Time Capsule - can you partition the drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by convert2mac, Mar 2, 2008.

  1. macrumors newbie

    convert2mac

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    #1
    Does anyone know if you can partition the Time Capsule drive? on a 500gb, I would ideally like to have 300 gb for time machine, and then be able to use the rest (200 gb) for additional storage space. Is this crazy thinking?

    How many people acutally backup their computer? I never have. And not sure why I think I should start now. Should I?

    The other option I am considering is to get the Airport Extreme and then when I actually need the extra storage space an external drive. The only thing I lose is the properly working backups. Correct? (What exactly the issue with the Time Machine before Time Capsule came out?) I am very new to Macs, and have heard many things....I'm confused now. Sorry if these things have been discussed in detail before.
    Thanks.
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    ergdegdeg

    Joined:
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    Nebraska
    #2
    Yes, you definitely can. Before assigning the HD to TimeMachine, use Disk Utility to create two partitions. Make sure that the 300GB one is HFS+ so that TimeMachine can use it.
     
  3. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    #3

    What is "HFS+?"
     
  4. macrumors P6

    Peace

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #4
    Quicktip!

    hold down the command+ctrl+D key and get all kinds of neeto info! :)
     

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  5. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    #5
    I couldn't get TC drive partitioned. Disk utility only seems to work for drives that are physically connected. The TC drive, which is networked, is not an option that can be selected.

    However, a nice thing is that the drive is fat32 so i can set folder permissions on it and still access the folders with my vista machine.
     
  6. macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

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    #6
    Not the Time Capsule drive. You can partition an external drive prior to connecting it to the Time Capsule USB port, though, and use it for Time Machine over the network through Time Capsule.
     
  7. JNB
    macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #7
    No, you never need to backup your drive. Until you suffer a catastrophic failure and realize that years of personally valuable work is lost forever and you should have all along. It doesn't even have to be total; all it takes is one critical file and life gets real miserable real quick.

    It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when. Considering everything you'll be advised here and any other computing resource, considering the fact that Apple has provided possibly the most transparent automated backup solution ever--fully integrated with Leopard, and considering the fact that you bought a Time Capsule, specifically marketed as a backup device, should you choose to not back up, that's entirely up to you. Just don't expect much help when something goes seriously south on you.
     
  8. JNB
    macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
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    #8
    Actually, the dictionary doesn't give the correct answer in this context. HFS+ is the current version of HFS, or Hierarchal File System, the filesystem in use by Apple for the Mac OS since 1985.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    #9
    So you can use an external drive on Time Capsule for Time Machine? I thought that Apple disabled using external with Airport Extreme for Time Machine.

    Was that whole thing a ploy by Apple to get people to buy Time Capsule? An airport extreme + 500GB WD Hard drive isn't much more than Time Machine and you can remove the drive and take it with you if you need. Why wouldn't Apple allow you to do this but would allow it hooked up to Time Capsule?
     
  10. macrumors P6

    Peace

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    #10
    I suppose one could find that out if one clicked on the "more" button;)
     
  11. JNB
    macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
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    #11
    If they didn't know about ctrl-:apple:-D then the "more..." was probably too much to ask. :p

    FWIW, even Apple is a little slim on this one:
     

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  12. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2008
    #12
    Partitioning the drive in another enclosure?

    I wonder if you can take out the hard drive, install it in an external HD enclosure, partition it, and then put it back into TC.

    BTW HazChem, I don't think the drive is in FAT32. It can be accessed from both Mac and PB because it is a NAS drive. The file system format of a NAS volume is irrelevant to the attached computers, since they don't connect to the drive directly. The data transmission is handled by the NAS system. Being an Apple product, it is more likely to be in HFS+.
     
  13. macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

    Joined:
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    #13
    The external drive on TC can be used for Time Machine. The AEBS "AirDisk", however, still cannot.

    The way Time Machine works with TC is identical to how it works with a Leopard Shared drive, i.e. it uses sparse bundle disk images. Hopefully, there will be a firmware update for AEBS in the future.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors newbie

    convert2mac

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    #14
    I actually have not bought the Time Capsule. I was asking these questions to determine before I buy it if it will be able to do these things. And it seems the short answer is no for partitioning.
    Can someone tell me the short answer to the problem with Time Machine before Time Capsule? Everyone I talk to seems to have a slightly different opinion.
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2008
    #15
    You know, I thought about this for awhile, and was disappointed that it couldn't be partitioned. I wanted to partition it so I could use it both as backup and as a wireless drive.

