Go Back   Hardware Canucks > HARDWARE > Storage

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old April 10, 2008, 07:56 AM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5
Red face Need help selecting 2.5" HDD wrt Data Interface

Hi There,

I am a bit green when it comes to PC hardware, especially hard drive details.

I have a IBM Thinkpad T 20 with a megre 6 GB hard drive. I would like to install a larger drive i.e. 60/80 GB.

The Hard Drive Interface is an Ultra DMA/ATA-33. What drives would I be able to use in this upgrade? Are there any restrictions and/or recommendations?

Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old April 10, 2008, 09:14 AM
stoanee's Avatar
Hall Of Fame
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Lacombe Alberta
Posts: 3,255

My System Specs


I believe something like this may work. I would pull out my hard drive and carry it off to the retailer for comparison before purchasing though.http://www.memoryexpress.com/Products/PID-MX12749(ME).aspx
Oh, googled and found this.
Q: Is a ATA100/133 drive backwards compatible?
A: Yes. All ATA drives are backwards compatible with PIO/DMA/ATA33/66/100. Just bear in mind that you will be limited to the slowest component, and older motherboards/systems often have inherent capacity limitations. e.g. Motherboards of Pentium 2 vintage (ATA33) often cannot handle drives over 33.8Gb (BIOS limitation).
What processor do you have? You may have to find a used unit on fleabay. Another alternative is to go to a external harddrive.

Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old April 10, 2008, 02:09 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5

Thanks for the prompt reply.

The IBM T 20 Thinkpad Specs are as follows:
700 MHz Pentium lll
MotherBoard Chipset Intel 440BX
Current 6 GB 2.5 drive is 5400 rpm.

Also, can I put in a 7200 rpm?

USB system is version 1 not 2 so external drive transfer is not preferrable but probably easier to install.

Thank you for your help. It is appreciated.

p.s. Thanks for the link to Memory Express, Great Price!
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old April 11, 2008, 06:40 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5
Default Some info found during search thought I would share

From Webopedia:

ATA Last modified: Thursday, December 01, 2005

(1) Short for Advanced Technology Attachment, a disk drive implementation that integrates the controller on the disk drive itself. There are several versions of ATA, all developed by the Small Form Factor (SFF) Committee:
ATA: Known also as IDE, supports one or two hard drives, a 16-bit interface and PIO modes 0, 1 and 2.

ATA-2: Supports faster PIO modes (3 and 4) and multiword DMA modes (1 and 2). Also supports logical block addressing (LBA) and block transfers. ATA-2 is marketed as Fast ATA and Enhanced IDE (EIDE).

ATA-3: Minor revision to ATA-2.
Ultra-ATA: Also called Ultra-DMA, ATA-33, and DMA-33, supports multiword DMA mode 3 running at 33 MBps.

ATA/66: A version of ATA proposed by Quantum Corporation, and supported by Intel, that doubles ATA's throughput to 66 MBps.

ATA/100: An updated version of ATA/66 that increases data transfer rates to 100 MBps.

ATA also is called Parallel ATA. Contrast with Serial ATA.

Often abbreviated SATA or S-ATA, an evolution of the Parallel ATA physical storage interface. Serial ATA is a serial link -- a single cable with a minimum of four wires creates a point-to-point connection between devices. Transfer rates for Serial ATA begin at 150MBps. One of the main design advantages of Serial ATA is that the thinner serial cables facilitate more efficient airflow inside a form factor and also allow for smaller chassis designs. In contrast, IDE cables used in parallel ATA systems are bulkier than Serial ATA cables and can only extend to 40cm long, while Serial ATA cables can extend up to one meter.


Thus, SATA is a Serial interface for ATA drives. Thus, ATA drives, which usually have an IDE interface, are not compatible with SATA drives/interfaces.
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old April 11, 2008, 08:58 PM
bushwhacker's Avatar
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Lake of the Woods
Posts: 286
Default looks like a higher capacity/faster drive is a viable option

Reviewing the IBM specs and options (as they have defined the acceptable parameters through the 440BX chipset) - this guide indicates:

Hard-disk drive
6.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
12.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
18.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
20.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
T21, T22
10.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
20.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
32.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
15.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
20.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
30.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
40.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
48.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface
60.0 GB, 2.5-inch, IDE interface

The T21 & T22 have the 440BX chipset.
The T23 has the Intel 830MP System Chipset

Search/review/post to this forum for responses from many experienced users. For example I've come across this statement here :

I have a T20 and it recognizes 40gb & 80gb Hitachi HDDs alright. I have not tested it with a Seagate, but I think it should work.

and here :

> what's the Max size that can be fitted.
1. Virtually all current drives will work. (Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006)

Hardware removal and installation - ThinkPad T20, T21, T22, T23

There is also much talk about noticeable performance boosts using 7200RPM drives.
2.5" drives can vary in thickness - be sure the drive bay can accommodate the size you choose.

Last edited by bushwhacker; April 11, 2008 at 09:03 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old April 12, 2008, 09:28 PM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5
Default Man am I glad I found/joined this Community Forum!!!


This is a great place with some knowledgable people!

Thank you very much for a the detailed response specific to IBM Thinkpads, Bushwacker. Excellent information. I can now move forward with the increase in storage space and without any hesistation. Great link to the T 20 website I might add. Defiinelty a bookmark in my favourites. Of course Hardware Canucks is already there. Guys/Gals, nice place you got here. Stoanee, thank you also.

I look forward to reading here often and hope to contribute what I can.

best regards and thanks again,

Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes