Advice needed on Mac Strategy

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Cbdboz, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. Cbdboz macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #1
    I currently have a 2008 2.66 intel core duo IMac, that has 640gb of hard drive....of which only 15gb is remaining!!!. ( which may account for poor performance)

    I have a 2 a 2TB time capsule ( which in time machine reads as 657 gb of 2 TB available....so am assuming I have used up 1.4g?)

    Whilst I have been waiting for a new Mac mini to be launched ( for home theatre use as a media server), and then seeing if the Mac mini gets thunderbolt 2... And if so, would iMac follow suit...I would finally update IMac as we'll.

    My big challenge now is how do I free up enough space on my 2008 Imac so that it can at least function normally as a family computer, and ensure I have all the movies, pictures, files etc saved in a safe place so that I can then transfer to new machine when it arrives...and ideally also keep as an offsite backup drive.

    I am not sure if I delete files from hard drive...whether these will eventually disappear from my time capsule.....and / or if I can save separately on time capsule ( tho clearly don't have too much space their either)

    Is there a better option of buying a future proof external hard drive ( any tips welcome), and then copying all content over.....and can I then reset my 2008 iMac for family use and transfer files to new iMac when I get it..( or would you recommend to keep as little on iMac as possible and use external drives / NAS as a better strategy for new iMac as well?


    I'm sure I am not the first to come across this conundrum, and would very much appreciate all advice.

    Thanks.
     
  2. TheyCallMeBT macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    #2
    I would just get an external hard drive (and don't use it as a time capsule drive). And just store the large files on it, like movies and music. That should free up plenty of space to use the computer normally.
     
  3. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #3
    Stuff that is no longer on your internal drive will eventually get removed from the Time Machine drive. Get an external USB 3 drive for your overflow data. The USB 3 will allow for best possible speed on the new Macs when you get them.
     
  4. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #4
  5. melendezest macrumors 68000

    melendezest

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2010
    Location:
    Where you can wear boardshorts in Winter
    #6
    Other posters suggestions are spot on, but I would add that you should get a dual-drive external enclosure and then move all your large files to it. That way you could not only free up your internal drive but you can maintain a backup of your large files as well, in addition to your time machine. I use Carbon Copy Cloner to keep the externals synced up.

    OWC has several configs to choose from; I usually pick an empty enclosure then add HDDs as needed. This one is what I would get:

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/NewerTech/GM3QKIT0GB/

    It's a bit on the pricy side, but I have a few similar enclosures from OWC and they are reliable as hell and built like a tank, with all the ports you'd need.
     
  6. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #7
    Thanks guys....a few follow up questions.

    1. If i copy all files, say photos movies and music to en external drive...can I then have access to these via the normal iPhoto, movie and iTunes library on my mac ( if connected to external drive). If so...how would I set this up as default to read from external drive?

    1.a. And likewise, can time machine, then back up the external drive to the time capsule?

    2. Assuming above (1) is possible, can I also access these files via my Apple TV ( assuming computer is turned on and iTunes is open?.

    3. Again, assuming I can move all key data to an external disk...and then read from this disk on my iMac......can I then clean / purge and perhaps even reset to factory settings on the iMac, so that this is then ready to turn over as the family PC using the " internal hard drive" on their accounts, and linking into the ' external hard drive' for my account.

    4. I am assuming that time machine and CCC kind of do a similar thing.....if I then want to switch all this data to the ' internal' hard drive of my new iMac or Mac mini ( when I get it)... Is this relatively straight forward to do.

    5. Finally ;) , ..... For safety....I would like to have a periodic off site backup strategy.... Would the best thing be to purchase an additional external hard drive (2nd one) and then periodically copy over a bootable version...and would CCC be the best way to do this. ( sorry if I sound over cautious....but I lost 4 years of pictures when someone thought it would be a good idea to put the old iSight camera above the hard drive of my mpb...the joy of magnets, ...and a friend lost all their data when someone stole their time capsule whilst on holiday ( needed the router to access from offsite...but had no backup outside the TC!!!)

    .if all above is possible, then I would end up with...

    Existing IMac ...reading/ writing to ext drive #1 for my account
    ... Set iMac to factory settings...install mavericks
    ... R/ w to internal drive for fam acct.
    ... Backed up on time capsule
    ... Periodic back up to ext drive #2 ( then kept off site)

    Future IMac /MM ....would then transfer all data to new mac for my acct, or set up to also read from ext drive #1
    .... Then also back up to TC and ext #2 as above.

    Thanks again
     
  7. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
  8. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #9
    Depends on the App. With iTunes you just don't have it import the files but tell it to reference them externally. You can do the same with iPhoto, or just move the iPhoto Library to the external drive and open it there. I don't know about the latest iMovie. The older one you had to move the events and project folders to the external drive and then make aliases to them from the original locations in Movies. The pro applications, Aperture and Final Cut Pro X, handle this with ease.

    I believe so, but I don't back up externals with Time Machine so can't answer with certainty.

    Yes.

    The external hard drive will not be owned by your account. If you need this sort of control you will need to run a server system (as I do).

    Best way to do that is attach the drive to the new machine and "drag and drop" the folders to your account on the new machine.

    You assumption is wrong -- TimeMachine and CCC are completely different in terms of what they do. Time Machine will keep versions of files, including keeping files that you have deleted. CCC has a clone of the drive at the time you run it. It cannot restore files you deleted before the last backup. On the other hand you can boot off of the CCC drive, so recovery from a failed drive is very fast and easy (as long as the CCC backup is up to date). Also CCC allows making backups that you can keep off-site which is very important for protection against theft, fire, or natural disaster, as you point out in item 5. :)

    Absolutely! I keep two sets off offsite backups and alternate between them. The reason being that if you detect a drive failure while making a backup you can end up with both your system drive and you backup invalid! I have yet a third set (and third backup approach since I also use TimeMachine) in "the cloud" using CrashPlan.
     
  9. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #10
    re: item 1a: TimeMachine backup of external drives.

    External drives are added by default to the TimeMachine "exclude" list and will thus not be included in backups. However, if you open the TimeMachine "Options" you can select the external disk, press the "-" button and remove them from the list and save. Then the removed external drive will be included in the next TimeMachine backup.


    -howard
     
  10. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #11
    Thanks Heaps for the feedback...much appreciated.

    ..I will now look into how I can tell I tunes to reference an external drive...I presume this will be in the preferences of iTunes.

    ...likewise, re the server system....this sounds way out of my league..but would appreciate any pointers to where I should look to read up on how to set up and manage etc.

    Cheers

    ----------

    Thanks...will look into this.

    Now time to look for that external drive...drive's :)
     
  11. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #12
    Start iTunes while holding the "option key" and it will allow you to pick your iTunes library, wherever it is.

    And you are right, the preferences will allow you to set your library location and give you several management options.


    -howard
     
  12. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013

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