Tip

USB adapter may be more convenient than a drive cage

In the past I've discussed external USB/Firewire "cages" for hard drives. With this familiar add-on, a drive can be mounted in the cage and then connected externally to a PC or laptop via Firewire/1394 or the more popular USB 2.0

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interface. This is an easy way to recycle bare drives that might not normally be mounted in a PC's chassis.

A company called Scythe Co. Ltd. has developed a device that is in some ways even more convenient than a drive cage. Called the Kama Connect, this connector plugs into the back of a bare drive and connects to a PC via USB 2.0, allowing you to quickly mount and browse any SATA- or IDE-compatible drive without having to mount it in a cage. If you're digging through a crate full of drives, or want to quickly mount two drives to copy data from one to the other without installing them in a PC, this is an easy way to solve those problems.

The connector sports an IDE plug on one side and a SATA plug on the other. It also supplies power to the drives through standard Molex connectors. The device itself draws power from a supplied 110-240V adapter and can power up to two drives at once (one SATA, one IDE), provided the combined electrical load of the drives is not more than 2 amps.

The device can also connect to 2.5-inch IDE drives, but the 2.5-inch IDE adapter cable is not included with the package; it has to be purchased separately.

About the author: Serdar Yegulalp is editor of the Windows Power Users Newsletter, which is devoted to hints, tips, tricks, news and goodies for Windows NT, Windows 2000 and Windows XP users and administrators. He has more than 10 years of Windows experience under his belt, and contributes regularly to SearchWinComputing.com and SearchSQLServer.com.

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This was first published in July 2006

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