Seagate Replica review:

Seagate Replica

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Typical Price: £90.00
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Easy to set up; works in the background without any need for intervention; small, neat design.

The Bad Few manual configuration options available; capacity might not be enough for some users; restore procedure isn't idiot-proof.

The Bottom Line The Seagate Replica takes all the hassle out of backing up, but doesn't offer the most comprehensive set of options. Restoring files or partitions is still something of a pain too, while its limited capacity may also prove a stumbling block for anyone with multiple PCs to protect or plenty of data to safeguard

Visit manufacturer site for details.

7.5 Overall

The Seagate Replica hard drive is intended to be a foolproof back-up system for people who have better things to do with their time than worry about configuring dull data-mirroring or disk-imaging software. It might be slightly more expensive per megabyte than other external drives, but it promises to take the headache out of backing up your PC. The 500GB version (reviewed here) is available for around £90, while the 250GB version costs around £65.

Mirror image
The Replica is, to all intents and purposes, an external USB hard disk with its own built-in back-up function. The idea is that even those of a non-technical disposition can simply plug it and sit back, safe in the knowledge that mirror copies of all their precious files, photos, MP3s, documents, programs and just about everything else can be preserved with the least possible human involvement.

The Replica is currently available in two different versions. The 250GB version is a standalone USB external drive that can only be used to back up a single PC. The 500GB drive comes with a dock and can be used to back up multiple computers around your home or office. The dock is a pleasing touch but it doesn't really add any functionality of its own.

As well as sitting in its dock, the Replica can lie flat, like a squashed silver toad

Physically, the unit is quite small compared to most desktop drives. The enclosure is built around a 2.5-inch laptop drive, rather than a full-size hard disk, while the curved metallic design and softly pulsating blue activity light combine to make it a fairly attractive product. The Replica draws all its juice via USB and comes with a double-headed USB cable to make sure that enough power can get to the drive.

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