost of cell service is WAY more than I'd save by having the
data. In this case, when the answer would be almost impossible to
find, it's a non-starter.
Mike S
2018-03-25 08:58:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by mike
Post by Nil
Post by mike
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal
workings in a customer specification.  Most don't.
And it's hard to do at a garage sale.
screwdriver?
VanguardLH
2018-03-25 11:19:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by Nil
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure? People at
garage sales get testy when you start taking their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal workings in a
customer specification. Most don't. And it's hard to do at a garage
sale.
But then you won't be toting a desktop PC or laptop to the garage sale,
either, since you apparently won't be toting a smartphone on which to
use a web browser. Just what were you going to use to test the USB
drive to see if there was SATA behind the USB port? If you're going to
tote a laptop around, why wouldn't you also be toting a smartphone or
just use the laptop for an Internet connection. Garage sales rarely
provide wi-fi connections so a smartphone with its cellular data service
would give you the Internet to lookup the product's brand and model.

Although the reseller may not reveal the internals of their product,
quite often you can find online where users have opened the cases to see
what is inside. Even some review sites open the cases to report what
they found inside. For example:


(WD My Passport Ultra USB portable drive)

All we know is you got a WD *drive*. You never said what brand and
model of portable drive (inside a case) that you got that had a direct
USB port on the drive's PCB. The above video shows you don't what that
brand and model. The USB-to-SATA adapter is built into the drive's PCB.

If the enclosure is only 1/8" larger, especially for length, than the
2.5" drive then there is no room for a USB-to-SATA adapter board that
plugs into the drive. Some more online searching for the WD10JMVW model
the Youtube author found in his portable drive was found at:

https://www.hdsentinel.com/storageinfo_details.php?lang=en&model=WDC%20WD10JMVW

Notice the *drive* specs say "Disk Interface: USB 3.0". If the case is
a hard skin surrounding the drive (its dimensions are barely larger than
the drive) then there's no room for an adapter PCB inside the case. The
above Youtube video was for the WD Passport Ultra. Well, the WD
Passport Slim uses a case that is a hard skin around the drive, so it
also has the USB 3.0 host interface directly on the drive. See:

https://thepcenthusiast.com/wd-my-passport-slim-1tb-review/

Yet it almost looks like a very skinny adapter was slid onto the drive's
SATA connectors. However, as I watched the following video, nope, looks
like the USB port and the USB IC chip are built into the drive's PCB.




The maker purposed their product according to where they want to market
it. You want to repurpose their product. Sometimes that fails and the
risk you take trying to go super cheap with the wrong product. Since
you're buying at a garage sale, you are getting something that is used
with unknown reliability, unknown defects, and unknown use and abuse.
If the USB drive works as a USB drive then you're money isn't wasted.
If it isn't usable as a SATA drive after breaking open the case is the
risk you take but if you carefully open the case (so it can be closed
again) then you still have a usable USB drive for which that product was
originally purposed.

Why not instead focus on buying used 2.5" HDD/SDD SATA drives? If they
don't show up often enough at garage sales, there are computer fairs,
like at the state fair grounds or some hall or armory, and swap meets.
There's Craigslist, eBay (which you could search for low mailing cost or
just for local sales), and many e-tailers sell off returns or
refurbished equipment.

