Programming and Technology blog

HP Pocket Media Drive

A couple of weeks ago I purchased a HP Pocket Media Drive Model: PD2500s as a way to store large files (iso, vhd, gho, etc.) so that when I can:

  • Have a place to store my Virtual Hard Drives
  • Have a place to store my CD images
  • Have a place to store the last image of my laptop incase I need to restore
  • Have a quick place to do one off backups
  • Have a device that is small enough and large enough to store extra files I ma need on the road

So far the unit has performed flawless, I have no issues running my VM's or mounting ISO's from the drive and I don't really notice any performance issues.  The drive itself is pretty compact (being a 2.5" drive) and the case only adds about an inch more to the over all length of the drive.  The only issue I have is not with the drive but with the cable that came with it.

Most generic 2.5" drive enclosures come with two separate cables, one for data and one for power.  This drive comes with one cable but has two USB ends and one end that plugs into the drive (see Picture below).


The issue is the two plugs need two USB ports closer than 6.5” inches or you are forced to purchase an extension cable.  This is probably fine for most tower setups but a lot of laptops (older ones) don’t have two USB ports that close together.  Fortunately my HP does but I can see how this might cause issues for users who may have an older laptop.

USB Flash Drives ...

Here in Canada Best Buy is selling 8GB USB Flash Drives from Duracell (who knew they made USB drives) for $19.99. Now I have seen drives of this size cheaper but to come from a "known" name brand like this made me wonder how good the drive actually was.

When I got home I tested the Read/Write speed using the USB Flash Drive Tester (found here). I also tested my 4GB ScanDisk Cruzer Micro as a simple control. While I am not sure if having two drives of different size matters the results were:
  • Duracell
    • Write: Tested total 7645.999MB in 0:11:52 with 10.741MB/s
    • Read: Tested total 7645.999MB in 0:08:59 with 14.177MB/s
  • ScanDisk
    1. Write: Tested total 3919.840MB in 0:14:46 with 4.431MB/s
    2. Read: Tested total 3919.840MB in 0:07:56 with 8.234MB/s
While I am not sure how acurate my tests were but it does make you wonder just because it is cheaper is it really cheap?

Windows 2008 and Me

So I decided to install Windows 2008 on my HP dv9000 series laptop and use this guide to create a better than Vista experience using a more solid OS than the POS that is Vista. The install went as expected and I was able to update the missing drivers using the Vista ones that came with my laptop (yeah I know Vista drivers on Win2k8 so sue me)

So far so good, oops I spoke to soon…

Seems that I have inherited the disappearing mouse pointer syndrome. First I don’t have the computer set up to hibernate, second I don’t have the computer setup to go into screen saver first then turn off the monitor and third this behavior tends to happen every time the monitor either comes out of screensaver or from turned off. Searching Google has made me believe that this is a HP/Nvidia/Vista/Dual Monitor issue as there are a lot of HP/Nvidia/Vista/ Dual Monitor owners suffering from this behavior. The lame solution is to enable pointer trails and set the visibility to short when this happens. Of course this causes a performance drop with the speed of the mouse.

I am going to try and install Vista this weekend and see if I have the same problems with that OS and driver combination. If so it’s back to XP Pro for me.