Airport Extreme - USB Western Digital HD, SLOW!??? 7MB/s

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by gadgetfreaky1, Apr 16, 2010.

  1. gadgetfreaky1 macrumors newbie

    Apr 11, 2010
    I have a Airport Extreme dual channel Base Station. I just bought the Western Digital USB 2.0 2TB drive

    I have a Windows 7 machine. After a few hours, i realized i needed macdrive to format it to HFS+ for the windows machine to see it thru the AEBS.

    So i started transfering my first few files, a few Gigs of photos and videos. I even connected ethernet gigabit rather than try over N.

    And it starts out at about 1MB/s transfer and after a few minutes slowly goes up and peaks at 7MB/s. 5GB took about 10 min :(

    please tell me I can get faster speeds? I was hoping to stream mkv's bluray iso's off this but at this speed.. no way! Am I doing something wrong?
  2. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    Nope. You've done nothing wrong. It's the AEBS itself that acts as a bottleneck. The hardware that's in place to network USB drives is just that slow, and gigabit Ethernet won't do a thing to improve speeds. You'd be better off getting a NAS and attaching that to the router, especially if streaming Blu-ray ISOs.
  3. gadgetfreaky1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 11, 2010
    so connected via ethernet I can get 25MB/s, read and write, but via 5GHz wireless N and only 3 feet from the AEBS it's 7MB/s

    How fast do I need for 1080p? If files are 25GB or so? BTW, i formatted the 2TB as HFS+

    Direct connected USB to windows 7 thru macdrive I get 100MB/s peak and sustained about 50MB/s read speeds, and about 25MB/s write speeds.

    is USB drives on AEBS just not a viable solution? I really didn't want to invest in a noisy Network attached storage.

    If not, any suggestions for a network attached unit? Again, i'm all windows machines but definitely like the AEBS.
  4. VoR macrumors 6502a

    Sep 8, 2008
    Put it down to 'wireless syndrome', or if you've actually tested your network - simply blame the AEBS :)
    Wireless can be pretty unreliable and inconsistent, fine for browsing the web on the sofa but I'd much rather cable running between machines.
    Could try switching wireless channels, murdering your neighbours or moving house.

    25GB for a 2hour ish movie? Pretty crude maths would give you 25000MB/2hours = 3.47MB/s

    Compressed video tends to be variable and have spikes that might be more than your wireless can throughput.

    Well, I wouldn't ever buy an AEBS. A fair bit of money for a bit of kit with some pretty poor performance.
    If you want to spend money on something that's premade there's many companies that will sell you a nice quiet nas machine that you can take out of the box and switch on.
    If you want to make your own, there's many alternatives for you. It's not hard/expensive to make yourself a machine that will outperform anything you can buy for sensible money, easily saturating any home network - how noisy it is is up to you.
  5. pilot1226 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 18, 2010
    If memory serves correctly, here's your issue:

    Wireless 'g' is 54 Mbps - MegaBITS per second.
    8 bits (b)= 1 byte (B)

    54 (Mbps) / 8 = 6.75 MBps

    So, it sounds like this is a limitation of 802.11g if you're on a 'g' network. It's always fastest to use a USB/Firewire connection if you're using an external drive by far. Even if you're on 'n', you've still got to take into consideration the remainder of your bandwidth, quality of connection, packet loss, etc. You probably will never hit the "108 Mbps" that 802.11n touts.

    But, if you aren't transferring huge files, it is very convenient to have a wireless external drive (kind of like using a Wireless printer vs. having the computer you hardwire into on all the time)

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