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How to Upgrade Your Laptop’s Storage

Laptops have a number of advantages over a desktop computer. Perhaps the best and most obvious point is that they can be taken with you wherever you go – they’re portable by nature. However, laptops often aren’t as powerful as desktops due to the fact that the components all have to fit into the device itself. This can mean that the internal storage isn’t as ample as might be desired. So how do you go about upgrading the storage offered in a laptop?

USB Devices

USB sticks come in a variety of sizes, both in physical terms and the data they can hold. It is possible to buy those that are very small and won’t extrude much from your laptop. They’re also cheap, offering ample storage for low cost. Plus with the recent come about of USB 3.0, read and write speeds are greatly improved.

Another option to consider is an external hard drive, which plugs in through the USB slot. The only downside here is that they aren’t as portable. Although they’re by no means bulky, with the size depending on the model, they do connect by cable and sit separately to the laptop. They’re perhaps not the best choice for those who are always on the move (especially with a hard drive that could get damaged through constant movement), but better for those semi-stationary laptop owners.

SD Cards

The majority of laptops nowadays come with a slot for microSD cards – some even have full SD card slots. SD cards are not expensive to buy and the great thing is that they’re compatible with other devices like smartphones and cameras.

SD cards won’t be as fast as an internal drive, so it isn’t recommended that you store data that you access constantly on them. And although they don’t offer heaps of storage space (standard cards go up to 128GB; anything over and it isn’t worth the price), they’re great for pictures and videos.

Since this is for your laptop, another benefit is that SD cards – and especially microSD cards – are small and will usually slot all the way into your device. Great for portability!

The Cloud

Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive… you’ve probably heard these names a lot of times. Generally, cloud storage offers a certain amount of space for a specific cost per month or year. You upload your data to their servers and you can then access it wherever you are, providing you have an internet connection.

This option is better for those who aren’t looking to have constant access to their data or who want the ability to load things up across devices (such as on a phone or tablet).

Internal Drive

It is possible to upgrade the internal drive of your laptop, but this step isn’t recommended for those who aren’t confident in how to perform it. It involves opening the back of your laptop up and unscrewing components in order to get the drive out.

It’s unlikely your laptop has space for a secondary drive to be inserted, so this involves removing your old drive and replacing it with a newer (and larger) one. The procedure for this varies depending on your laptop, so be sure to refer to your manufacturer’s guide before attempting.

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