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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Added 2 H/Ds - how do I manage them?


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Dabullz

 
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MacForums virgin - be gentle

I have used my Macs for the standard uses; music, photos, videos, iTunes.

I have decided to try and integrate all of my family's photos, music, videos on our Mac Pro - it previously had one 750 gig h/d and I have now added 2 more.

I had thought that I would partition and/or designate drives to handle specific tasks i.e. one drive for iTunes, one drive for photos/videos, one drive for general computing.

I installed SL on all three drives; it appears that I am now lost. Can I have 3 drives for 3 purposes? Do I want this arrangement? Or do I want to have the 3 physical drives act as 1 virtual drive? Is there where RAID rears its head?

Any other information regarding my arrangement would be welcomed. I am truly treading new ground.

Thanks for any and all help!

DB
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pigoo3

 
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One way to think about managing these hard drives is making sure you have a backup hard drive! If you don't have a backup...one of these Mac Pro hard drives could or should be a backup.

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RadioSaigon

 
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I may be completely misunderstanding your OP... but, you state:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabullz
...I installed SL on all three drives;
If I have misunderstood, this is where it comes in.

Am I right in assuming you have ONE Mac Pro which has one 750Gb HDD, to which you have added two additional HDD's?

If that is the case, I can't imagine any reason or need to install the OS-X to those additional drives at all! Quite counter-productive I would have thought. From your OP, I perceive your need (and motivation for adding the new drives) to be storage -you need more room to consolidate and store the files from several computers on one computer. If so, simply reformat the NEW drives (that you wish to use as storage), give them a name you'll recognise, check in the Finder where you should now see your drives and then use them as you would any other folder on your system! NB: doing so (reformatting) will erase the unnecessary OS installations you have. You'll wind up with 3 separate drives on your system and lots of space, to which you can assign whatever tasks you consider appropriate.

Creating a RAID array is a potential you might like to explore -however I personally would not. I've had RAID arrays on internal drives before and found it did not meet my needs or expectations. I wanted copious quantities of storage space and wound up with 1/2 of what I expected. Were I to go down the RAID route again in future, it would be on a dedicated RAID enclosure separate from the PC.

Now, if I've completely misunderstood the intent of your OP, I do apologise! I'm sure there'll be others along soon that can provide the information necessary.

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Dabullz

 
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I have one Mac Pro and now 3 separate physical drives.

Yes I installed SL (and iLife) on all 3 drives. Again, I am unsure how to do this!

I have 5 children; I have a HUGE need for space to hold all the photos, videos, and iTunes purchases we incur.

I installed the 3 drives to give me the space; my question is how? For instance, I use iPhoto. On what drive do I open iPhoto? How do I "put" all my photos/videos on one drive while trying to get all my iTunes purchases "put" on another?

Can I dedicate one drive for iTunes only? If so, when I plug my iPhone in or make purchases on iTunes, how do I "toggle" to that specific drive?

Please forgive me if I am not articulating my desires in such a way that an answer is easily given.

I appreciate any help!

DB
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RadioSaigon

 
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OK.

First, as I stated originally you DO NOT need the Snow Leopard OS or iLife installed on each of your 3 drives. Both need only be on only one drive -the "main" drive if you like, probably called Macintosh HD on your system. For the time being, we'll assume that everything needed (OS and iLife) are installed there correctly and working as expected. With that in mind, we are going to change nothing on that drive.

Now, your two new drives have redundant OS's and iLife packages installed. There's no benefit to retaining those on your new drives, so 1st step will be to reformat those drives, which will erase all the information on them and return them to an "as new" status. To do that, go to Disk Utility (search for that using Spotlight -it'll probably be the 1st result returned once you start typing), where you'll see a list of all the HDD's on your system in the left column.



This is an image of what mine looks like. You'll see that the top item is: 251 GB APPLE SSD TS25... which I have named WingCommander. On your system, the top line will identify the drive installed on your system and probably be named Macintosh HD. That is the drive we do NOT wish to change!!!

The next drive in my setup is: 2 TB WD which I have partitioned into two, named DataStore and Bootable Clones. On your system, you will see the identification of your two new drives.

Select the 1st one, then on the right, click on the Erase tab. Select the Format drop-down to Mac OS Extended (Journaled), give the drive a name that means something to you and click Erase.

When that process ends, select the 2nd drive and repeat the process.

When all that is finished, your 2 new drives will be empty and ready to accept whatever data you choose to store on them. You'll be able to see them and work with them in the left column of your Finder window.

Now, to your other questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabullz
On what drive do I open iPhoto?
You don't "open iPhoto on a drive", or iTunes or any other programme for that matter -they are installed on the same drive as your OS. You launch the programmes from the Dock by clicking on the appropriate Dock icon, as I'm sure you are aware.

For the rest of your question (or the intent of your question as I perceive it) you merely need to consolidate all the data files for whatever specific data-type you desire on whichever drive you have designated for that purpose, then "point" the appropriate programme to that location.

