Alternative to time capsule

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by iemcj, Aug 5, 2016.

  1. iemcj, Aug 5, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2016

    iemcj macrumors 6502

    iemcj

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2015
    #1
    Hey guys, I've had a 3 tb time capsule for about 4 years now and yesterday it suddenly "died." Fan sounds and still warm but no wifi to connect to and no light on. I unplugged and plugged back in and no change, fans ran but no wifi, no light, and nothing if I plugged it in through ethernet. Today I plugged it in and out a few times and magically it turned on again so I'm quickly seeing if there's any old backups I can salvage before it dies for real.

    On amazing the 3tb time capsule is still outrageously priced at 379+ plus! D: Any reason I can't just buy a 30 dollar linksys router, physically plug in an external 3tb harddrive (89 dollars) into said router and get the exact same thing for almost a third the price?

    What I need is something that acts as a router and I can wirelessly use time machine backups on. Every single cord is being used up on the back of my imac so being able to wirelessly backup is a huge plus. Thanks for the help team!
     
  2. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #2
    A TC does wifi (two bands), has a small ethernet switch, has a small USB 2 hub aimed at printers, and hosts a internal HD intended for use with Time Machine. Precisely which of these functions do you need? Obviously a $30 linksys router is not a complete replacement.


    BTW, this is not about any iMac. The thread should be in Mac Accessories.
     
  3. iemcj thread starter macrumors 6502

    iemcj

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2015
    #3
    Sorry about the misplacement my friend, honestly I didn't even think of it so if a mod needs to move it I'd be totally fine! :)

    My printer is wireless so no need for usb unless it's to hook up a external hard drive to.


    My needs, wireless router that I can plug a hard drive into so I can do a time machine backup over a network. I know it supports network backups since that's literally all the time capsule is, a router with a hd built inside instead of plugged in. Space is a non issue since it's going in a closet, I'm fine having a router with a external drive plugged in the back.

    Does that make sense needs wise?? Thanks!!
     
  4. iMi macrumors 6502a

    iMi

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2014
    #4
    I would recommend ditching the physical back up completely. I still have time machine but no longer use it because everything is in the cloud. In case of catastrophic failure, I will simply download everything from the cloud storage. Plus, I am able to use multiple devices and always have files synced across all devices.

    Alternatively you could go with a less expensive router and a separate network storage attached to it. I used to have a similar setup in the past and it worked well.
     
  5. AppleNewton macrumors 68000

    AppleNewton

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Location:
    1 Finite Place
    #5
    Try the refurb store. If not for a time capsule but an airport extreme and find yourself a cheap 3-4TB external drive to attach to it.
     
  6. GaiusBaltar macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    #6
    any (AC) router + WD mycloud? (connected through ethernet, not USB)

    that's my setup and didn't fail me for the last couple of years.
    Wouldn't want to rely on a device that's both my main router and backup disk in one device anyway..
     
  7. iemcj thread starter macrumors 6502

    iemcj

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2015
    #7
    Cloud is not an option. Live in the country and my upload speed is roughly 30kbs on a good day lol. I literally am creating data faster than it could ever be uploaded even if it used 100% of my bandwidth lol. What router do you suggest??
    --- Post Merged, Aug 5, 2016 ---
    Will an airport express work? http://www.apple.com/shop/product/FC414LL/A/airport-express-base-station There's a usb on it!
    --- Post Merged, Aug 5, 2016 ---
    Any router will work you say? http://www.apple.com/shop/product/FC414LL/A/airport-express-base-station Considering this cuz it's apple and 50 bucks. Plug my internet into the the ethernet in, then plug in a external harddrive (100 bucks for 3tb on amazon) and walla I'm done. Right??
    --- Post Merged, Aug 5, 2016 ---
    Edit, never mind on the airport express, read on amazon reviews that it does NOT support an external harddrive, just works on a printer. :(
     
  8. iMi macrumors 6502a

    iMi

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2014
    #8
    That's basically it. But as you pointed out already the Express doesn't support network drives. The Extreme does. You can also shop around for non-Apple router and there are plenty that work well. In fact, I have to say that the T-Mobile free router (made by Asus) was better than latest model of the Airport Time Capsule. If you are a T-Mobile customer you can request one for free and it works like a charm. I am pretty sure it support network drives as well.

    Good luck!
     
  9. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #9
    Personally I found the TC's HD size far too limiting. So I switched our house to two Extreme base stations with one Express used to connect to audio/video equipment. Our TM backups are via LaCie d2 6TB drives. The Extreme USB ports are OK for printers that don't do wifi.
     
  10. iemcj thread starter macrumors 6502

    iemcj

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2015
    #10
    Update for everyone who's been helpful... :)

    After about two hours on amazon, cnet, avs forums, and reddit, I decided to buy a refurbished Airport Extreme for 109 bucks off amazon and a 5tb external HHD to plug in bringing my total to 258 bucks with tax. Now I'll get the greatness of the stand alone router and can run my time machine backups to that external drive. Who knows, maybe in a few years I'll replace it with a 10tb drive haha.

    Thank you all very much for your help, getting pointed in the right direction is very important, it woulda cost me 40 bucks more just to get the 2tb time capsule with literally 2/5ths the storage space. Gotta love that apple tax... :p
     
  11. nephron8 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    #11
    Hey,
    Nice set up but what hard disk you picked up?
    How you plan to keep disk alive?
    I picked up similar set up.

    Wifi ac router and Hitachi ext.hdd which remains running 24 hrs and since last few days' noticed lags while accessing old back up.
    Another issue I noticed is pre 10.12 backups are not visible and I am not able to open them up.
    Is it my hdd giving up ghosts or Sierra can't access old back ups.
     
  12. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #12
    Alive to whom/what? Any good drive plugged into Extreme's USB-2 port should be available. Remember the port is slow and not suitable as a NAS support. It is OK for TM to do backups.
     
  13. nephron8 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    #13
    I don't what went wrong with my hard disk but it is making typical noises and I used Hitachi hard disk and it is sitting stationary next to AirPort Extreme and the entire set up is running on apc power ups.
     
  14. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    #14
    I have a similar question, my laptop is going 600 days without a backup because I am too lazy to plug it in. I already have a router and hard drive, I just need a case with an Ethernet port that can hold a hard drive. Does such a thing exist? Don't need a full-blown NAS, and those things approach the price of a used Time Capsule anyway.
     
  15. AppleNewton macrumors 68000

    AppleNewton

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Location:
    1 Finite Place
    #15
    There may be a small niche of them, bust most are empty NAS enclosures. You may better off finding a cheap AirPort Extreme AC + a cheap enclosure to do the wireless backups.
     

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