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Seagate FreeAgent Go 320 GB USB 2.0 Portable External Hard Drive ST903203FAA2E1-RK (Black)
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- Able to take your desktop environment with you
- Save all your private information instead of on the computer
- Protect against unathorized use with 256-bit encryption
- Windows XP/Vista compatible
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Free Agent GO Drive - 320GB 5400RPM 8MB Cache USB 2.0 up to 480MB/s
From the Manufacturer
With its sleek design and huge capacity, the FreeAgent® Go portable storage solution makes it easy to take your photos, music, videos, and documents everywhere. Included, easy-to-use software helps keep your information safe with automatic data backup and encryption of your important files and folders. You can sync content between your work and home computers so you’ll always have your most current versions. And you can take advantage of the world’s first portable drive with a convenient desktop dock accessory. Simply pop your drive into the FreeAgent dock whenever you want to access your files — no more fumbling for cables!
Winner of CNET Editors’ Choice, September 2008 and PC Magazine Editors’ Choice, October 2008.
“The Seagate FreeAgent Go is our favorite portable hard drive to date and takes our award for Editors’ Choice. The drive is well designed and fast, and you won’t find a better value for the price.” — Justin Yu, CNET
FreeAgent® Go is the thinnest portable
| Automatically back up and sync your |
files with the included software
|FreeAgent® Go with a convenient docking station — no more fumbling for cables|
|Sleek Design and Huge Capacity |
With its sleek design and huge capacity, the FreeAgent® Go portable storage solution makes it easy to take your photos, music, videos, and documents everywhere. Pocket and carry your data with ease thanks to a sleek design—the thinnest portable storage solution on the market. Even the cable folds up compactly.
|Easy-to-use Software |
Included, easy-to-use software helps keep your information safe with automatic data backup and encryption of your important files and folders. You can sync content between your work and home computers so you’ll always have your most current versions.
|Convenient Dock and Travel Case |
Take advantage of the world’s first portable drive with an optional desktop dock accessory. Simply pop your drive into the FreeAgent dock whenever you want to access your files — no more fumbling for cables!
- Pocket and carry your data with ease thanks to a sleek design—the thinnest portable storage solution on the market. Even the cable folds up compactly.
- Choose from a variety of colors to complement your style and help you differentiate between multiple drives.
- Access your files with unparalleled convenience by simply popping your drive into the FreeAgent desktop dock accessory.
- You’ll never fumble for cables again! Even purchase another dock for convenience at home and at the office.
- Take all your photos, music, videos and documents with you everywhere thanks to large storage capacities of 250GB, 320GB, and 500GB
- Easily protect your data with automatic backup software.
- Keep your most important files and folders private with software encryption technology.
- Sync content between your work and home computers so you’ll always have your most current versions.
- Experience fast data transfer with a USB 2.0 interface.
- Get started quickly with pre-loaded software. No CDs!
- Save energy by using one small drive for both mobile and desktop needs, and take advantage of an environmentally smart utility that can power down your drive when it’s not in use.
- Enjoy peace of mind with a 5-year limited warranty from the worldwide leader in storage solutions.
What’s in the Box
FreeAgent® Go portable hard drive, FreeAgent software pre-loaded on drive (Windows only), Quickstart guide, New and flexible USB travel cable. Optional dock not included
Top customer reviews
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The negatives: There seems to be a major reliability problem with some of the hard drives (note similar recent reviews of failure at Amazon). Mine died after only 7 months of use on a personal computer. It was never jostled around or subjected to extreme temps as it never left my desktop after it was plugged in. Several utilities were unable to recover any data due to "unreadable sectors" and Master File Table errors -- quite likely physical damage to the head or platters. I managed to save about 20 out of 200+ GB before the unit went totally south.
Seagate warranties the drive for 5 years, but it's a whole lot of no fun trying to navigate their cold, impersonal website. It took several tries at their site to get the correct model name entered without being rejected as invalid. Their warranty terms are full of warnings and dire threats of legal action in case you try to defraud them. They do NOT pay for shipping the defective product to their facility (actually a warehouse in Texas used by a number of corporations for return items). They insist you pack the dead HDD, USB cord, and manual in the original package or a corrugated cardboard box surrounded by 2 inches of foam with the unit inside an ESD package. They will be happy to sell those to you for a mere $19.99. I normally keep original packaging, but it was one of those plastic jobs that practically requires a hacksaw to extract the product from, so it was trashed. I was able to scrounge up the foam and an ESD bag from previously purchased items.
