ioSafe Rugged Portable external hard drive

This rugged hard drive promises a lot -- but how should we test it?

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ioSafe Rugged Portable
  • ioSafe Rugged Portable
  • ioSafe Rugged Portable
  • ioSafe Rugged Portable

Pros

  • Rated against almost any calamity
  • Speedy USB 3.0 interface
  • Comes with $2500 data recovery

Cons

  • Pricier than a regular external drive
  • Bulky and heavy
  • Not fireproof

Bottom Line

ioSafe's Rugged Portable sacrifices a bit of bulk and weight to add some serious protection to a fast USB 3.0 hard drive. We put it through some grueling tests and it didn't skip a beat. If data reliability is important to you, we think this drive justifies its premium price tag.

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ioSafe is a company that specialises in offering seriously sturdy storage: we're talking fireproof and waterproof external desktop drives, fireproofed internal hard drives, and server-grade rugged backup systems.

We've got our hands on the ioSafe Rugged Portable, a much smaller but no less impressive counterpart to the rest of the company's line-up.

You can buy the Rugged Portable in 250GB, 500GB, 750GB or 1TB capacities with a 5400RPM traditional spinning-disk hard drive, and SSD versions are on the way — promising faster performance and even more resistance to shocks and damage. Both aluminium and titanium enclosures are available, with Kensington locks milled into the body for security's sake.

ioSafe claims that the Rugged Portable can take a lot of punishment. It conforms to plenty of aspects of a particular United States Military Standard called MIL-STD 810G.

ioSafe Rugged Portable hard drive review The ioSafe Rugged Portable is milled from a single block of metal, and feels incredibly solid. The USB 3.0 connector may look flimsy, but it plugs in securely.

  • Full Metal Jacket Technology — CNC machined enclosure from a solid billet of aluminum (Al) or titanium (Ti) alloy. Crush resistant to up to 5000 lbs (Ti) and 2500 lbs (Al) yet weighs as little as a pound (Al).
  • Full Suspension Drive Technology — Full suspension in all six axes of motion. Optimized for data loss protection from drop and shock of 20' drops (SSD version) and 10' drops (500GB HDD version or 1TB HDD requires optional drive skin) per MIL-STD-810G Method 516.5.
  • HydroSafe Technology — Waterproof yet heat conducting barrier to protect against data loss in up to 10' for 3 days in fresh water or salt water (aluminum version) or 30' for 3 days (titanium version) per IP68. Protects data even when USB or FW plug is in. No requirement for a connector cap to retain data protection.
  • ChemSafe Technology — Full immersion in diesel fuel, oils, hydraulic fluids, aircraft fuels, 12' depth for 1 hour with no data loss per MIL-STD-810G Method 504
  • EnviroSafe Technology — Continuous exposure to UV, blowing sand, blowing dust, rain, salt fog, icing or freezing rain, 24 hours with no data loss per MIL-STD-810G Methods 505.4, 506.4, 509.4 and 510.
  • AltiSafe Technology — High altitude operation. 15K ft. (Alum.) and 30K ft. (SSD and Ti.) rated altitudes per MIL-STD-810G Method 500.4

We're going to put this drive through as many of the above tests as we can, apart from the altitude operation — we don't have a private jet (or a mountain in Australia that's high enough). ioSafe is also willing to let us test the Rugged Portable beyond these parameters, though, to see how much it takes to stop such a disaster-proof drive from working. Check back soon for a comprehensive review of the ioSafe Rugged Portable!

Do you have any ideas of what we should do to see how strong and rugged the iOsafe Rugged Portable is? How should we put it to the test? Post in the comments below.

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