Decide what you really need for an external drive. Do you want a networkable drive that all machines on a network can access (even when running a mix of MAC, Windows and Linux operating systems?) then a Network Hard Drive is what you should consider. Many of the Network drives also support a direct USB connection as well. They are on the average of about $1 USD per GB of storage, except at the upper end the 250-300 GB are slightly more.
I have a SmartDisk and have installed a number of NetDisks and everyone really likes them. A poor mans file server without the need to manage anything. If you need to make a direct connection, hook up to USB and go. Take the drive with you or hide it in the closet if utility room so when your house gets broken into and someone steals you computer(s) you still have all your important files, pictures, music etc. For around $130 US you can usually find a 120 GB Network drive. Hey even my wife thinks everyone should have one of these!!
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