Seagate will be glad to try and retrieve your lost data for a small fortune. They do not send you a new drive, but a "remanufactured" one. The box I received had very large lettering printed on top (underneath the shipping label) warning me to treat the fragile device with great care (as though I were somehow responsible for their poor quality control and defective product). Oh, and they didn't pack the HDD in an ESD bag. On the bright side, I do have a nice box and foam in which to return my brand new remanufactured HDD when it dies.
I have a five-year-old 120 GB Seagate Barracuda internal HDD that still runs like a champ. I bought the FreeAgent Go because I thought I could depend on Seagate for it's reliability. Judging from my experience with this hard drive, the company seems to have gone downhill quality-wise.
You can't really go wrong with either drive (both companies offer a great five-year warranty), but I like the form factor of the Seagates a bit better (they're a fraction of an inch smaller in all dimensions but LOOK even more svelte than they are). Also, an Amazon promotion currently offers a free dock with the Seagate drives, much like an iPod dock -- just slide the device onto the connector and it mounts on your desktop. Handy and elegant. The WD drives don't have this option.
The downside to using the Seagate dock (and this is why I give this setup 4 stars, not 5) is that, for reasons I don't comprehend, it takes up TWO USB ports on your computer. Those have to be powered ports, so you can't use a non-powered USB hub (at least that doesn't work with my one-year-old iMac and my el-cheapo hub -- your mileage may vary). The alternative is buying a powered hub, OR just not using the dock, instead connecting the drive directly to a single USB port on the computer with the supplied cable.
Speaking of USB connections: Apart from the dock, another advantage of the Seagate drive over the WD Passport is that it seems more power-efficient. At least, I can use the Seagate with my aging Powerbook and a single (supplied) cable, no problems. The WD drives, on the other hand, won't mount on my Powerbook's desktop unless I purchase a special three-plug "power booster" USB cable that (again) takes up two of the machine's ports. This may be a small thing, but it's meaningful to me. With the Seagates, I can finally just slide a capacious drive into a shirt pocket or any other available small space, and use the device on the road, nothing else necessary beyond a standard mini-to-regular USB cable (supplied) -- no booster cable, no power supply.
There is also a Mac version of the Seagate drive. I inadvertently purchased the PC version but it makes zero difference, I believe: the thing works fine, no drivers needed. The Mac version contains platform-specific backup software and maybe a couple of other goodies that I don't need or won't miss.
Due to the idiosyncracies of file systems and how bits and bytes are counted in the computer industry, the usable capacity of the 500GB Seagate drive is actually just 465Gb. That 'shortcoming' goes for every drive on the market, though -- no big deal, just something to keep in mind.
The Seagate's speed is fine: on my Mac, it took just under 4 minutes to copy 5 gigs' worth of smallish files. So it's neither a speed demon nor a slowpoke.
One more thing about the dock: It comes with a nice enough black leatherette padded sleeve for the drive. That bonus really should have been packaged with the drive instead of the dock, but I'm not complaining. The Passport drives come without a case or sleeve, and I paid another 30 bucks for two Case Logic soft-side cases at the time. I will continue to use the Case Logic cases for the Seagate GO drives, because the Seagates, outfitted with their own leatherette sleeves, fit snugly inside the Case Logic clamshell design -- double protection and peace of mind.
I own 3 of the 500GB versions and love them. When I saw the 1TB version available for about 10% more than the 500GB version, I couldn't pass it up. I give the 500GB drives a 5/5.
Unfortunately, the 1TB ones seem a bit more fragile. I have no basis behind that other than it "feels" more fragile. The size is about twice that of the 500GB version, but (fortunately!) it uses the same dock. The drive has a little "groove" at the halfway point so that it sits in the dock and part of it hangs over the edge. GREAT move here instead of making everyone re-buy a drive.
While the size is twice that of the 500GB, the weight seems to be about 3x. For some reason, this drive is really heavy and I could see someone easily dropping it after picking it up expecting it to be very light. One downside to the larger physical size of the enclosure is that the majority of portable hard drive cases won't fit (some are CLOSE, but not close enough). Finding a case could be hard (I got lucky and found a bundle that included the Seagate protective case).
I feel more comfortable not putting "all my eggs in one basket" - I'd rather have 2 separate 500GB drives, that way if something goes wrong, not everything is lost. While losing 500GB of data is no picnic, losing 1TB is much worse. Because of that, I use the 1TB Freeagent go as a backup for content on my 500GB Freeagent GO's. For the price, it was tough to pass up. If it holds up as well as the 500GB Freeagent GO's, I'll be very happy. So far, so good. Transfer speeds are also very nice out of it - even faster than my desk-size WD RAID external drive.