A Low-Cost USB 3.0 2.5-Inch Disk Enclosure That Works Fine With Linux
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 26 January 2016 at 09:07 AM EST. 14 Comments
If you are looking for a low-cost 2.5-inch disk enclosure that plays fine under Linux, here's one I recently picked up and has been working fine.

The wife wanted another disk enclosure for backing up some of her work and what I ended up going for was the Inateck 2.5 Inch USB 3.0 Hard Drive Disk HDD External Enclosure.

This Inateck disk enclosure will work fine with 2.5-inch HDDs and SSDs, is completely tool-free, has a built-in on/off switch, and fulfills its duties as a disk enclosure. This was the first time I've used anything branded Inateck.

At Amazon (link above) the disk enclosure costs just $12.99 USD. The enclosure is made of ABS plastic, but doesn't feel flimsy at all, is very easy to work with, and is indeed tool-free. While it's durable, I don't know that I'd go with this enclosure if I were to be carrying it around everywhere within a laptop bag.

The product listing just shows the operating system support as "Windows 2000/Windows Me/Windows 98/ XP /Vista/ 7/ 8, Mac OS 9.1/10.8.4 above", but it's been working out fine on the Ubuntu and Fedora systems we've tried thus far.

Inside the Inateck 2.5-inch USB 3.0 enclosure I installed the Seagate 500GB 7200RPM laptop hard drive. With being a hard drive, it's difficult to see just how well the enclosure performs for USB 3.0 speeds compared to a high-performance SSD, but the performance from my usage thus far seems to put it right on par with all of the other basic USB 3 enclosures I've tested thus far. The Seagate ST500LM021 is SATA 3.0 compliant, spins at 7200RPM, and has a 32MB cache while costing just $44 USD.

Thus all in for this 500GB of external USB 3.0 storage is just ~$56 and the enclosure works fine with Linux. Just wanted to pass along this budget enclosure recommendation in case others are looking for a Linux-friendly disk enclosure. If anyone has any other questions about it or this Seagate HDD, feel free to bring it up by commenting on this article in the forums. You can find the enclosure at Amazon.com.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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