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pilot1226
Mar 28, 2010, 02:01 PM
Hi,

Our home network consists of:
1. Gateway Laptop running WindowsXP SP3
2. iBook G4 running OS 10.4.11 (PPC Chip)
3. AMD Desktop running WindowsXP SP3.
4. 500GB Western Digital external USB HDD.

By the end of the year, we want to transition our #3 (the desktop) to a new iMac, and the existing desktop will be retired. I'm a little concerned about the compatibility between Windows on the laptop, the hard drives and backups from the desktop, and the iBook.

I've read the guide at the top of the main forum here, and I am thinking that since we're going to be using 2 Macs, we should probably use NTFS and just get a third-party program so they can read/write to them.

There's around 75GB of information on the external HDD right now.

What's the best way to configure my external HDD so I can have a backup copy of files that can be read/written to on both my Mac and Windows machines? We were thinking of doing around a 200GB section for Time Machine as HFS+, and using the rest for actual data (pictures, music, etc.)

Lastly, we have two copies of WindowsXP Pro SP3 (both 32 bit and 64 bit). Has anyone had any driver or application problems with the 27" iMac i7's running them in 32-bit or 64-bit modes?

Is it just more "worth it" to go get Win7 x64 Home Premium?

And one last thing that the guide was a little vague on, when exactly do you install Windows? I imagine you have to install the MacOS first, which will come preinstalled, but then what? Is BootCamp just an app you can launch within OSX, or is it more complicated?

Thanks in advance!



balamw
Mar 29, 2010, 09:34 AM
What's the best way to configure my external HDD so I can have a backup copy of files that can be read/written to on both my Mac and Windows machines? We were thinking of doing around a 200GB section for Time Machine as HFS+, and using the rest for actual data (pictures, music, etc.)


Have you considered network backup? A 500 GB Time Capsule or 640 GB HP MediaSmart LX195 would give you networked, Time Machine compatible, backups and storage available simultaneously from all of your machines.


Is it just more "worth it" to go get Win7 x64 Home Premium?


IMHO, yes. W7 is better than XP for most things, especially the 64 bit version.


Is BootCamp just an app you can launch within OSX, or is it more complicated?

Boot Camp is three things:


Boot Camp Assistant: A non-destructive partitioning tool
A set of Windows drivers for Mac hardware (on the OS X 10.6 install discs).
Firmware/EFI extensions that allow for BIOS emulation and booting non-EFI aware operating systems, also provides a boot selector menu.


BCA is just an app that prepares a partition on the HDD to hold Windows and generally holds the users hand through the process. You do not need to use it if you know how to partition the HDD yourself.

You also don't need to install the drivers, but it does make some things work that would not otherwise.

All current Macs come with the BIOS emulation installed, while Windows 7 64 bit has learned to understand EFI natively. So for the most recent Windows and Macs you don't even need the BIOS emulation.

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drummerlondonw3
Mar 29, 2010, 09:37 AM
win7 is a great OS but if you are happy and can use XP for everything I dont see the need to upgrade.

I still love XP.

ps. bootcamp is very easy and intuitive. Take your time and it'll be fine.

pps. get winclone for when you are done as time machine is OSX only

pilot1226
Mar 30, 2010, 07:20 AM
Thanks for the info. At this point I'm leaning AGAINST Time Capsule because I've noted a few issues from the forums and Google regarding heat issues. I also am not a huge fan of having the HDD & router in one device.

balamw
Mar 30, 2010, 07:22 AM
Thanks for the info. At this point I'm leaning AGAINST Time Capsule because I've noted a few issues from the forums and Google regarding heat issues. I also am not a huge fan of having the HDD & router in one device.

Yeah, and that's why I suggested the LX195 as well. I have the EX490 and it is a nice "glue" between the three Macs (each running OS X or W7) and 1 PC (running W7 or Ubuntu).

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pilot1226
Mar 30, 2010, 12:58 PM
I misread. Thanks for the response. I'll consider it, but I'd rather not have an additional computer running if I don't have to. Though, I suppose that could give me something to turn this current desktop into when it is retired. It has 2 160GB HDD's on Raid0 (stripe) at the moment, I could easily swap them out to 2 1TB HDD's on Raid1 (mirror) in a matter of minutes.

balamw
Mar 30, 2010, 01:06 PM
I misread. Thanks for the response. I'll consider it, but I'd rather not have an additional computer running if I don't have to. Though, I suppose that could give me something to turn this current desktop into when it is retired. It has 2 160GB HDD's on Raid0 (stripe) at the moment, I could easily swap them out to 2 1TB HDD's on Raid1 (mirror) in a matter of minutes.

You could certainly roll your own Windows Home Server (or other OS) on that hardware, but the nice things about the HP units is that they are small, not power hungry, and Time Machine compatible out of the box.

Using Time Machine with other NAS units is always a bit of a kludge, and does not support a restore from "bare metal".

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tomllama
Mar 30, 2010, 01:42 PM
I'm in the process of installing an HP EX495 HomeServer to use as a file share and backup. I just got tired of the issues with trying to share between OSX and Windows via either boot camp or Parallels. This adds capabilities and makes the sharing trivial - and I'm happy that Chronosync works with the server too. I have Time Machine up and running, just have not gotten to the media sharing (tunes and movies) yet.

balamw
Mar 30, 2010, 01:48 PM
I'm in the process of installing an HP EX495 HomeServer to use as a file share and backup. I just got tired of the issues with trying to share between OSX and Windows via either boot camp or Parallels. This adds capabilities and makes the sharing trivial - and I'm happy that Chronosync works with the server too. I have Time Machine up and running, just have not gotten to the media sharing (tunes and movies) yet.

Just FWIW the media collector never quite worked for me (I have a large iTunes library) so I turned it off and have been updating the shares on the server manually. It was certainly a nice surprise when they added the TiVo extender modules, which just added to the device's capabilities...

B