The USB-to-SATA interface PCB inside the case means all you can see from
the outside is it is a USB device. The internals are hidden because
that's the point of the USB-to-SATA logic board to adapts one hardware
protocol to a different hardware protocol.
mike
2018-03-25 19:07:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by VanguardLH
Post by Nil
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure? People at
garage sales get testy when you start taking their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal workings in a
customer specification. Most don't. And it's hard to do at a garage
sale.
But then you won't be toting a desktop PC or laptop to the garage sale,
either, since you apparently won't be toting a smartphone on which to
use a web browser. Just what were you going to use to test the USB
drive to see if there was SATA behind the USB port? If you're going to
tote a laptop around, why wouldn't you also be toting a smartphone or
just use the laptop for an Internet connection. Garage sales rarely
provide wi-fi connections so a smartphone with its cellular data service
would give you the Internet to lookup the product's brand and model.
Although the reseller may not reveal the internals of their product,
quite often you can find online where users have opened the cases to see
what is inside. Even some review sites open the cases to report what
http://youtu.be/DBenRlPzb_s
(WD My Passport Ultra USB portable drive)
All we know is you got a WD *drive*. You never said what brand and
model of portable drive (inside a case) that you got that had a direct
USB port on the drive's PCB. The above video shows you don't what that
brand and model. The USB-to-SATA adapter is built into the drive's PCB.
If the enclosure is only 1/8" larger, especially for length, than the
2.5" drive then there is no room for a USB-to-SATA adapter board that
plugs into the drive. Some more online searching for the WD10JMVW model
https://www.hdsentinel.com/storageinfo_details.php?lang=en&model=WDC%20WD10JMVW
Notice the *drive* specs say "Disk Interface: USB 3.0". If the case is
a hard skin surrounding the drive (its dimensions are barely larger than
the drive) then there's no room for an adapter PCB inside the case. The
above Youtube video was for the WD Passport Ultra. Well, the WD
Passport Slim uses a case that is a hard skin around the drive, so it
https://thepcenthusiast.com/wd-my-passport-slim-1tb-review/
Yet it almost looks like a very skinny adapter was slid onto the drive's
SATA connectors. However, as I watched the following video, nope, looks
like the USB port and the USB IC chip are built into the drive's PCB.
http://youtu.be/DG4MpTnhm4E
http://youtu.be/jP-pl0opB7w
The maker purposed their product according to where they want to market
it. You want to repurpose their product. Sometimes that fails and the
risk you take trying to go super cheap with the wrong product. Since
you're buying at a garage sale, you are getting something that is used
with unknown reliability, unknown defects, and unknown use and abuse.
If the USB drive works as a USB drive then you're money isn't wasted.
If it isn't usable as a SATA drive after breaking open the case is the
risk you take but if you carefully open the case (so it can be closed
again) then you still have a usable USB drive for which that product was
originally purposed.
Why not instead focus on buying used 2.5" HDD/SDD SATA drives? If they
don't show up often enough at garage sales, there are computer fairs,
like at the state fair grounds or some hall or armory, and swap meets.
There's Craigslist, eBay (which you could search for low mailing cost or
just for local sales), and many e-tailers sell off returns or
refurbished equipment.
The USB-to-SATA interface PCB inside the case means all you can see from
the outside is it is a USB device. The internals are hidden because
that's the point of the USB-to-SATA logic board to adapts one hardware
protocol to a different hardware protocol.
You're great at restating the problem in different context
and pushing solutions that
are outside the parameters of the discussion.

But I'll play...
Repeat the above internet process on a tiny phone screen in bright sunlight.
How long would that take you?
I wear a motorcycle helmet and pretend I can't hear people that have
something they think is clever to say. If I talked
to everybody who wanted to chat, I'd get to half as many sales in a day.
But I digress...
How much data would that consume?
Repeat that every time you have a question.
What about the >$480/year that phone service would cost you?

You and I have VERY different definitions of "cheap".
Normally, I'd just buy the drive for a buck. But I'd probably
pay two if I were sure it would be SATA inside.

