too cool for words
by Rick Smith (July 8, 1999)
I just received the recently introduced Iomega clik! 40 megabyte drive. In less than half an hour, I opened the box, read the manual, installed the software, attached the laptop to the docking station (for the CD-ROM install), actually copied some files on the clik! drive and have started writing this article. It is impressive to see this most unique product that works so quickly and easily, right out of the box.
For those of you that don't know what an Iomega clik! drive is, it is a removable 40 megabyte hard drive that fits into a single Type II (5mm) slot on a laptop. Instead of having to "LapLink" or "parallel port network" two laptops together, now you can quickly transfer 40 megabytes of files between them. You only remove the media each time, like a tiny floppy, instead of having to shutdown the PC card/PCMCIA slot if you used a conventional Type III hard drive, which saves time.
Included in the retail package, is an brushed aluminum case that is about the size of a small cigarette case. It looks so great that I almost hate to use it. The inside of this case is rubberized to protect the drive mechanics and a single media cartridge.
Vendor Although the outside of the box recommends a Pentium computer with a 4X CD-ROM drive, I installed the clik! on a IBM Thinkpad 755CE (486/100) on a Dock I (2X CD-ROM). Although some of the graphic transitions during the installation were a bit slow, the installation moved right along. In that sub half hour, I had to connect the docking station, get the key, etc., so I feel that if you buy an Iomega clik! at a store and arrive home, you can leisurely get everything together and be up and running in about 20 minutes. I am sure that your time may vary with different laptops and in fact Iomega warns that you may encounter problems with laptops running NT and that the clik! drive may not fit into some PC Card (PCMCIA) slots due to laptop design. I had no trouble fitting my clik! drive into the slots of an IBM 730T pen tablet, IBM 750P monochrome convertible pen computer or IBM 360PE color convertible pen computer and even my trusty Compaq Concerto pen computer.
The Iomega clik! package includes backup software, but it will be interesting to see how well this drive works with V-Communications new AutoSave product, that works external and internal hard drives, including Iomega's larger capacity Zip and Jaz drives. The clik! drive is available for under 200 dollars and media is priced under ten dollars each.
I only wish that clik! drives were integrated into digital cameras. The low power consumption (sleeps after 3 seconds of inactivity), good speed (600K per second), low cost per megabyte (currently about 25 cents) and small removable size (2"x2" media), of Iomega's clik! drive would make it a natural for today's small, lightweight, digital cameras.
© 1999 Rick Smith All rights reserved.