    I realized, though, that if I just use it for both without partitioning, it would be a simple matter to remove old backups manually if I ran out of room. I mean, assume you were going to partition it 300 GB for time machine, and 200 GB for files. You just throw files on there, and let the backups grow until you start running out of space. Then, you delete backups until they only take up 250 GB and you're up and running again.

    You just have to make sure you delete the old ones. I don't remember how the folders are marked. Would that be hard? Any reasons why that wouldn't work?
     
  16. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #16
    I am only slightly irritated.

    I had called Apple prior to placing my order for a 1TB time capsule to specifically ask if I could partition the drive.

    He answered 'Yes' you sure can.

    I ordered.

    I read now that I can not.

    I will not open the unit - simply request to return it. I paid with a combo CC and GC. I hope that it does not pose a problem.
     
  17. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ USA
    #17
    Iff you're using Safari.
     
  18. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2007
    #18
    It won't pose a problem. Apple will credit your CC back like usual and then mail you a new GC for the amount used.
     
  19. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #19

    Thanks!
     
  20. macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #20
    There's no need to return it - if you really need a partition on it, use Disk Utility to create a disk image of, say, 300GB on the Time Capsule's drive. Then mount that disk image on your desktop. You'll have full read/write access to the 300GB within that disk image and Time Machine will respect that space; it'll simply use the rest for backup.
    This will work quite well and obviates the need for partitioning the Time Capsule.
    The one caveat is that the separate disk image wont be available to Windows machines (can't mount Apple .DMG disk images).
     
  21. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #21
    Sounds easy enough to do, but afraid I have no idea how to do it!
     
  22. macrumors 6502a

    darwinian

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    #22
    So at the risk of being incredibly redundant, I just want to ask. I want to have the functionality of the NAS with TC but I do not want to use Time Machine. Is this possible? I would much, much rather rsync my own manual backups.
     
  23. macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #23
    Its really very simple.

    • Open Disk Utility (in your Utilities folder)
    • Go to File -> New blank disk image
    • A "Save..." style dialog will pop up. Choose your Time Capsule as the save location and give the disk image a name ("Data on Time Capsule" or whatever you want)
    • Choose a volume size (there are several presets but in your case you'd choose Custom and pick your size. Leave Volume Format to default (MacOS Extended Journaled). Choose if you want it encrypted or not (you'll have to enter a password to access it, but it'll be safe from prying eyes). Leave Partition at its default and Image Format as read/write.
    • Click Create and it'll make a disk image on your Time Capsule of what ever size you've chosen (say, 200GB). This will use 200GB on your Time Capsule, but that space will be safe from being used up by Time Machine backups.

    To read/write data to this disk image, open the Time Capsule drive in the Finder just like any other drive and double click on the disk image icon with the name you've chosen. It'll mount on your desktop like any other drive of 200GB in size (or whatever size you've specified); you may then copy/save/create/delete/etc. any data you choose on it.

    As far as your Mac will be concerned, it'll be just another network-based disk volume. It'll all work rather well, and will prevent Time Machine from using up the whole Time Capsule device if that's what you want.
     
  24. macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #24
    The Time Capsule is basically an AirPort Extreme with a built-in HD that also happens to work with Time Machine, unlike USB drives hanging off the current model AirPort Extreme. There is no support for partitioning this volume, however. I'm not sure of the native filesystem on the unit, however, but presume its FAT32 since it'll also function as a Windows-accessible volume. Not sure if this will cause problems for you and rsync.

    Do be aware that Apple is marketing this device as an adjunct to Time Machine - a drop-in networkable Time Machine repository for multiple household Macs plus basic shared file storage. More advanced/custom usage may or may not work. In such cases, you may simply be better off with a dedicated NAS device or a cheap second Mac + a bunch of hard drives as a file server.
     
  25. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2007
    #25
    Do I need to partition my Time Capsule?

    I just got my TC in the mail today. I have two MacBooks and one MBP that I am going to backup with it. Do I need to partition the TC for each computer or can I just keep it wide open for all three. There is no security issues that I have with all three computers accessing the same drive.

    I also need to use the Time Capsule to use as a common drive for all three computers to share files. Advise me?
     

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