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Aug 16 2011   3:51PM GMT

StarTech.com unveils palm-sized duplication dock for hard drives

John Hilliard Profile: John Hilliard

StarTech.com recently announced a new handheld device aimed at tech professionals on the go who need to be able to duplicate or restore hard drive data or technicians who need to swap hard drives regularly.

The compact unit has a somewhat unwieldy name – the Portable eSATA USB to SATA Standalone Hard Drive Duplicator Dock – but it comes with enough connection options to make a user feel a little MacGyver-ish while cloning a hard drive on the road.

StarTech.com, an Ohio-based connectivity parts manufacturer, also says the device is useful for forensic investigators who need to make exact duplicates of a source drive. That includes drives which aren’t connected to a computer:

“The new duplicator features a compact, pocket/palm-sized design that offers a practical solution for mobile users who require the ability to make exact copies of hard drive content, with the flexibility to connect bare hard drives through either eSATA or USB for simple access to files, data transfers or backups.”

The unit can serve as a stand-alone hard drive replicator that clones data, partition and boot sector information from one 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch drive to another at a rate of up to 72 MB per second using the two SATA ports built on opposite sides of the device, according to the company. The device comes with a LED progress bar to track the progress of a hard drive duplication in action.

The unit can also be connected to a PC as an external drive dock equipped with USB 2.0 and eSATA ports.

In a statement, Carey Cline, a senior product manager for StarTech.com, said the device is offers similar functionality to the company’s other drive duplication products.

“This latest duplicator caters directly to environments that benefit from being able to mobilize hard drive duplication and data access” said Cline.

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