Seagate BlackArmor WS 110 External Storage and Backup System

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A few days ago I took a look at the Seagate BlackArmor PS 110 2.5″ external hard drive, today I’ve got the BlackArmor WS 110. This drive utilizes a 3.5″ 1TB hard drive inside of the unit, and features both eSATA and USB connections along with everything that the PS 110 can do. So let’s just jump right in…


The box for the BlackArmor WS 110 lists the specs and features, along with pictures, inside we find the drive itself protected and an accessory box.

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Unpacking everything we find the WS 110 itself, along with power supply, USB cable and stand, but there is no eSATA cable which I find odd. The WS 110 features an eSATA connection, but yet they don’t give you a cable to utilize it.

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The Seagate BlackArmor WS 110 is black in color with silver accents, it’s wedge shaped, sort of. On the back we find the power connection, Kensignton style lock, USB interface and eSATA interface. The housing is plastic, but it seems well made.

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The BlackArmor WS 110 can be mounted horizontally or vertically with the included stand, the stand just clips onto the housing.

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Specifications:

BlackArmor WS 110

Model: ST310005BWA1E2-RK

Business-grade backup solution for PCs and servers
Business-grade software, a reliable Seagate hard drive and incredibly fast eSATA  / USB connectivity make the BlackArmor WS 110 drive a powerful external storage and backup solution for your digital assets. The BlackArmor Backup software, preloaded on the drive, offers full-system backup, which includes the operating system, all of your programs, setting, email… Everything! Plus, you can choose to safeguard your backed up files with AES 256-bit government-grade encryption.

If you accidentally delete a file or lose data due to a computer crash, you can easily recover individual files or revert your entire system back in time before the problem occurred, all with the included SafetyDrill+ recovery software.

The Try & Decide feature allows you to create a secure, controlled temporary workspace on your computer. You can try out new programs or change system settings without having to worry about losing data or damaging your system. When finished experimenting, simply decide to keep the changes or discard the recent activity as if it never happened.

The BlackArmor WS 110 drive has the option to lie fat or stand vertically to blend into your work environment.

Highlights:
-eSATA and USB 2.0 for the fastest available data transfer rate.
-Incremental and full-system, automatic backup for PC.
-Backs up open files for greater protection.
-SafetyDrill+ recovery software (Bare Metal Restore).
-File and folder-level encryption for backed up data.
-Utilizes the same software package as all other BlackArmor products for ease of installation and management.
-Built with a reliable Seagate hard drive.
-Supports Windows XP and Windows Vista.
-Lies fat or stands vertical to complement your workspace.
-5-year limited warranty.

Product Dimensions (Standing):
Horiz x Vert x Depth – 1.33” x 6.89” x 6.77” (33.70mm x 175.00mm x 172.00mm)
Weight: 3.06 lb (1.39 kg)

Performance:
-7200RPM
-eSATA: up to 3Gb/s
-USB 2.0: up to 480Mb/s

Inside the Box:  
-BlackArmor WS110
-BlackArmor Backup software pre-loaded on the drive (Windows Only)
-Quick start guide
-Base stand
-Attachable feet
-Power supply
-USB cable

System Requirements 
-USB 2.0 or eSATA port
-Windows Vista Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate, or Business Service Pack-1.
-Windows XP Home, Professional, Media Center Edition Service Pack-2


Here’s a picture of a 3.5″ hard drive with the BlackArmor to show size, I wanted to take it apart, but I really couldn’t find a way to do it easily and without possibly breaking the plastic housing.

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The BlackArmor WS 110 does feature a power and activity LED, the Seagate logo lights up solid when powered on, and slowly fades from bright to dim while accessing the drive.

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Here’s the results for testing with ATTO, I’ve got a few drives included for comparison, and I’ve included results for both eSATA and USB interfaces of the BlackArmor WS 110.

Imation Apollo 500GB 2.5″
Samsung 1TB 3.5″
Western Digital Green 500GB 3.5″
Seagate 160GB 2.5″

atto 1tb samsung atto apollo 500gb atto ba esata atto ba usb atto black armor atto seagate 160gb atto wd green 500gb

Ok, first up I’ve got testing with SiSoft Sandra 2009 SP3 Removable Storage Benchmark.

sandra graph

The WD Green drive I have is pretty fast… but the BlackArmor WS 110 using the eSATA interface is faster than the Samsung and the external drives I’ve got.

