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Using & Modding Hard Disk Drive Enclosures

Here are links to guides about using and modding external hard disk drive enclosures. If you have written a HOWTO yourself (or if you know of tips and tricks not mentioned here), please submit a new entry.

Make an External HDD from Old External CD/RW [external link]A pretty straight forward conversion of an old external CD-Writer to a more useful external hard drive.
External Hard Disk Hack [external link]Have a busted hard disk enclosure? This shows how you can replace the damaged enclosure with a clear plastic book case.
Piggyback an External Drive [external link]Are you tired of pulling out your portable drive and connecting it whenever you need to back something up? Attaching an external HDD to the lid of your laptop isn't the most elegant solution but very convinient.
Extended HDD Enclosure [external link]How to connect two IDE units to a single 3.5" external drive housing and to replace the single and very short IDE cable provided with the enclosure (the one that connects the hard drive to the very controller) with a conventional (long and grey with 3 connectors) Ultra ATA IDE cable ( use a 'Y' Molex extension cable to be able to power the two drive). This mod is really quick, easy and useful to do and ideal for users that travels a lot.
Maxtor HDD Caddy 80GB [external link]Giving new life to an old hard drive caddy, by substituting the 80GB drive with a 200GB drive.
Peeze 3.5-Inch External Drive Enclosure [external link]Build Your Very Own External USB2 HD.
Seagate 3.5-Inch Pushbutton Backup External Hard Drive [external link]This illustrated guide explains how to disassemble the enclosure.
Western-Digital MyBook USB-Drive [external link]How to open the external drive and replace the a broken HDD.
Western-Digital MyBook 250GB [external link]How to customize the LED color.
External CD ROM Drive to HDD Enclosure Conversion [external link]Hot Swappable IDE, how to make your HDD a USB drive. Did you ever add or remove a HDD in your PC? If so, you should know that you need to close your PC before removing or adding anything (otherwise it can broke the hardware). Here is a simple way to do that, with an old usb external CD ROM.
External Enclosure Fan [external link]How to add a fan to an external HDD case (in Italian).
The Geekster Moleskine [external link]Modding an external HDD into a Moleskine notebook.
Alcor Miro Corp. AU6390 [external link]Teardown report and disassembly photos of a mini USB-HardDisk.
i-rocks [external link]How to put a 2.5" laptop hard drive into a portable case.
LaCie External 3.5'' HDD Enclosure [external link]Troubleshooting tips for an external FireWire hard disk drive enclosure (with and internal parallel drive). This HOWTO explains in detail how to free your hard drive from its firewire enclosure and then either swap cases or install your drive into a G4 or G5.
LaCie Desktop Hard Disk [external link]For some reason, devices of this type - i.e. external USB enclosures that come pre-equipped with a drive as opposed to similar enclosures that are sold without one - are not normally intended to be opened or serviced by the end user. Consequently, the user manual does not give any instructions on opening the case, much less replacing the hard disk drive inside it. However, there are a number of good reasons why you might want to do precisely those things: * in order to remove the HDD from the case and install it into an internal drive bay of your PC (this could come handy if you no longer need the portability of an external enclosure and would like to get rid of the unnecessary case, cabling, and a separate wall wart, or if you just want to get the full SATA throughput instead of mere USB 2.0 speeds), * in order to replace a broken HDD with a new one, * in order to recover the data (and the drive) if the USB controller has broke down but the HDD itself is still working, * or in order to upgrade the original HDD with a new one that has a larger capacity.
N.N. [external link]Recycle a laptop hard drive using it in an external USB enclosure.
IcyBox USB 2.0 [external link]How to put a cooling fan into and external hard disk drive enclosure (in German).
IcyBox USB 2.0 [external link]This tutorial explains how to put a personal logo into the case of an external HDD enclosure (in German).
IcyBox 3.5'' [external link]You open the drive by pushing from the front - you MUST re-assemble it by inserting the front into the back of the case - there are detents which prevent the reverse; also note that the carrier bolts onto the sleeve with four screws inserted from the bottom. Inside the case are the screws to mount the HD and secure the case to the frame and a SATA cable.
Kingwin Elite SATA 3.5'' [external link]Remove two screws from the back and the tray easily slides out. When you open the unit, there may be a dangling wire with a two pin connector attached to the external case - this is for the HD light.
KingWin Jet [external link]This external enclosure houses a SATA hard drive which can be connected to your PC either through a SATA or USB cable. The cover comes off very easily - the large knurled knobs make it easy to unscrew the back without a screwdriver; once opened, you see the PCB and the cooling fan.
Zelda Drive 1.0 [external link]NES Cartridge Hard Drive Mod: how to put a laptop hard drive into a Nintendo cartridge to make your personal external storage enclosure.
Epson P-3000 MultiMedia Storage Device [external link]When the 40GB storage is definitely not enough, here is a way to swap the drive with 2.5-Inch laptop HDD.
FreeCom Classic Series(CD-RW) [external link]How to convert an old external CD writer into an external 3.5inch hard disk drive enclosure.
Vantec Nexstar CX 3.5'' SATA Enclosure [external link]How to make an External USB Hard Drive from Lego. Technically it was not made from Lego from the bottom up it's just the SATA-USB logic chip and the frame of a normal drive enclosure encased in Lego Bricks.
Spire HandyBook 2.5 Inch External HDD Case [external link]With laptops getting smaller and smaller and Solid State Disk gaining popularity, disk sizes are getting smaller. This is once again making small external hard disk more popular nowadays. Here is a review of a stylish 2.5 Inch Serial Ata hard disk casing.
Do It Yourself Making an External Hard Drive Guide [external link]If you're looking for some extra external storage for your notebook you could go out and buy a ready made USB or FireWire external 100GB hard drive for around $200, or you could more cheaply and quite easily make your own portable external hard drive by buying an enclosure and "naked" hard drive and slapping them together for around $100. Furthermore, instead of chucking away that old 40GB notebook hard drive you just upgraded you can read this guide and see how to easily use it as an external hard drive for data backup.
External NoName HDD Enclosure [external link]How to put an 3.5 Inch IDE HDD into a cheap noname aluminium case, complete with its own power supply, mains kettle cable and USB connector cable.

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