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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Nov 09, 2009
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    149
    Time Machine help..
    Hi..I am getting to grips really nicely with both my imac and new quadcore mbp, and have decided it's time to invest in time machine and protect my data.

    What size external HD should I buy for my imac? the computer has a 1tb internal HD capacity.

    I am buying a dedicated external drive *just* for time machine and not portioning it for any other storage ..*just* time machine.

    What size external drive should I be looking at?

    will 1tb be enough or should I get a bigger size?

    all help appreciated!

  2. #2

    McBie's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 26, 2008
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    Specs:
    2013 MBA 13" - OS X 10.12.latest
    Have a look at the Time Capsule option ... No hassle with cables
    All wireless and completely transparent.
    You can use the same Time Capsule for both your iMac and your MBP
    I believe Time Capsule has a 2 TB capacity as well.

    Cheers ... McBie
    A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history - with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.
    The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Nov 09, 2009
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    ok, im confused ..would i really need a wireless hard drive if the sole function of this drive is to be attached permanently to the imac?

    i don't see if i should be paying £400 for something i can do for £50....wireless is of absolutely no importance to me on this occasion as this drive will be permanent on my imac just for time machine, nothing else..

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Sep 08, 2008
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    Shakopee, MN
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    Specs:
    iMac, late 2012 model, 21"
    Sure, the Time Capsule will be permenantly hooked up to your iMac, but how are you going to back up the MBP? With the Time Capsule, you'll be able to back up both machines since the MBP can wirelessly access the hard drive in the Time Capsule and do backups from there.

  5. #5

    McBie's Avatar
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    Apr 26, 2008
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    2013 MBA 13" - OS X 10.12.latest
    Quote Originally Posted by bluefox9er View Post
    ..... all help appreciated!
    Apparently not !

    Since you referred to 2 machines in your opening post, I was only thinking about the most efficient way of backing up both machines.


    Cheers ... McBie
    A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history - with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.
    The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.

  6. #6

    IvanLasston's Avatar
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    Feb 26, 2010
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    1.8 GHz i7 MBA 11" OSX 10.8.2
    You don't - if you want to backup to an external drive - since you have 1TB - you probably want a 1.5TB to 2TB drive to backup. That will give you enough headroom in case you fill your hard drive. Time Capsule is useful when you have multiple machines that connect wirelessly - If it is for the Imac only and not moving an external drive will work just fine.

    I would recommend paying extra and look into a raid 0 solution - Mirrored disks - so it takes twice the disk space but protects you against single drive failure. You don't absolutely need it but I've had many USB hard drives (and regular hard drives) just die over the years - What's backing up your backup?

  7. #7


    Member Since
    Nov 09, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by McBie View Post
    Apparently not !

    Since you referred to 2 machines in your opening post, I was only thinking about the most efficient way of backing up both machines.


    Cheers ... McBie
    sorry, totally my mistake for making a terrible job of being clear..i should have stated that I'm not going to use the same external drive for the macbook pro...was thinking one of those western digital passport drives to use as a dedicated time machine hard disc for the macbook pro..

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Jan 18, 2010
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    1,466
    Specs:
    2.8 GHz 15" MacBook Pro OS X 10.7.x & some old Macs
    Quote Originally Posted by bluefox9er View Post
    sorry, totally my mistake for making a terrible job of being clear..i should have stated that I'm not going to use the same external drive for the macbook pro...was thinking one of those western digital passport drives to use as a dedicated time machine hard disc for the macbook pro..
    If you are going to use two separate hard drives for each computer then yes any hard drive will do. For Time Machine backups you should get a size that is larger than the one you have on your computer so that TM has some room for its history.

    You also don't need it much larger than the one on your computer unless are one of those people who constantly deletes large files accidentally and then need to restore them back onto your computer.

    Remember TM is not meant to be used to store files you no longer want on your computer. Use a separate hard drive for that.

  9. #9

    Tater2Stock's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 23, 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by IvanLasston View Post
    I would recommend paying extra and look into a raid 0 solution - Mirrored disks - so it takes twice the disk space but protects you against single drive failure. You don't absolutely need it but I've had many USB hard drives (and regular hard drives) just die over the years - What's backing up your backup?
    Actually what you mean is Raid 1, Raid 0 uses both disks as one for performance.

    Raid 1 mirrors the drives.
    iMac 21.5 late 2009
    ...turning into an iMovie junky.

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