Q

Can a Maxtor One Touch USB transfer data from one PC to another?

Expert Brett P. Cooper tells users how to share a Maxtor One Touch USB between personal computers and how to safely remove the unit before disconnecting it.

I just purchased a Maxtor One Touch external hard drive (USB). It comes with software that I must load onto my PC. I haven't done anything yet because I don't want to put stuff on my computer if it's not going to do what I purchased it for. By the way, the salesperson told me I could use it to transfer large amounts of data from one PC to another PC. However, when I read the instructions, I can't find anything that tells me I can use...

it to move data from one PC to another PC. The instructions refer me to the Maxtor website, but I can't find anything there that tells me I can transfer data from one PC to another PC using the Maxtor One Touch external hard drive (USB).

My question is: Can you use the Maxtor One Touch external hard drive (USB) to transfer data from one PC to another PC? If you can, do you have to load the software on every computer you move data to and from?

Usually USB devices require device drivers to be installed on all systems that require access to the device. With this said, I believe the Maxtor One Touch External Hard Drive has drivers built into most of the newer version of Windows and should work by just plugging it into the system and letting the system automatically recognize and add the device drivers for the unit to the system. A reboot may be required on the first installation, but after that the unit should perform as requested. I would suggest that you also check the Maxtor website for information on the One Touch product to get the details on frequently asked questions for this product.

As far as sharing the unit between multiple systems, this should work great, provided you safely remove the unit from your system before disconnecting it. Microsoft's Windows systems use a filer system cache to write to disk; as a result, the cache needs to be flushed prior to removing the disk drive from the system or you risk having data that is corrupted on disk when removing it. Select the "Safely Remove Hardware" icon from your taskbar on your desktop and right-click on the USB hard drive and safely remove it. Once the system says it is OK to remove, you should be good to go. One other thing to realize is that older versions of Windows may not be able to read the file system of new versions of Windows, so it is highly recommended that you check the versions of Windows you are running to make sure they are compatible.

This was first published in October 2004

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