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Add a second hard drive

I'm sure this has been asked before, but I couldn't find the right answer by searching.I have a Dell Dimension 8250, Windows XP Home SP3. I'd like to add a second, larger hard drive. The one that's in there is a 120 Gig ultra ATA 100, 7200 RPM with IDE ribbon cable. I'd like to put in a 500 Gig hard drive. Do I have to search for a particular one to match what I have? I just recently added memory to the computer and I had to find the exact product to match what was in there (Rambus Ram). Does adding a hard drive work that way or can you put any kind in?

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Actually one thing to check

First thing is to see if the motherboard has an extra IDE channel to add another hard drive. If you only have PATA (IDE) available, then usually there are two channels but check to see. Some boards may have both IDE and SATA. If there is a SATA connector then that is a choice, too. While you are looking, check to see if there is another connector on the power supply for an additional drive. SATA drives use a different power connector than IDE but there is a converter available for that.

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It has provisions for two

Thanks for that advice. The computer's owner's manual has pretty thorough instructions for the actual process of installing a second hard drive. It shows a power cable, and a second set of terminals on that wide ribbon cable. What I am not sure about is what specifications, if any, I need to adhere to for the second drive. It seems like it should be 7200 RPM like the original, but other that having the right type of terminals, are there other specifications to consider? As I said before, I'd like to get one that is 500 Gig. Does that matter to the computer? I already have an external hard drive for a backup, but I would also like to put the contents of the first hard drive on the second as a backup, too.

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