Can Time Machine be used for extra drives?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by markw10, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. markw10 macrumors 6502

    Sep 4, 2006
    I have a Mac Pro and currently have two drives in it, a system drive that's using as the startup disc and for most of my use. The 2nd drive is more like a server drive which is used on that system but also shared with all computers on my home network. i use it for things like clipart, backups of itunes from the laptops, media files, etc.
    I just installed a 3rd hard drive and have been planning to set it up as a Time Machine drive for my Mac Pro. I have several questions though.

    I assume when I do this it will just work as a Time Machine drive for my main system/startup drive, correct?

    Is there a way I can use Time Machine for the 2nd drive in my system? In a sense setting up two Time Machine backups, one from the main drive to this new backup drive and the 2nd from the server drive to a 4th drive I can add in the future?

    If the 2nd question is a No, is there a way I can set it up so that Time Machine simply backs up both the main drive and that 2nd, server drive, to the Time Machine drive? I really prefer not to use this option since both drives are 1TB and the hard drive I have just gotten as the time machine drive is 1.5TB. I think that should be okay for my main drive since it is only 30% used or so but with backing both onto it I don't think I have enough space to do it well.
  2. mstrze macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    Not exactly sure what you want to do...seems a little like jumping through hoops...but I will tell you how I have Tm working for me:

    I have TM backing-up (onto a 1.5TB external drive) my 500GB internal AND my 1TB external which serves as my iTunes Library drive. This has worked flawlessly for over a year.

    By saying you want your TM drive to act as a 'second drive' for your system, do you mean storing TM backups on it AND hosting other data? If so, I wouldn't recommend this as that 'other data' would be lost if this drive crashes. You would still have all of your other backed-up files in their original locations if the TM drive crashes, but this extra data would be gone. Keep your backup drive purely a backup drive.

    My suggestion is to use this new drive exclusivley as a backup for all of your other drives (currently 2 other drives?). Next year, buy a 2 or 3TB drive and replace this one for added peace of mind and greater could then use this currently new 1.5TB as a scratch disk or random drive but also include it in the usual backup regimen on your new larger TM drive.
  3. karsten macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2010
    i think he's saying he wants to back up both drives with time machine, both onto the 3rd drive.
  4. mstrze macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    Then, no I said.
  5. sonor macrumors 6502

    Jan 15, 2008
    London, UK
    That's just the kind of thing I've been looking into. I really want a more flexible version of Time Machine that could take care of this. I have 2 x 2TB external drives - one for photos and one for audio. I want to backup up these drives to 2 more external drives - photos to backup drive A and audio to backup drive B. I know I can change the Time Machine settings manually to do this - selecting the TM drive and changing the preferences - but it would be great if this happened automatically. I don't know much about AppleScript, but I've been searching around and found a script that would change the preferences and a suggestion on how this could be set to run automatically. I can't immediately find the webpage with details though. It's not ideal, but I thought I might try it out.

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