Can I use an external Thunderbolt Display connected drive as my "content" drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by sculley, Aug 10, 2012.

  1. sculley macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2004
    I'm looking into updating my computer, and am considering a Retina MBP and a Thunderbolt display. What I want to know, is given that the rMBP is currently so limited in it's SSD capacity (at the low end), could I have all my music/photo/movie libraries stored on a big Thunderbolt drive that is plugged into the Thunderbolt Display? I realize that I'm only going to have access to these libraries while plugged into the display, but I've got iTune Match running, so as far as music is concerned it's not an issue. I'm wondering if there are other ways that I can do the same thing with wireless network drives, Time Capsule, etc.? I'm not familiar with using external drives to do this. Until now, I've always preferred to have everything on one machine and back up to a Time Capsule. I'm looking for what people think is the best solution. Thanks.
  2. CWallace macrumors 603


    Aug 17, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    Yes. I have two 4TB WD external HDDs (I mirror them) connected via FW800 to my Apple Thunderbolt Display that hold all my iTunes music and videos, so this would work for a TB drive, as well.
  3. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    Yes, you can use an external drive to do this, but be aware that Time Machine will not backup external drives unless you specifically tell it to.
  4. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR
    I have experimented with this (MacBook Air - Thunderbolt Display - Pegasus R4 - Seagate GoFlex) and the most annoying thing is remembering to eject the drives every time you disconnect the laptop from the ATD. If you fail to do that, you end up with surprise removal warnings and errors.

    I plan to use my TB storage devices when I get a new iMac with TB (my iMac is pre-TB). Since that will be a static configuration, then I will not have the same issues as with a laptop. I am very much looking forward to the dual 27" displays, especially for Aperture.


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