Most helpful critical review
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
The last portable storage device you will ever need!
on May 11, 2012
**Update 12/4/2013: So I was able to find a cable on eBay that is compatible and I purchased it to see if that might be the problem. It was not, but I take back my previous comment about the cable. I just didn't look hard enough I guess. I then booted into Ubuntu to see if it was a Windows issue and bam, hard drive recognized. So I'm not sure if it is a Windows issue or a hard drive issue but Ubuntu found my stuff and I'm backing it up now. It should be noted that I tried the drive on an updated Mac with no success either. The hard drive still appears worthless on Windows machines but least I have my files now.**
**Update 10/28/2013: So, after a little over a year the device has died. Not as a result of a drop, a gun shot or a sledgehammer. I even made a point to always ensure the hard drive was "safe to remove" before unplugging it. Sadly, the computer simply stopped recognizing it, suggesting that the internals just stopped working. I've tried a few things to get it back up and running but to no avail. Unfortunately, I did not back up ALL the data (my fault but I really thought this would last longer than this) and I did not buy ioSafe's recovery service (again because I thought I'd get at least a few years out of it). Lesson learned. While the hard drive is surely better and more rugged than most, it too appears to suffer from the same problems as all others. I have to give up my quest to recover any data from the drive. Updated review - 3 out of 5 stars**
A little about how I ended up with my ioSafe - I travel quite a lot for work, and I need to take my work with me. So, up until the purchase of the ioSafe I was using just regular portable hard drives. Yes, plural. I made my first purchase in 2010 when I picked up a WD 500GB Passport (with some proprietary encryption software). Well, after a year (and after putting a year's worth of work on it), the hard drive stopped working. A computer would "recognize" it but the built in encryption software (which was not activated) and taken over and constantly demanded a password. Seeing as the software was not active I had no idea what password it was asking for. After trips to several data recovery places it was determined that all of my information was lost. That said, 95% of the information was backed up to a computer but I still lost a good amount of data. OK, no big deal I'll just purchase another hard drive. This time an off the shelf Imation 500GB hard drive. Well, what do you think happened. Roughly a year later, BAM - the hard drive stopped working.
At this point I had had enough. I started to shop around for something that could take a licking and keep on... going. I was on Engadget one day and noticed that ioSafe was giving away one of these drives. I put my name in the hat (because I was in desperate need of a portable drive for work) but no luck. After some online research and reviews I found myself on Amazon. Tech sites are great but I wanted customer reviews and this product's reviews were out of the park. So, I pulled the trigger.
Hard drive arrived, got it up and running and registered at ioSafe. Here is the interesting part, Robb, the CEO of ioSafe, apparently randomly emails new customers after they have registered to seek their input. I was one of those customers. While not related to the hard drive itself, Robb was outstanding and great to talk to. If nothing else I think the fact that the CEO reaches out to customers the way Robb does says a lot about the philosophy behind this company. After Robb and I finished talking I told him that I'd wait a couple weeks before I wrote a review, just to make sure the product really was what everyone claimed it was (check out YouTube videos of this thing getting shot and submerged and still work!).
Well, I had the drive for about a week and it had its first "test." I was returning from DC and if anyone has been in and around DC during rush hour, it is insane. Traffic sucks as usual and I have my work laptop in the back of the car in a bag with the hard drive. Well, wouldn't you know it at one point I have to slam on my breaks so hard that the laptop bag w/ hard drive go flying off the bag seat, hit the front seat and fall to the floor. Not that this is scientific in any way but got back to work, hooked it up and no issues. Granted this was just one "jolt" but still I'm sure there are plenty of drives that would have failed based on that fall alone.
As for the product itself:
Construction - This thing is a beast! Just holding it you know that you've got a quality product in your hands.
Transfer speeds - Great. Plus with USB 3.0 (assuming your CPU has it) you can transfer lightning quick.
Durability - Like I said, check out the YouTube videos. This is a tough piece of equipment.
ioSafe Services - This is great! You get a 1 year data recovery service (no questions asked) for FREE. And when you register you can purchase additional coverage so if you do happen to drop your ioSafe from the peak of Mt. Everest and it hits every rock on the way down and does stop working, they will work to get your data back.
Customer Service - Amazing! Like I said, Robb was excellent and the fact he even makes the effort to seek our feedback on products or ideas says a lot about ioSafe.
As I use the drive more, I may update this review but if you're in the market for a rugged, dependable hard drive that you can hit with a sledgehammer, submerge in water and then shoot with a shotgun without losing any data, this is it! And for the price you can't go wrong!