Next up is testing with Diskbench and the time it takes to Copy to and Copy from the external drives I’ve got on hand. I used a 350MB .AVI Video file for the testing. Lower time is better of course.

diskbench times graph

As expected the eSATA connection is the best, but using the USB connection isn’t bad either, about 13 seconds to write the file to the drive.

Here’s the Transfer rates for the test, higher is better of course.

diskbench xfer graph

Again we see the eSATA connection has some impressive speeds.

Obviously the eSATA connection is the better choice when it comes to transferring files to and from the WS 110, but the USB isn’t bad either, it’s comparable to others out there in regards to speeds.

I’m not going to go into the interface of the WS 110, it’s the same as the PS 110, so it’s not worth repeating it all again, you can check out my review of the Seagate BlackArmor PS 110 HERE to learn about the interface. Though I should mention the interface is easy to use, and it’s a very valuable tool for protecting your data.

The price for the WS 110 is listed as $159.99 on the Seagate website, though looking online I found it for as low as $139.99. Still though some might consider a bit expensive for a 1TB hard drive, but you’ve got to consider what it is and what it can do for you. Buying just a 1TB hard drive will not get you what comes with the WS 110, and all it can do for you in regards to protecting your data. In the end I think it’s well worth it.

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Conclusion:
The BlackArmor WS 110 is an excellent product that can truly be an invaluable tool for home or business users. The WS 110 offers an easy way to protect your data and your computer. It’s easy to use, well made and looks great.

Considering you’ve got to carry the power supply around with you, I wouldn’t consider it very portable, but then again I don’t think it’s supposed to be, if you want portable then you should look at the BlackArmor PS 110.

The WS 110 is a great product overall and I can easily recommend it to anyone looking for an easy way to protect their data.

9 recommended5

Pros:
+Nicely made
+Good software included
+Dual interface
+eSATA is fast
+Easy to use

Cons:
-No eSATA cable included
-Expensive

Grades:  
Overall score-9-10
Design score-9-10
Performance score-10-10
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  • James King

    Will this contraption work as a hard drive for DirecTV HD DVR, or does it have to work with a windows os?

  • http://donnedwards.openaccess.co.za Donn Edwards

    I’m worried about temperature buildup and resulting hard drive damage. Does the drive have anything inside to help dissipate heat? There doesn’t seem to be any active cooling fan.

  • Bill

    I just installed a WS 110 and my pc now runs very slow and tends to lock up frequently

  • Dale

    I have had to return mine after 2 months, drive failed. I have not gotten a new drive that has worked yet, it has been returned 3 times, each “new” drive is a refurb and immediately fails the SeaTools tests. I have now owned this drive for 5 months and have not been able to use it, certainly can’t rely on it with business data.

  • http://www.GregoryBeckAppraisals.com Greg

    I owned mine 6 mos and just sent it back for replacement. The replacement arrived and right off the bat it didn’t work. Called support got the same old run this test and that test and then call us back. Had the same problem with their Mirra hard drive I had that and it always gave me problems too. I think my relationship with Seagage is over, Can anyone recommend another back up hard drive?

  • Gavin

    Absolutely unreliable. Owned 2 now and both packed up within 3 to 6 months of average use. A very expensive paper weight and also a questionable warranty.

  • tikdoff

    My experience with seagagte drives is pure misery at best. The first one I bought was a 500mb freeagent portable drive. It crashed one fine morning and turned into a little metronome that clicked super efficiently. I contacted seagate and was given the runaround and eventually after 2 weeks, I gave up. Then again I bought a seagate ws11o black armour esata drive which also happened to be the only one available in the store at that point, purely becos there were no other esata options I could opt for. I take it home and discover that there is no esata cable to connect and when I did buy an esata cable, the drive wouldnt connect everytime. It would connect and disconnect randomly and then at times, in spite of all the troubleshooting it just wouldnt hook up to my new windows 7 OS laptop. I go to thier website for help and find out that the little patch they introduced to solve the connection error, and it leads to a dead link for an executable patch file. I tried to reach seagate and yet again, I get asked to check the connection ports, plugs, electricity fuseboards and even the transformer outside my home. Anything but the fact that they sell crap and will do anything to wash thier hands off the junk they sell. No more seagate for me. My Western Digital drives have worked ever so smoothly since I bought them 3 years ago in spite of all the wear and tear. The dudes at Seagate needs to pull up thier sagging techno undies and get cracking to sell better products and offer better service. As far as Im concerned if someone said Seagate…I’d go ‘what the hell is that?’

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