View Full Version : Maxtor One Touch 4 500GB Review

07-22-2008, 03:37 PM
Maxtor One Touch 4 500GB External Drive

Data backup is an essential part of good computer use and critical for most power users dabbling with different operating systems and computer configurations. If you're like me and go through a fresh OS install every 6-or-so months, they are life (and money) savers. Gone are the days of 20 DVDs and wasted money with my new Maxtor One Touch 4.

The Maxtor One Touch 4 (which I will now call One Touch) comes in two different flavors; the basic One Touch and the One Touch Plus -- the former is what I have. The basic One Touch comes in 4 varieties as well; 250GB, 500GB, 750GB and 1TB. It is USB 2.0 and comes with software for both Windows and Mac. The One Touch Plus is nearly the same, with the addition of a Firewire cable for faster data transfer. The 500GB One Touch retails around $130.

First Impressions
After picking up the box and noticing the massive size, I was a tad bit worried that I'd have a UPS sized hard drive sitting on my desk. Not to worry though, upon further investigation I found the dimensions and was quite relieved. At 6.75" tall and 3.5" wide, it's a very standard size. The unit itself has a very ominous look to it, like a Lian-Li case mated with a Tie Fighter. Darth Vader would be proud to drop this on his desk. The case has nice sleek curves and the white LED button in the front pulses soothingly when powered on. Box contents included a USB 2.0 cable, power cable, Post-It sized instructions manual (like it needed one) and the drive.


My first test with the drive was under my Windows XP installation. It was recognized immediately, I was prompted to install the auto-backup software and I was quickly configured. Once the drive was installed, the booklet instructed a press of the LED button (One Touch, if you will). The software opened, added a new backup profile and prompted for my folders. I really only needed the My Documents folder backed up, so one check and a Next click and I was off. Weighing in at 27GB and containing my music, pictures and documents, this was slow taking for my drive. Being USB 2.0 only is a real downside to the basic version, but that's what the One Touch Plus is for (so I really can't complain). After an hour and a half my files were transfered into a folder called ARCANESYSTEMS (the name of your computer). Very simple to use under Windows. But how about Linux?

Well, to my utter disbelief (not really) there was no Linux software for the drive. This was really no biggie though, as I simply plugged it in and double clicked the One Touch drive mounted on my desktop. After creating a folder called Linux in the Maxtor Backups folder (where your Windows backup folder is made) I did a nice copy/paste of my /home directory. Being a mere 270MB was a great and made the transfer nice and quick (averaging at 20MB/s). Still no real problems, right?

The drive is also fully OS X ready, with a DMG of the software on the drive. I won't be testing OS X now, but we'll see what future edits will bring.


It's an external drive. It's black and looks slightly evil. It's good for about 460GB formatted. It's USB 2.0. What more can you say? Besides the USB bottleneck there's nothing wrong with the drive, other than some unnecessary folders and files that come on the drive (EULA, manuals, etc). The blank canvas would be great for a modder and the simplicity of the device is nice as well. Plus, at $99 on sale it was a great price.

Large space
Looks good

Comes with some unnecessary files

Overall - 8/10 -- Check this drive out.

Drum Thumper
07-29-2008, 01:36 AM
So what you're saying is that this beauty is plug and pray...err play ready with *nix?

Great review, as always!

07-29-2008, 05:05 PM
So what you're saying is that this beauty is plug and pray...err play ready with *nix?

Great review, as always!
Yep, it's PnP with Ubuntu 8.04 (and Windows too). Any current distro should mount it for you right away. Also, you don't have to install the software on Windows, it'll just show up as a Maxtor One Touch.

And thanks :).