Laptop / Notebook Drives
Your laptop hard drive interface may be an IDE (PATA) hard drive or a
SATA hard drive. If you remove the hard drive from your laptop, you can
identify the hard drive interface by the hard drive connector. The pictures
below show what the different connectors look like and the difference
between IDE hard drive (also called ATA / PATA) and SATA hard drives.
Some laptop hard drives, especially IDE PATA hard drives, may have a
unique adapter added to the 44 pin drive connector. This adapter is proprietary
to each manufacturer (ie; Dell, HP, Toshiba) and it changes the interface
connection to work properly with your laptop. In this case, your laptop
hard drive interface will look different than the standard IDE or SATA
pictures below. You can remove that connector adapter bar to see the real
hard drive connector and identify what type of hard drive your laptop
|IDE (PATA) 44-pin Connector
If your hard drive connector does not look like the above connectors,
it may have a unique adapter added to the hard drive. In this case, you
need to remove the connector adapter and you will see the 44-pin connector
or SATA connector like above pictures. Below are a few pictures with examples:
|ATA Drive with Dell connector
||ATA Drive with H.P. connector
||SATA Drive with Dell connector
|ATA Drive without Dell connector
|| ATA Drive without H.P. connector
||SATA Drive without Dell connector
Laptop hard drive heights: Laptop hard drives have been made with different
heights. They can be 8.5mm, 9.5mm, 12mm, 17mm, or 19mm. The majority of
laptop hard drives manufactured now are 9.5mm, which is the industry standard.
An older laptop may have a drive that is 12-19mm in height, but can be
replaced with a 9.5mm drive. (See below for pictures.)
We refer to the different screw hole patterns as "OLD" screw holes or
"NEW" screw holes.
Most drives are mounted in the notebook with a caddy, tray, or rails.
In 1997 the Manufacturers changed the screw hole patterns on drives 2.1gb
and larger. If your computer was manufactured before 1997, or has a drive
smaller than a 2.1gb, it most likely has a drive with the old screw hole
pattern. You can verify this information by removing it from the computer
and comparing it to the pictures below. If the screw holes are towards
the middle of the drive, it would be an "OLD" screw hole pattern. If they
are towards the outside of the drive, it would be a "NEW" screw hole pattern.
"OLD" screw hole patterns:
If your computer has a drive with an "OLD" screw hole pattern, this must
be considered when purchasing a drive. Your options are: purchase a drive
with the same screw hole pattern, replace your hard drive caddy with one
that supports the "NEW" screw holes, or drill new holes in your existing
"NEW" screw hole patterns:
All 8.5mm, 9.5mm and some 12mm drives have the "NEW" screw hole pattern.
All drives manufactured after 1997 have the "NEW" screw hole pattern.
If your computer takes a 12mm "NEW" screw hole pattern drive, you may
use a 12mm or 9.5mm. If your computer currently has a 9.5mm, it will only
work with a 9.5mm drive. Only a few 8.5mm drives were produced by Toshiba,
these drives are currently in some super thin machines. If you currently
have an 8.5mm drive, you must replace it with an 8.5mm drive.
Notebook / Laptop Drives are not proprietary to the machines. Any drive
will work in any machine if it will mount correctly.
See below for pictures of the different heights and screw hole patterns.
|8.5mm, "NEW" screw hole pattern
||9.5mm "NEW" screw hole pattern
|12mm "NEW" screw hole pattern
||12mm "OLD" screw hole pattern
|19mm "OLD" screw hole pattern
If you have laptop with an old screw hole pattern drive, we generally
recommend you replace the laptop. Since these drives are not manufactured
any more, they are hard to find and are more expensive.
Another important issue when upgrading your computer is whether your
current BIOS will support a larger capacity drive.
Please read the BIOS Limitations document.
Whether you're upgrading or simply replacing a hard drive, finding the
correct part for your Computer can be complicated and frustrating. With
our EZ Upgrade Center, you just let us know what Computer Model you have
and we'll show you the parts available for that computer. We'll also give
you some options to simplify the process of installing your drive and
transferring your data. It's fast and easy!
Give it a try!
If you are unsure of what drive to purchase and would like assistance,
please feel free to contact our sales specialists. Email: Sales@DriveSolutions.com
Phone: 877-738-6900 Toll Free Outside California or 818-718-6900 Inside