Calluna – Callunacard 260MB review

a hard drive in a PC Card (PCMCIA) package
Photo of Calluna – Callunacard 260MB
£179 + VAT

In these difficult days of over-complicated software and hard-to-configure hardware, a piece of kit which does exactly what it is supposed to is a rare and precious thing. So when the cynical old hacks here at IT Reviews came across this Type II PC Card hard drive which starts working as soon as it’s plugged into a computer, we were pretty impressed. When, on further investigation, we discovered that it works equally well with Windows CE, 9x and NT machines, some of us began to weep with joy. And when we finally learned that this marvellous little device was designed and manufactured in Great Britain we let up a hearty cheer, toasted Her Majesty’s good health and broke into a spirited chorus of Land of Hope and Glory.

Of the countless items of IT paraphernalia we look at, very few work as well as this. It’s simply a 260MB hard disk drive secreted inside a PC Card, but the beauty of it is that it just works. Whether you’re using a CE based handheld device or a full blown cutting edge laptop running Windows NT, you simply plug the card in, switch the power on and you’ve got a 260MB hard disk drive. There’s no driver software supplied, CE doesn’t need any and NT/9x installs its own in a matter of seconds on the first start up. If you’re using a CE based sub-notebook, the Callunacard very usefully provides a reasonably high capacity internal hard drive. This means that you no longer have to rely on volatile memory or inconvenient CF cards for permanent data storage.

If you’re using a proper laptop computer then an extra 260MB of drive space will be fairly inconsequential. However, the Callunacard provides a good system for backing up your important data files. Also, the card is useful for storing sensitive data because it can be removed and secured so that if the laptop is stolen or even just snooped, your secret information not only remains secret but is also easily retrievable.

Company: Calluna

Contact: 01592 630 810


Verdict
It's quite hard to find fault with such a fundamentally useful and simple piece of equipment. But for the sake of a balanced review we should point out that the Callunacard will eat into your battery life, particularly on CE machines which were never meant to power hard disk drives. Other than this, the device is flawless and comes highly recommended.