I asked a very simple question. Your answer was, "I don't know."
A more effective action for all is to just hit "next" on your newsreader.
VanguardLH
2018-03-25 22:16:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by mike
Post by VanguardLH
Post by Nil
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure? People at
garage sales get testy when you start taking their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal workings in a
customer specification. Most don't. And it's hard to do at a garage
sale.
But then you won't be toting a desktop PC or laptop to the garage sale,
either, since you apparently won't be toting a smartphone on which to
use a web browser. Just what were you going to use to test the USB
drive to see if there was SATA behind the USB port? If you're going to
tote a laptop around, why wouldn't you also be toting a smartphone or
just use the laptop for an Internet connection. Garage sales rarely
provide wi-fi connections so a smartphone with its cellular data service
would give you the Internet to lookup the product's brand and model.
Although the reseller may not reveal the internals of their product,
quite often you can find online where users have opened the cases to see
what is inside. Even some review sites open the cases to report what
http://youtu.be/DBenRlPzb_s
(WD My Passport Ultra USB portable drive)
All we know is you got a WD *drive*. You never said what brand and
model of portable drive (inside a case) that you got that had a direct
USB port on the drive's PCB. The above video shows you don't what that
brand and model. The USB-to-SATA adapter is built into the drive's PCB.
If the enclosure is only 1/8" larger, especially for length, than the
2.5" drive then there is no room for a USB-to-SATA adapter board that
plugs into the drive. Some more online searching for the WD10JMVW model
https://www.hdsentinel.com/storageinfo_details.php?lang=en&model=WDC%20WD10JMVW
Notice the *drive* specs say "Disk Interface: USB 3.0". If the case is
a hard skin surrounding the drive (its dimensions are barely larger than
the drive) then there's no room for an adapter PCB inside the case. The
above Youtube video was for the WD Passport Ultra. Well, the WD
Passport Slim uses a case that is a hard skin around the drive, so it
https://thepcenthusiast.com/wd-my-passport-slim-1tb-review/
Yet it almost looks like a very skinny adapter was slid onto the drive's
SATA connectors. However, as I watched the following video, nope, looks
like the USB port and the USB IC chip are built into the drive's PCB.
http://youtu.be/DG4MpTnhm4E
http://youtu.be/jP-pl0opB7w
The maker purposed their product according to where they want to market
it. You want to repurpose their product. Sometimes that fails and the
risk you take trying to go super cheap with the wrong product. Since
you're buying at a garage sale, you are getting something that is used
with unknown reliability, unknown defects, and unknown use and abuse.
If the USB drive works as a USB drive then you're money isn't wasted.
If it isn't usable as a SATA drive after breaking open the case is the
risk you take but if you carefully open the case (so it can be closed
again) then you still have a usable USB drive for which that product was
originally purposed.
Why not instead focus on buying used 2.5" HDD/SDD SATA drives? If they
don't show up often enough at garage sales, there are computer fairs,
like at the state fair grounds or some hall or armory, and swap meets.
There's Craigslist, eBay (which you could search for low mailing cost or
just for local sales), and many e-tailers sell off returns or
refurbished equipment.
The USB-to-SATA interface PCB inside the case means all you can see from
the outside is it is a USB device. The internals are hidden because
that's the point of the USB-to-SATA logic board to adapts one hardware
protocol to a different hardware protocol.
You're great at restating the problem in different context
and pushing solutions that
are outside the parameters of the discussion.
But I'll play...
Repeat the above internet process on a tiny phone screen in bright sunlight.
How long would that take you?
I wear a motorcycle helmet and pretend I can't hear people that have
something they think is clever to say. If I talked
to everybody who wanted to chat, I'd get to half as many sales in a day.
But I digress...
How much data would that consume?
Repeat that every time you have a question.
What about the >$480/year that phone service would cost you?
You and I have VERY different definitions of "cheap".
Normally, I'd just buy the drive for a buck. But I'd probably
pay two if I were sure it would be SATA inside.
I asked a very simple question. Your answer was, "I don't know."
A more effective action for all is to just hit "next" on your newsreader.
Conditions never stated in your original inquiry.

My answer showed that some very specify models (of WD) have an inbuilt
USB port instead of using a SATA-to-USB adapter. Guess you're too lazy
to note those two models to know not to get them at the garage sales. I
also gave guidance on how to do a search on other portable drives to
find reviews by other users that have opened up their portable drives.
Geez, how hard is it for you to use the Youtube app on your smartphone
to look for "<brand> <model> portable drive inside"?

Okay, you don't want to use your smartphone. What else did you figure
on toting to the garage sales to check what's inside the portable drive
sitting in a pile of electronics?

You asked if a USB drive can be detected to have a USB or SATA interface
on the drive's PCB. Just because you didn't like the answer doesn't
obviate my response was valid to your inquiry. You can't! Get over it.
You won't know unless you research or open the case to look. Obviously
you don't want to research.

Don't want to use your phone (to research on-the-fly). Don't want to do
the research ahead of time to find review showing what is inside of the
portable drives that would interest you. Don't want to tote along a
list of those brands and models of portable drives that have a USB
interface instead of SATA. Don't want to actually look at the case to
see if it is just a hard skin just slightly larger than the drive itself
(so there'd be no room for a SATA-to-USB adapter card inside).

