Best Portable Time Machine Disk for MBA


macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 3, 2009
hi guys,

looking for some input on what the best portable drive would be for the macbook air for my time machine backups ?

what size and which drives are your using or have used ?



macrumors 65816
Sep 7, 2004
HD prices are skyrocketing at the moment because of flooding in thailand where several of the largest HD manufacturers are, particularly WD.

I was fortunate to scoop up a Samsung 750gb hd for 50 bucks on new egg about 1.5 months ago and got a cheap but nice all metal vantec enclosure from actually for 10 bucks.

Works great for my Air and requires a single-plug 1" USB cable that came w/ the enclosure. Some enclosures suck and require 2 plugs. just be aware.

That said if you want something that truly goes with your air from a look and feel standpoint, apple has these and they're nice.

750gb is 20 bucks more than that one.


macrumors 68020
Jul 9, 2009
Just curious why you want a portable HDD for time machine? It's not really recommend to keep your backup with you and your computer, because if you lose the computer you're losing the backup too. Plus portable drives are more expensive, come in smaller capacities, and can be more prone to failure since they typically move around more.

Why not just get a WD mybook or similar? Cheap, reliable, effective.


macrumors 6502
Oct 19, 2011
I have a G-Link Slim Drive (500GB) that I use, its small, and very mobile.


macrumors newbie
Nov 15, 2011
MBA Backup

I have a MBA 11 inch with 64GB. I picked up a 64GB jump drive that I use. I travel a lot and am concerned with crashes more than loosing my MAC. All of my data is backed up on the iCloud and Pogo. For me, carrying a 750 GB HDD to back up a 64GB or 128 GB, you get the idea.

Might not work for you but does for me.


macrumors 65816
Jan 4, 2008
I have a Verbatim external hard drive that I purchased two years ago at an Apple Store that I think is really portable. It's only about 256 GB and was a little less than $100, but that was two years ago, so you could find a larger capacity for much cheaper now. I've used it to back up my MacBook Pro and now my Air, and it has an input for both Firewire and USB. It also comes with an extra charger in case your computer doesn't supply enough power through the USB port to power the drive. My 11" Air though was able to power the drive through USB only, so I didn't need to use the charger.
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