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View Full Version : How long will it take to transfer 9 gigs via USB?


johnbro23
Jun 2, 2005, 08:13 PM
I'm planning on transferring 9 gigs of data onto an external hard drive in a limited amount of time. I'm not sure what connections the computer has, so I'm interested in finding out how long it will take to transfer via USB 1, USB 2, FW 400, and FW 800. I'm betting the computer has USB 2, but I'm not real sure.

katie ta achoo
Jun 2, 2005, 08:25 PM
This article doesn't provide info about how long it'll take, but it's an interesting read nonetheless.
http://www.lowendmac.com/usb/truth.shtml

9 gigs over USB... My scientific ansewer is: friggin' forever.

but at the end of this page, there is a chart that should answer your USB v. firewire question:
http://macspeedzone.com/archive/5.0/usbcomparison.html

Powerbook G5
Jun 2, 2005, 08:44 PM
By the time you are done, your great grandson might still be alive to press the "Okay" button when the transfer is complete.

GFLPraxis
Jun 2, 2005, 08:57 PM
That article is USB 1 and USB 1.1.

USB 2.0 is about ten times faster and if you don't have other USB stuff plugged in as they share a bus, it should be about as fast as Firewire 400.

nuclearwinter
Jun 2, 2005, 09:00 PM
I just backed up my Home folder to my external USB 2.0 LaCie 160GB. The size was roughly 16GB and took about 20 minutes. 9GB should take, oh I dunno, 10-12 minutes. Not long at all. USB 1.1 or 1.0 is a totally other ballgame though. I have no clue how long that would take.

ChrisBrightwell
Jun 2, 2005, 10:08 PM
USB 1.x: (9 gigabytes) / (12 Mbps) = 1.70666667 hours
USB 2.0: (9 gigabytes) / (480 Mbps) = 2.56 minutes
FW400: (9 gigabytes) / (400 Mbps) = 3.07200 minutes
FW800: (9 gigabytes) / (800 Mbps) = 92.16 seconds

Those are best-case scenarios. Odds are you'll take a bit longer on any one of those connections than is rated.

Lacero
Jun 2, 2005, 10:11 PM
What about over Bluetooth 1.0?

iBunny
Jun 2, 2005, 10:23 PM
I think USB 2.0 is pretty good. Also, I think it depends alot of the Hard drives

If you got some good Drives... It shouldnt take too long... 20 minutes maybe.

mkrishnan
Jun 2, 2005, 10:41 PM
For FW400 guidance...consider the iPod. When I first got mine, I copied approximately 12 gigs of music onto it. It took approximately 12-15 minutes. The iPod had to do some other stuff, which probably explains why it sound slower than nuclearwinter's USB2 experience (FW400 is usually considered to be faster than USB2 for sustained high bandwidth transfer, while IIRC, USB2 has the higher peak rate of 480 MPBS (vs 400) and so is sometimes faster for short bursts.

So in short, as long as you are not talking about USB 1.x, this should not be such a big deal...basically a coffee break or less.

mkrishnan
Jun 2, 2005, 10:41 PM
What about over Bluetooth 1.0?

LOL...nice. :D

plinden
Jun 2, 2005, 10:46 PM
USB 1.x: (9 gigabytes) / (12 Mbps) = 1.70666667 hours
USB 2.0: (9 gigabytes) / (480 Mbps) = 2.56 minutes
FW400: (9 gigabytes) / (400 Mbps) = 3.07200 minutes
FW800: (9 gigabytes) / (800 Mbps) = 92.16 seconds

Those are best-case scenarios. Odds are you'll take a bit longer on any one of those connections than is rated.
I get an average of about 170 Mbps transferring large files over USB2 to my external HD. so make that just over 7 minutes. But lots of smaller files will take longer than a few small files.