All of this whining because you lost a dollar buying a portable drive
that has a USB interface instead of SATA. You're on the Internet so
it's already clear you have the money -- unless you're leeching the
Internet from someone else, like your parents. You buy a garage sale
portable drive, turns out to have a USB interface, you buy a few more,
and maybe 1 out of 4 is missing SATA. Gee, you lost a buck.
mike
2018-03-25 23:05:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by VanguardLH
Post by mike
Post by VanguardLH
Post by Nil
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure? People at
garage sales get testy when you start taking their stuff apart ;-)
Google the make/model number and check out the specs.
There's no reason for a vendor to disclose the internal workings in a
customer specification. Most don't. And it's hard to do at a garage
sale.
But then you won't be toting a desktop PC or laptop to the garage sale,
either, since you apparently won't be toting a smartphone on which to
use a web browser. Just what were you going to use to test the USB
drive to see if there was SATA behind the USB port? If you're going to
tote a laptop around, why wouldn't you also be toting a smartphone or
just use the laptop for an Internet connection. Garage sales rarely
provide wi-fi connections so a smartphone with its cellular data service
would give you the Internet to lookup the product's brand and model.
Although the reseller may not reveal the internals of their product,
quite often you can find online where users have opened the cases to see
what is inside. Even some review sites open the cases to report what
http://youtu.be/DBenRlPzb_s
(WD My Passport Ultra USB portable drive)
All we know is you got a WD *drive*. You never said what brand and
model of portable drive (inside a case) that you got that had a direct
USB port on the drive's PCB. The above video shows you don't what that
brand and model. The USB-to-SATA adapter is built into the drive's PCB.
If the enclosure is only 1/8" larger, especially for length, than the
2.5" drive then there is no room for a USB-to-SATA adapter board that
plugs into the drive. Some more online searching for the WD10JMVW model
https://www.hdsentinel.com/storageinfo_details.php?lang=en&model=WDC%20WD10JMVW
Notice the *drive* specs say "Disk Interface: USB 3.0". If the case is
a hard skin surrounding the drive (its dimensions are barely larger than
the drive) then there's no room for an adapter PCB inside the case. The
above Youtube video was for the WD Passport Ultra. Well, the WD
Passport Slim uses a case that is a hard skin around the drive, so it
https://thepcenthusiast.com/wd-my-passport-slim-1tb-review/
Yet it almost looks like a very skinny adapter was slid onto the drive's
SATA connectors. However, as I watched the following video, nope, looks
like the USB port and the USB IC chip are built into the drive's PCB.
http://youtu.be/DG4MpTnhm4E
http://youtu.be/jP-pl0opB7w
The maker purposed their product according to where they want to market
it. You want to repurpose their product. Sometimes that fails and the
risk you take trying to go super cheap with the wrong product. Since
you're buying at a garage sale, you are getting something that is used
with unknown reliability, unknown defects, and unknown use and abuse.
If the USB drive works as a USB drive then you're money isn't wasted.
If it isn't usable as a SATA drive after breaking open the case is the
risk you take but if you carefully open the case (so it can be closed
again) then you still have a usable USB drive for which that product was
originally purposed.
Why not instead focus on buying used 2.5" HDD/SDD SATA drives? If they
don't show up often enough at garage sales, there are computer fairs,
like at the state fair grounds or some hall or armory, and swap meets.
There's Craigslist, eBay (which you could search for low mailing cost or
just for local sales), and many e-tailers sell off returns or
refurbished equipment.
The USB-to-SATA interface PCB inside the case means all you can see from
the outside is it is a USB device. The internals are hidden because
that's the point of the USB-to-SATA logic board to adapts one hardware
protocol to a different hardware protocol.
You're great at restating the problem in different context
and pushing solutions that
are outside the parameters of the discussion.
But I'll play...
Repeat the above internet process on a tiny phone screen in bright sunlight.
How long would that take you?
I wear a motorcycle helmet and pretend I can't hear people that have
something they think is clever to say. If I talked
to everybody who wanted to chat, I'd get to half as many sales in a day.
But I digress...
How much data would that consume?
Repeat that every time you have a question.
What about the >$480/year that phone service would cost you?
You and I have VERY different definitions of "cheap".
Normally, I'd just buy the drive for a buck. But I'd probably
pay two if I were sure it would be SATA inside.
I asked a very simple question. Your answer was, "I don't know."
A more effective action for all is to just hit "next" on your newsreader.
Conditions never stated in your original inquiry.
My answer showed that some very specify models (of WD) have an inbuilt
USB port instead of using a SATA-to-USB adapter. Guess you're too lazy
to note those two models to know not to get them at the garage sales. I
also gave guidance on how to do a search on other portable drives to
find reviews by other users that have opened up their portable drives.
Geez, how hard is it for you to use the Youtube app on your smartphone
to look for "<brand> <model> portable drive inside"?
Okay, you don't want to use your smartphone. What else did you figure
on toting to the garage sales to check what's inside the portable drive
sitting in a pile of electronics?
I'd like to take knowledge from this newsgroup about any tips
to look for without taking it apart. It's right there in the
subject line. If there are any telltale signs that I haven't
already disclosed, you could just state them. If you don't
know any, so be it, thanks for reading, click next and be done with the
topic. If I wanted to know how to pay ~$480/year to click the icon for
google,
I'd have asked THAT question.
Post by VanguardLH
You asked if a USB drive can be detected to have a USB or SATA interface
on the drive's PCB. Just because you didn't like the answer doesn't
obviate my response was valid to your inquiry. You can't! Get over it.
You won't know unless you research or open the case to look. Obviously
you don't want to research.
Don't want to use your phone (to research on-the-fly). Don't want to do
the research ahead of time to find review showing what is inside of the
portable drives that would interest you. Don't want to tote along a
list of those brands and models of portable drives that have a USB
interface instead of SATA. Don't want to actually look at the case to
see if it is just a hard skin just slightly larger than the drive itself
(so there'd be no room for a SATA-to-USB adapter card inside).
All of this whining because you lost a dollar buying a portable drive
that has a USB interface instead of SATA. You're on the Internet so
it's already clear you have the money -- unless you're leeching the
Internet from someone else, like your parents. You buy a garage sale
portable drive, turns out to have a USB interface, you buy a few more,
and maybe 1 out of 4 is missing SATA. Gee, you lost a buck.
You're welcome to believe and act in any manner you wish.
If you ever have an on-topic answer to a question I ask, I'd love to
hear it. If you just want to meander all around the topic berating me
for being "not like you", you
can save some keystrokes by stroking the "next" key.

