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Member
AM_SOS
Posts: 7

pros and cons of external DVD drives ??

hi all!

well i am planning to get a new toshiba laptop as my current A200 is acting up more and more these days.

one of the machines i am considering seriously is the T235 with the U5400 processor.

however, i am quite unsure as to the problems i could face owing to the lack of an internal DVD drive. e.g. is the installation of operating systems such as windows 7, or linux possible using an install DVD in an ext DVD drive ?

are there any possible installation errors that may creep in if one doesn't use an internal DVD drive ?

can someon please throw light on the pros and cons of using external DVD drives !

thanks!

Member
lgoltry
Posts: 1

Re: pros and cons of external DVD drives ??

Hi. I'm using an external Toshiba Portable USB 2.0 SuperMulti Drive http://laptops.toshiba.com/accessory/PA3761U-1DV2 with my new Toshiba Satellite T235D-S1345RD (with an AMD Turion II NEO K625 CPU). I bought the drive at Best Buy for ~$70.00 but I'm sure you could find a better price online. I bought the notebook at Office Depot for $529.99 before tax. When I plug in the external drive it is recognized by Windows and the drivers installed automagically without any action on my part. I was able to use the Recovery Media Creator to burn 5 DVD's successfully and without any fuss. The drive is recognized by the BIOS and can be set as the primary boot device or do F12 and can be selected as the boot device there.

 

Advantages of an external DVD drive:

 

1. Weight - The weight of the laptop is reduced.

2. Size - The size of the laptop is reduced.

 

Disadvantages of an external DVD drive:

 

1. You have to go get the external DVD drive everytime you want to play/burn a disc (and it might not be handy, like if you left it at home.

2.If you want to pick up the laptop and move it while the external DVD drive is plugged in it's a hassle because you've got that external drive flopping around. Not a huge deal just requires a little extra patience.

 

Prior to getting the T235 Satellite (which I got last Friday) I used this external DVD drive with a Toshiba Mini NB205-N310/BN for a year. During that year I had zero problems with getting the DVD drive to be recognized by the BIOS or Windows. I installed several Linux Distributions and never had any trouble booting from the external DVD drive. Never had a problem installing Linux. Never had a problem restoring Windows XP Home with the Recovery Media.

 

All in all, I'd probably never go back to an internal DVD drive. The advantages of weight and size savings far outweigh the disadvantages, for me anyway.

 

Hope this helps.

Member
JimJohnson
Posts: 8

Re: pros and cons of external DVD drives ??

Adding further to the reply from lgoltry...

 

A few more cons:

 

If you are going to haul the external DVD drive everywhere with you anyhow, you will typically be carrying more weight than you would with a comparable notebook that has an internal DVD drive. This is due to the weight of the external case & cable.

 

If you are not travelling much with the notebook, you might find an internal DVD to be more convenient in spite of the extra weight.

 

If you are the type that connects several USB devices simultaneously, you might regret giving up a USB port for an external drive.

 

And if you want the fastest write speed, an internal drive will be faster than a USB drive (although not by a lot).

 

Pro: If you only have infrequent use of a DVD drive, and never while travelling, ditching the excess weight is a good thing.