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Other Hardware and Peripherals Other Apple systems and peripherals discussion.

Airport Extreme vs Time Capsule


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MikeV99

 
Member Since: May 16, 2011
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Western Digital 2TB My Book Studio External Hard Drive via Airport Extreme vs Time Capsule - 2TB

I want to set up an external drive for my systems with the following specs:
  1. Connection to my local network via ethernet (connection to a hub) rather than wireless for performance and security reasons (I do not want a Internet connection on the device).
  2. Ability to do Time Machine backups for an iMac and MacBook Air along with using the device for file storage.
  3. Ability to connect a printer via USB cable to the device that can be used by iPads/iPhone using AirPrint (make a non-Airprint printer accessible to the iPads/iPhones).
  4. Connect one or two USB external hard drives so that they are available via the local network (I'd like one or both to be DOS formatted so they can be accessed from Window computers).

Will either or both of the above hard drives be able to meet the specs?

Any comments about the usability, flexibility, and reliability of the devices?

Anyone have positive or negative experience using either of the devices?

Thank you.

Mike

iMac, MacBook AIR (mid 2011), iPad 3, iPhone 4
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IvanLasston

 
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1 - if your local network connects to the internet, then anything you connect to it - is connected to the internet. Not to say there aren't ways to isolate networks but that would be a weird setup for home.
2 - Either the Extreme with a drive or a time capsule will do this. The drive has to be formatted hfs+ for it to work - so 4 is out. That being said - smb is available
3 - There is print central - a $9 app
PrintCentral for iPad on the iTunes App Store
4 - I tried multiple hard drives - back in the day. It didn't work so well for me but maybe it has improved. I haven't tried it since. I do have a hard drive connected to a time capsule and that works fine. Windows should be able to access the drive even though it isn't dos formatted - as long as you have Airport Utility installed.
Use Apple's Time Capsule with a Windows PC

The Airport Extreme has been solid for my users. I had an issue with the original time capsule but they are 3 generations in - and it seems that the new time capsules are solid.
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MikeV99

 
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Thank you for your detailed response.

Just to be sure - Re: 1 - connections can be Ethernet and not wireless?

Any preference between Extreme vs Time Capsule?

iMac, MacBook AIR (mid 2011), iPad 3, iPhone 4
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IvanLasston

 
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Depends on what you want. I wanted an easy to use NAS - and it is a bit of a premium for a built in drive - but the simplicity of the Time Capsule I was willing to pay for. Knowing that it was fully supported for Time Machine was another reason.

That being said, I have a friend setup with a raid 0 USB dual drive that works great for backup and NAS connected to an Airport Extreme - for about the same price as a Time Capsule.
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MikeV99

 
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Thanks - From the manuals it looks like the only difference between the two devices is one has a built in hard drives. The manuals have the exact same verbage in a lot of areas.

Most of what is included in the devices relates to wireless connectivity and WAN setup. I need neither. I already have an extensive wireless network that is very stable and effective as well as a router that provides the firewall between the LAN and WAN.

I could not tell from the manuals if it can be used to appear as an AirPrint enabled printer to iPads and iPhones connected to the LAN. I already use PrintnShare which is PrintCentral but it requires one of my machines to be running WePrint. I want to print from my apps without needing to use PrintCentral or WePrint.

iMac, MacBook AIR (mid 2011), iPad 3, iPhone 4
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