Jump to content

External Hard Drives Question


Recommended Posts

Hi Brian,

Thanks for all the helpful advice. I have a MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2014), 2.8 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3, with 1 TB flash storage that is nearly full because I have way too many photos (and raw files). I want to get two external drives -- one for time machine and one for all my photos. I have to admit that I've never backed-up with Time Machine, but I do back up to Crashplan. But, I am ready to commit to doing better with my backing up... I'm going to want to have the time machine external drive back up my computer's hard drive and the new external with photos.

I've seen that you like the G-Drives. I am thinking about getting a 1 TB external for my photos. Is this G-Drive that is exclusive to Apple (http://www.apple.com/shop/product/HF113ZM/B/g-technology-1tb-g-drive-mobile-portable-hard-drive-usb-30) the same as the one you recommended http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=cart_accessories&A=details&Q=&sku=1009518&is=REG&bundleId=1009518REG (other than the color)?

For the external for Time Machine, does the G-Drive with 3 TB make sense? http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1024612-REG/g_technology_0g03124_g_drive_3tb_7200_thunderbolt_usb3_sata3.html

Thanks for your input. 


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Any EHD can work with the Mac, it only depends on if it's partitioned and formatted with the Mac file system. 

Manufacturers know that people are willing to pay more for a Mac, so often you will see a "Mac Version" of a HD for $30-$50 more. It's complete and utter BS. The are banking on you spending more for "The Mac Version." LOL!! It's pure profit based on ones naiveness. 

I like G-Drives for the hardware that they use. They usually aren't the $79 special from a big box store. Coming Mac formatted is just a bonus. If any Windows users want to use a G-Drive, there is a process that you that takes literally 5 min to convert it over. No extra software needed. It's built into the OS. Same thing with converting a Windiws drive to the Mac file system. 

A good rule of thumb when it comes to time machine is the EHD should be 1.5 times the Data that you are backing up. So if you have a 1TB internal HD, that's almost full, you really should look at least a 2TB drive.

Of course, if your internal HD is around 500-700MB full, you could get away with a 1TB drive. It's not a hard and fast rule. That said, the larger the TM EHD, the more wiggle-room you have in data recovery. The reason is when the TM drive starts to get full, it deletes files and folders from the oldest backup to make room.

In addition, when you go to configure a TM backup, it's best to EXCLUDE ANY OTHER EXTERNAL DRIVES. Things can go really bad if you have a 3TB EHD and a 1TB TM EHD and you tell Time Machine to backup your whole Mac. So in short, just use your TM EHD to backup the internal Mac HD. 

Make sense?

Time Machine is so friggin' easy to use. When you plug in a new EHD, the Mac OS pops up with a question,

"Use this drive for Time Machine?" If it's the Drive meant for TM, tell it "Yes." 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The $79.99 Black G-Drive is probably a slower 5400 RPM drive, which is fine for TM. The one for $99 is a faster 7200RPM Drive. 

What I've done with my iMac is to have a 1TB TM EHD and one 4TB G-Drive for my photos and important files. I then have TM just backup the Inernal Macintosh HD. 

So my recommendation is to get two EHDs. One for data and one to backup the internal HD. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks. Do you back up your EHD that has your photos and important files?

Do you keep the EHD that you use for TM always connected? I use my laptop all over the place. Is it ok just to connect the TM EHD at night?


Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you are getting a new Mac, I'd use the Thunderbolt port. The nice part with that G-Drive is that it has a Thunderbolt Port AND a USB 3.0 port. 

I don't edit photos on a laptop. I have a Mac Desktop. My TM drive is always connected, but not always power it on. I'm more on my iPhone than computer these days. But to answer your question, you could hook up your laptop nightly for a TM backup. Of course, the benefit to TM, is if you screw up and delete something, you have a better chance of getting it back, as long as it's in the TM backup  That said, nightly is fine. Hell, I go months, but I'm not shooting a bunch of sessions every week either.

I do have a second HD that I clone the main drive, but it's not a G-Drive. It's just a EHD that I built myself with a old 2TB HD that I had. I just clone my photos to it. Document files, the little I have, get backed up to Dropbox. 

Honestly, I've been 2nd shooting lately and really haven't had my own gig in the last year or so. In fact, I'm almost ready to end this whole "Pro-Photography" thing. Don't have time for it with a day job. So I'm not the best example with how to do things. :) Asking me what *I* do might cause you serious issues. LMAO. But I accept if things go horribly wrong it's my own fault. I'm not going to go to a group and beg for help if something bad does happen. 

Now, when I do have gigs, I'm a little more paranoid. Cards get pulled out of rotation and images are copied from them, never moved. I don't reformat and use my CF cards until my Wedding / Gig is delivered to the client. The 2nd HD is used more, etc. 

Having multiple copies of files with at least one off-site backup is a good thing. Producing ACTUAL PRINTS is also another way to "backup."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...