By Paul McCollum
ioSafe has made a name for itself by creating hard drives that can withstand all manner of natural disasters. By survive, it means that once you extract the internal disk from the charred or flooded rubble, all your data should still be there, even if your house or office isn’t. It’s the personal computing version of an airplane’s ‘black box’. Until lately, these indestructible vaults were meant to be nailed down or chained in place with security cables. The extra material required to insulate the drive from water and fire adds a great deal of bulk.
ioSafe’s Rugged Portable drive is meant to be a more travel-friendly version of the desktop-oriented SoloPRO. It is much closer to the same size as standard external hard drives, but it can easily fit into a laptop bag or carried in one hand from place to place. Being a much smaller drive, ioSafe did have to trim off some of the protective features, yet the drive still managed to survive in all three durability tests: water immersion; fire; and blunt force (basically, shooting the drive with a shotgun). The Rugged Portable also came out on top in the real-world performance test, thanks to the 2.5″ Seagate 7200-rpm drive and USB 3.0. Read a detailed review at Everything USB to find out if all these features and performance warrant the high cost per gigabyte.