Now, a confession. I'm very new to the world of Mac myself -despite having been a prolific computer user/owner over many years, so I have "my way" (probably rooted in the Windows paradigm) of achieving the results you desire... however, that may not be "correct" or appropriate to your needs. At this point it is far more appropriate for me to step aside and allow those much more familiar with the specific software packages you are dealing with to provide appropriate and correct advice. With luck, bobtomay, chscag or one of any number of others will be following this thread and be able to advise you more thoroughly.

All the best!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RadioSaigon View Post
OK........
Nice post there RS .... Great reply and information and i will +1 for the info supplied

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RadioSaigon

 
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Thanks Tattooed Mac

Another thought occurs too, that I'm sure others will have more information on... with all the iTunes music consolidated on one drive -great to have it all in one location as a sort of "central music server", but I don't think the library will automatically store additional (subsequent) purchases made across multiple accounts. Given you have 5 kids, there may be 6-7 iTunes accounts you wish to consolidate. I may be wrong, but I think one iTunes installation can only handle one iTunes account. So whilst consolidating the existing music data is very doable (I've done so myself across 2 accounts), subsequent purchases will only be stored in that single location for the iTunes customer account in use at that time.

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Dabullz

 
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RS - thank you for your input.

How will my data be organized? My original H/D, named Macintosh HD, the original, needs to be erased and reformatted. The 2nd H/D, named iTunes, now has all the data from my laptop and MHD on it. It now has 600 gigs of data while the third H/D sits relatively empty sans the OSX and iLife install.

At this point, iTunes drive is my main drive and/or start-up drive. It is nearly full. My experience with nearly full drives is that they don't function very well. Is there a way that my data is stored, forgive me for using a term that isn't likely appropriate, "dynamically", or equally across all 3 drives?

For instance, if I have 600 gigs of data, shouldn't it ideally be split among the 3 drives? 200 gigs each? Or does the OSX recognize them as one giant drive?

Thank you for all the input
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RadioSaigon

 
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OK, that changes the complection of things a bit...

You state:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabullz
My original H/D... <snip> ...needs to be erased and reformatted.
May I ask why? From what I understand of your posts, that doesn't sound like a bad idea at all, especially if you do a completely clean install of your OS and all the apps. But (and it's a biggie) that's a fairly major job to be undertaking. To avoid data-loss, you need to be absolutely certain that you have a thorough backup of every app's data-files in a safe location. It sounds a bit like you're fairly well on the way to achieving that with the data you have on your iTunes drive -however, double and triple-check you have everything before you start reinstalling your OS.

Now, would I be right in assuming that at this point you are yet to reformat the iTunes drive, so it still has a copy of the OS and apps on there? If so, no biggie... I would however personally be inclined to transfer just the data-files that you need to retain to a drive that has nothing on it, then reformat that (iTunes) drive. That will avoid inadvertently picking-up the detritus of unnecessary files, consuming space and adding the potential or confusion down the track.

We're still a fair way from rearranging your data to suit just yet -bear with me.

Once that is done, we're about ready to turn your Mac Pro into an inglorious "dumb box"!!!

First, my thinking: From what I know of your system, you have an original drive of 750GB, named Macintosh HD. You also have two additional drives (of undefined size, but we'll assume more than adequate) for storage, one of which is named iTunes, the other let's say named Photos. Straight away that gives us a pretty darn good idea of what is going to go where. Let's work towards that.
That Macintosh HD is definitely the drive for your OS, apps, documents, spreadsheets, emails and sundry bits of digital life -there is a shed-load of room on that drive to do everything you'll require for some considerable time to come. I wouldn't even consider putting it anywhere else. So do a clean reinstall of your OS and apps there. There's little need for any decision-making on your part at this point. The installation process will take care of directing all the software to the (new, empty) data files on your system.

Once that is done, you'll have the basics of your system set-up complete.

The data that you have backed-up on one of your drives now needs to be re-placed in the appropriate locations so that your software can find it. From there, pretty much all you need to do is put all the media files that the iTunes app will handle on your iTunes drive and all your photos (or whatever you decide) onto your photos drive, then tell the appropriate apps where to look!

Once you've done that, you'll have acres of room across all those drives for future expansion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabullz
... does the OSX recognize them as one giant drive?
Nope, OS-X will see and you will have three separate and distinct volumes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabullz
My experience with nearly full drives is that they don't function very well...
Quite correct -absolutely in the case particularly of your "main" (Macintosh HD) drive, where your OS and apps live.

Now, someone else will be able to advise you correctly here (my lack of OS-X knowledge precludes me being certain), there may be a way for you to copy the contents of your user home folder (prior to doing the format/reinstall of OS-X) to another drive and then replace it after the reinstallation to protect data like your contacts, email, calendars etc... I'm pretty sure there is, so best you get the correct information before proceeding.

All the best!

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pigoo3

 
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I still think you should consider some sort of backup hard drive strategy if you don't already have one. If you have all your music, photos, videos each on a separate drive...and one of them crashes...all the files on that drive will be lost.

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- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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RadioSaigon

 
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Absolutely concur. A solid backup solution is essential. Personally, I use a 1TB Time Capsule with Time Machine and Carbon Copy Cloner onto a dedicated partition on an external 2TB drive once a week! I'm a HUGE fan of keeping my backups physically separated from my computer

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How did you get on Dabullz?

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