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Old 12-03-2009
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,306
Seagate FreeAgent Go 320GB External Hard Drive

Seagate FreeAgent Go 320 GB

In Seagate, the products are called FreeAgent external storage. Three references to the catalog: the Desk, Xtreme and Go The latter, with evocative names, which we tested, the other two being intended for a more sedentary use.


Getting Started

The first impression which strikes us leaving the FreeAgent Go from its plastic packaging, it is pretty compact! With 1.2 cm thick, it certainly sets the record for our comparative (also an iPhone end ...). The housing has a serious finish, both the assembly and on the quality of materials. Seagate has opted for a brushed metal shell, which not only provides a nice touch but also contributes to the rigidity of the housing and good thermal dissipation of the disk drive. The lower part is covered with a plastic soft, slightly rubberized, confirming the impression of robustness. The art will appreciate the declination in four colors, blue, black, silver and red, and the constellation of lights at the top of the box, fluctuating depending on disk activity. That fans can rest assured of sobriety, the FreeAgent Go is a nightclub itinerant: lighting that filters through fifty small holes is very discreet. In any case, this new generation of FreeAgent Go easily surpasses the former in terms of design and finishing!

The diodes of the FreeAgent Go into full operation

What else?

In fact appreciable Seagate is the guarantee for this model lasts 5 years. Rather, it is reassuring even if the latter is limited. By "limited", it should be understood that the disc is protected, but not what it contains. Do not attempt to obtain any compensation for loss of your data. The same goes for all manufacturers ... In terms of connections, Seagate is in the universal is limited to USB 2.0. We regret that against the supplied cable is too short and not coupled with an additional USB jack for power, as was the case on the old version of Go A process yet very useful: if a USB port the laptop is not enough to power the drive, what can happen, you connect the second prize. Note that Seagate chose NTFS as the file system for its FreeAgent Go So if you have a Mac, you or around you, it would be better to opt for the FreeAgent Go for Mac, formatted in FAT32.

The mini USB connector

What performance

USB 2.0 standard, ie with the drivers Windows Vista Ultimate, Service Pack 1, the FreeAgent Go is behaving very well in the forefront comparison. According to tests, it reached up to 24.69 MB / s write and 22.58 MB / s reading. Admittedly, it is far from the 60 Mb / s supposed to USB 2.0 (up to 480 Mb / s, we are told everywhere ...), but this speed is still very theoretical and in practice it ' is never reached. The average access time rises to 22.7 ms.

Software supplied

Seagate Manager

This software developed and provided by Seagate is stored on the hard disk Seagate FreeAgent Go Manager provides a simple and pleasant, cut into three parts: information on the disk, backup, synchronization. The first part is simply to display the detected or disks and storage capacity available. It also gives access to different parameters: regulating supply, diodes, test disc and update.

The second part is dedicated to data backup. Overall, the backup features are satisfactory. Already, the software that allows the backup of the fastest comparison: only 120 seconds to copy our 2640 MB test file consisting of office documents, photos, videos and music. For beginners, simple backup option will put your personal data to protect (those in specific folders My Music, My Documents, etc..) Daily. For others, saving custom leave the choice to copy files, file types to be used and the frequency of the backup (by day and hour). Good point also, the backup runs multiple versions of files (the most recent modified files replace the old which are then stored in a file history).

You can also rotate backup, ie use the same backup plan several FreeAgent Go and others. Damage, however it is not possible to do the opposite, ie you juggle several different backup plans at the same time on the same FreeAgent. We would also like to have additional options such as encrypting data, password protection, the choice of the number of versions to keep or backup in real time. Seagate Manager was pleased therefore to go to the essentials. This will be sufficient and even preferable for beginners but frustrating for demanding users who stay on their hunger.

Remains part of the synchronization of data between multiple computers. Incidentally, in order to take full advantage of this feature, do not remove the program manager of Seagate hard drive, to be installed on all computers to synchronize. Again we find the synchronization simple, automated and custom configurable. Synchronization is limited to a hard drive of your computer. If you have partitioned your disk, you must choose which to synchronize. Seagate is there a choice that has trouble understanding, especially as the previous generation of FreeAgent Go did not suffer this constraint.


The FreeAgent Go here 320 GB version, has serious advantages to seduce you. Starting with its pocket-sized, impeccable finish and design of both original and sober. In terms of performance, it fulfills its mission honorably. However, we would have expected better of the software provided, that lacks security features (encryption, password) and options (compression, choice of the number of versions ...). But it compensates for its shortcomings with its speed of execution, once coupled to a FreeAgent Go, and its simplicity of implementation.
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