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Expand the Storage Space in Your Computer With a 120GB Solid-State Drive

A solid-state drive is a storage device that holds data in electronic flash or solid-state memory. Once reserved mostly for smartphones and tablets, they are also proliferating in laptop and even desktop computers. These particular drives have exactly 120GB of storage space, and they are available on eBay for various affordable prices.

Why should you buy a solid-state drive?

A typical solid-state drive consists of something called "NAND flash" that stores data in a large array of electronic cells. The drive is based on semiconductor technology. It has no sensitive mechanical parts that are vulnerable to damage and take time to start up. This means that the typical solid-state drive is fast, responsive, reliable, and produces minimal noise. A solid-state drive is designed to load content quicker. By placing the entire operating system on the drive, you can significantly reduce boot-up times. Another common use of a solid-state drive is to reduce loading times in video games. Large, persistent open-world games may feel more seamless as assets are loaded in quicker. Solid-state drives can function as a main drive or a secondary drive.

What should you look for when choosing a used drive?

A solid-state drive has a limited number of program and erase cycles before it begins to affect the integrity of the memory. It will primarily wear out when written to and not read from. You should consider how often the drive has been used before purchase. Some drives use a technique called "wear leveling" that prolongs the life of the drive by distributing data evenly across the drive. If one block has less wear, then the controller will try to store data in that block. This way, one block will not wear out faster than the others.

How do you choose the right solid-state drive?

No two solid-state drives are exactly the same. They may differ in these key respects:

  • Internal versus external: An internal drive is essentially the main drive of the computer although it is possible to have multiple internal drives. It fits directly into the internal SATA or SAS interface. An external drive typically offers a secondary storage option. It typically connects through a USB port. If it's internal, then you will need to pay attention to the size of the drive. A 2.5-inch drive is reserved for laptops and other computers with small form factors. A 3.5-inch drive is intended for desktop computers.
  • Data transfer speeds: Each drive will have a sequential read and write speed that tells you how good it is at transferring data.
  • Data security: Some solid-state drives support security features such as AES 256-bit hardware-based encryption.
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