backing up macbook to a windows computer is it possible?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by mrmayor92, Jul 17, 2009.

  1. mrmayor92 macrumors 6502

    Jul 12, 2008
    hi basic im too cheap to buy an external hard drive or an airport service thing so is it possible to back my computer up wirelessly to my old windows pc?

    im doing this to install windows xp on my new macbook pro 13.. is it really necessary to back up your whole mac harddruve before doing this?
  2. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040


    Sep 28, 2008
    You won't be able to use Time Machine, but you can enable file sharing and just manually move your personal files over.

    It's not necessary, but it's recommended before running BootCamp, because if something hiccups during the partition creation part of the process you could lose all your data.

    I personally haven't had a problem with it, but it's possible.
  3. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    It is always a good idea to have a backup and a strategic backup strategy
    HDDs will fail, stuff happens, etc.

    Any time you do things like partition your drive, etc. you run the risk of data loss

    You don't have to look any further than this forum to see threads and threads of folks who jacked up their drives by trying to do exactly what you want to do

    So, "yes" I would suggest you backup before attempting this

    As far as your question of backing up to an external drive that is formatted for a PC (essentially what you are saying), you will likely need additional software to do this, unless it is formatted as FAT32. If it is formatted as NTFS you will need additional software.

    Check out the various file systems here: MR Guide: File Systems

    NTFS-3G will allow OS X to read/write to NTFS (Windows) and it is free

    MacDrive will allow Windows to read/write HFS+ (Mac OS X), but it is not free

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
  4. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    If you can take your PC's HDD out and it is SATA, you don't need to buy anything.

    As long as the MBP has an SATA ODD this will work.

    If I had an SATA HDD that need an HFS+ partition I'd do the following:

    1. Open the computer.

    2. Remove ODD.

    3. Connect PC's HDD.

    4. Find an external keyboard and mouse. Connect them to the MBP.

    5. Fire up the MBP.

    6. Go into Disk Utility and format the PC's HDD. I'd let the NTFS section stay a about 30 GB.

    7. Do steps 1-3 backwards.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Do you have any data on the drive that you care about? Would you be upset if you lost everthing on the Mac's hard drive? If not then you do not need a backup.

    If this is a brand new Mac with none of your data on it then you already have the recovery DVD.

    To directly answer your question. Yes the PC can be used to backup Mac files. Share a directory over the network and simply drag the files over.

Share This Page