A hard drive is the storage device on which your computer saves files programs. Not all laptop hard drives are the same.A hard drive can come in many different capacities, and the hard drive itself can be mounted at different positions around the computer, depending on the model of laptop. If you need to remove of replace the laptop's hard drive, it is important to know where the drive can be located within the unit.
Bottom Mounted Hard Drive
The first place to look for the hard drive is underneath the laptop. Flip the laptop over and look for the little hard drive symbol that will be engraved in the laptop's casing to signify its location. For these built in hard drives, you will need to unscrew the plastic cover with a small Phillips head screw driver in order to expose the system's hard drive.
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Front Mounted Hard Drive
Yet another location in which many laptop models house their hard drives in directly in front of the unit. Flip the laptop over and locate the front of the computer. There will be a plastic cover which you should be able to slide out of place. Depending on the model of laptop, the cover may be screwed in which Phillips head screw that you will need to remove first. After taking off the plastic cover, locate the thin pull tab on the hard drive and gently pull the drive forward if you need to remove it. Make sure to note which side is face up as you will need to reinstall the drive in the exact same position or it will not work properly.
Side Moutned Hard Drive
The most common type of hard drive is the side mounted slide hard drive, which the majority of new laptops use. On either the right or left side of the laptop, generally the side opposite the CD drive, there will be a small cut out section of the laptop case that can be slide out of the side of the computer. This is the hard drive for the laptop. There may be one or two screws holding this type of hard drive in place; however, some model's side hard drive will be self contained and connected to the plastic section of the laptop's external shell.
Hard Drive Location on the Operating System
Most people have heard of a hard drive, and may even know what it looks like. However, many people are not aware of where the hard drive appears in the computer's operating system. To search through or save a file to the computer's hard drive, click on "Start," then click on "My Computer," and finally double click the "C." Some computer's may have more than one drive in the "My Computer" section, in this case, both of the drives are saved on the laptop's hard drive. Any drive that is located under the "Hard Drive Disk" heading will be stored on the laptop's hard drive.
External Hard Drive
In addition to the built-in hard drive that every laptop has, there are external hard drives that can be purchased separately to increase the storage capacity of the computer. Normally, an external hard drive will be attached to the computer via the USB ports that are behind, or some times on the side of the laptop. To access the external hard drive through the computer's operating system, go to "My Computer" and then click on the drive that says "Removable." There will be a letter which labels the drive, but this can change depending on the model of the laptop. For example, one laptop may say "Removable E: Drive," and another may say "Removable F: Drive;" these are just different ways for a computer to signify an external memory drive is attached to the laptop.