Silverstone Treasure TS01B 2.5" Enclosure

Written by Joe Martin

April 27, 2008 | 08:53

Tags: #25 #25in #25-inch #drive-enclosures #enclosure #evaluation #hard-drive #hdd #review #rfid

Companies: #silverstone #test

Treasures Series TS01B

Now, I have to admit that I had a moment of disappointment when I finally got a chance to test the TS01B. Here’s why.

The TS01B is incredibly easy to use – you take out two screws, slot the hard drive in and then screw the lid back on after lining the slots up. It’s only the tip of the drive enclosure that comes out and there’s no tray under the drive to support it, but that’s actually all right because the fit is so snug that it doesn’t matter. There are two very long screws that go in the tip of the enclosure and hold the whole thing together.

The problems came however when we wanted to get the installed drive working. You see, if you want to actually use the RFID functions of the enclosure then you have to format the drive before you put it in – if it has any existing information on it then it won’t offer up any protection.

Granted, that might not be a huge problem for many people, but it is a little bit annoying given that the enclosure is otherwise just very plug and play. If you have existing data on your 2.5” drive which you want to keep safely on your RFID protected drive then you’ll need to take the data off the drive first and put it somewhere else, format the 2.5” drive, put it in the enclosure and set up the RFID tags – then put the data back on your newly protected drive.

Silverstone Treasure TS01B 2.5

Our main disappointment however stems from the RFID technology itself, which requires you to actually touch the fob to the RFID symbol on the enclosure – you can’t allow access from a distance. Now that is pretty good in itself as it means that you won’t accidentally open your data to everyone if you leave it on a desk and happen to walk past at the wrong moment. On the other hand though you need to get the RFID fob in just the right spot which can be fiddly.

We also have to question the supposed security of this system. The idea behind the RFID tagging system is that if somebody does steal your drive containing your sensitive data then they at least can’t access it unless they’ve stolen your keys too – which is unlikely. The problem is though that if someone does steal your keys and your hard drive then they’ll know exactly how to get at your information because the fobs are all clearly labelled as Silverstone RFID tags. It doesn’t take some genius cat burglar to work it all out.

Also, bear in mind that most people aren’t concerned about corporate espionage and so on – they use security like this for piece of mind and shielding things from the prying eyes of friends, families and fiancés. In other words, people who have easy access to your person and would be fine to ‘borrow’ your keys and see what you’ve been hiding.

Now yes, I admit it – I am a very grumpy person and I have incredibly low expectations of the human race. To adapt one of my favourite philosophical quotes; “I trust people as far as I can throw them, even if I can throw them pretty far – and throw them I shall!”. Extra points if you can cite the reference by the way.

Silverstone Treasure TS01B 2.5 Silverstone Treasure TS01B 2.5

The point is though that it is a little silly for Silverstone to label the tag so clearly no matter how you look at it. It would make much more sense to have a plain black keyring for the RFID tag to be house in.

Conclusions

We like the TS01B. It’s a good little 2.5-inch drive enclosure despite our concerns, mainly because it’s simple and to the point while still adding something a little new in the form of the RFID technology. In the little wallet that comes with it, the TS01B manages to look both fashionable and discrete.

There are a few minor annoyances in that the drive has to be blank going in, but that’s a fair trade-off for the security when you think about it. The enclosure has only a mini-USB port for connectivity (which means you're limited to transfer rates of around 33MB/sec based on our makeshift file transfer tests), plus a DC socket, but it does come with all the relevant cables. There’s a little screwdriver provided too, which is good and the whole thing feels very well made. It’s lightweight and well put together.

In fact, all you really need to do is take the stickers off the key rings and paint the fobs to disguise the fact that they go with the enclosure and you’d have a pretty good drive enclosure that should do you right for a long time. The only downfall for some is the price, but then if you're after a plain hard drive enclosure, you wouldn't be considering an enclosure with RFID technology like Silverstone's TS01B.

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