A Few Airport Extreme Questions

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Yelmurc, Feb 6, 2010.

  1. Yelmurc macrumors regular

    Apr 16, 2008
    Houston TX
    My old router recently died so I bought a new Airport Extreme. I was excited to attach a USB Hard drive so i could keep all my computers on the same itunes library. Its a fairly large library, and when I launch itunes through the network drive it seems to navigate slower than normal. There seems to be lag as the hard drive gets up to speed. Is this to be expected over a wireless network? Also the drive is 4 years or so old, not sure what the rpm on it is but it might not be up to par on todays external hard drives.

    So my main questions are, would investing in a new hard drive improve my performance?

    And if a ethernet drive is a better solution, does airport extreme support ethernet hard drives?

    Thank you for your time and any feedback is appreciated.
  2. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    You need to factor in several things.

    A 5400rpm drive can keep up with and wireless network so it's best to connect via pre-n for maximum speed obviously wired is going to be better. Network drives don't tend to be indexed the way a normal drive it so each time the drive is accessed there is a delay.
  3. Yelmurc thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 16, 2008
    Houston TX
    Since I don't have any of the paper work on this hard drive how can I get the specs off it?
  4. mbestel macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2010
    Power management

    The main problem (I think) is power management. I've seen it happen on Time Capsules and external disks on Airport Extreme.

    When you don't access the drive for a while, it spins down to conserve power, etc.

    Then, when you want to access it again, it needs to spin up and get ready for use, introducing a considerable delay to the whole process.

    This - to the best of my knowledge - is not configurable on Airport Extreme / Time Capsule.

    Additionally, whether your drive is 5400 or 7200rpm, I suspect that the transfer rate it is capable of is far in excess of the maximum transfer speed that the Airport extreme will get you to.

    My testing has shown that a disk connected to Airport Express via USB writes at a max. of 12MB/s and reads are a bit higher.

    I suspect that the disk itself can easily achieve that, so it isn't your bottleneck.

    Hope this helps.



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