3 HDD laptop for RAID or 2 HDD partitioned raid?


Jun 24, 2010
Hello, I've been looking for quite a while now for a 3 hdd laptop. The reason being is that I would like to have 1 hdd (or SSD) as the main disk with the OS installation and the other 2 hdd will be 2 500GB hdd running on a RAID mirror for security and safely purposes.

Now I found a bunch of Clevo and other "shady" manufacturers out there that make them... so I bought a Clevo... BIG MISTAKE... the touchpad and the keyboard are the worst I've used on a laptop and now I want to return them. Now, I want a big name brand computer maker for this.

So... after searching a bit more, I haven't found anything. So here is what I need from this community. Do you know any manufacturer that MAKES 3 HDD laptop (usually, they have 2 HDD bays and the optical can be converted). Please send me a link if you find it.

... but here is where it gets tricky and I need the input of the tom's hardware community: I was thinking that I could do the following. Get a laptop with only 2 hard drive bays, and have the first hard drive be a 750GB HDD, partition this drive into 250GB for OS installation and the remaining 500GB mirror RAID it with a second physical hdd of 500GB. I mean is this possible, and most important... practical. What are the implecation of doind this? should I just mirror 2 750GB HDD cuz i'll have the same perfomance? I don't like mirroing the OS HDD cuz of slowness it creates. So please, give me your thoughts on this. Thank you all.


Please don't double post the same message in various forums. One posting will suffice.

First, you idea of using a 750GB (250/500) as the boot drive and RAIDing with a second 500GB drive won't work. Even if possible, it would still be a single drive with 2 partitions and would gain no benefit in performance.

For a 2 drive solution, go with a primary SSD and a secondary HDD. Use an external drive as a backup.

For a 3 HDD solution, take a look at the Dell Precision M6700 Mobile as an option:




That is one of the problems with a 3 HDD solution, it will be expensive.

It might be possible to take a 2 HDD system, with eSATA support and add a 3rd external HDD to the system. I don't know if a RAID would be possible with the external drive, however. I am pretty sure that wouldn't work, to be honest with you.


Feb 22, 2007
Col Geek gave real good alternative - go with Internal SSD + HDD and a BU extrenal HDD.

You didn't really state total "storage" needs.
I do NOT recommend Raid1 for personal desktops let alone a Laptop. Raid 1 was deveopled primarily for Server applications and used enterprise drives. Raid 1 ONLY protects from ONE failure Mode - single HDD failure. There are many more failure modes that it does NOT protect against. Reason Most recommend "true" back up is two seperate drives, the 2nd being an external drive. Newer HDDs are NOT as robust as many of the older HDDs and are more prone to failures caused by bumps and jars - OPPs this is a laptop.

For a laptop the best option is two SSDs, a 128 gig for OS + Programs and say a 256 Gig SSD for storage - providing that satisfies your need. This is How My laptop (a Samsung RF711-SO1) is configured. a 128 gig Curcial M4 for OS + programs plus a 256 gig M4 for storage. I augment the storage limitation with a 32 and 64 gig Thumbdrive Plus a 1 TB external WD USB 3HDD (HD for BU). SSDs are MUCH less likely to die a premature death do to a "Bump" than a HDD.

That Guy Zeb

Oct 20, 2014
Get a hard drive caddy. I've used hard drive caddies in almost all of my laptops.
I take out the cd drive (which is almost universally a SATA connection, equal to the internal hard drive connection in speed).
Most caddies cost about $15 and include the adapter. Here's a link one I just found even cheaper on Amazon:


Still make sure to check the size for your machine.

So if you get a 2 bay laptop like and HP DV7 or Acer V3 you're all set. I actually have to build another one of those machines soon.