Are we having fun yet?

Paul
2018-03-25 14:57:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by mike
Can you tell if an external USB drive has a SATA inside?
I've been buying used 2.5" external hard drives and sticking
the enclosed drive into SATA laptops.
Last two WD drives had the USB connector directly on the drive
and were useless for that purpose.
Is there a way to tell without opening the case?
The USB drive boxes were 4-3/8" long. That's barely longer
than the drive and suggests integrated USB, but they're
also slightly wider.
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Using the dimensions is about all you've got to work with.

I've never seen a company that makes external drives, go
to the trouble of listing a drive model number for
"what's inside the box". They have no reason to do that.

Paul
VanguardLH
2018-03-25 22:17:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul
Post by mike
Can you tell if an external USB drive has a SATA inside?
I've been buying used 2.5" external hard drives and sticking
the enclosed drive into SATA laptops.
Last two WD drives had the USB connector directly on the drive
and were useless for that purpose.
Is there a way to tell without opening the case?
The USB drive boxes were 4-3/8" long. That's barely longer
than the drive and suggests integrated USB, but they're
also slightly wider.
Any idea how to tell without disassembling the enclosure?
People at garage sales get testy when you start taking
their stuff apart ;-)
Using the dimensions is about all you've got to work with.
I've never seen a company that makes external drives, go
to the trouble of listing a drive model number for
"what's inside the box". They have no reason to do that.
They're selling a product based on specs, not based on components. When
did you ever see a washing machine or television list the components
inside?
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