I am disappointed about not being able to use Time Machine with a Airport Base Station Hard Drive and with using laptops I don't really want to have to tote a hard drive around with my laptop when I use it around the house.

1. I've read that you can use it with networked hard drives that are attached via Ethernet cable to the home network. Is that true? I'm not too familiar with AFP drives but I've read that the Lacie Ethernet Big Disk has this feature but are there any others?

2. If this is true about AFP drives I have another question. If I'm going out of town for a week for example if I buy a network AFP drive which also has USB and/or Firewire can I simply unplug it, take the drive with me to use for backups while on vacation (through USB or Firewire) and then when home connect it back to the network? Will it continue to backup this way? I know I could simply not back up for that week and come home and it would immediately update backups but some of my trips are very critical and I would like to have backups during them.

3. Also, any suggestions of a good backup AFP drive? I was going to look at Lacie Rugged Drives as a backup solution. They are very compact and light but since they are laptop 2.5" drives they only go up to 250GB. Since each other my MBP's has around 120GB of Data I'd prefer to go with 500GB Backup Drives

4. Okay, one other question. I also am getting an iMac so there's a chance if the AFP doesn't work out I'll get a standard USB/Firewire drive. I know I can attach it to the iMac and then use it to back up to from my MBP over the network. If I do this just like in question 2, could I disconnect it while on a trip to use it on the go and then when home connect it again to my iMac and continue backing up?

Sorry for all the questions. Time Machine seems great but confusing to the newbie. I have Leopard now on the way and should receive it early next week so I want to see what type of hard drive solution to get.