Does anybody here use an external drive without a power cord for their Time Machine?

Kurrgo

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 6, 2014
42
0
I'm thinking about getting a WD drive to perform my Time Machine backups and I'm wondering if it's ok to use one that is powered via the USB. I don't want to damage or burn anything out having it permanently connected and am wondering if somebody can shed some light.

Thanks!
 

sjinsjca

macrumors 68020
Oct 30, 2008
2,058
395
Sure. One or two should be fine. For more (I have five, to provide my family with duplicative backups), use a good-quality powered hub.
 

Kurrgo

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 6, 2014
42
0
Sure. One or two should be fine. For more (I have five, to provide my family with duplicative backups), use a good-quality powered hub.
So you have a couple of USB powered and the additional are powered backups that are always on?
 

sjinsjca

macrumors 68020
Oct 30, 2008
2,058
395
No, in my case all are currently connected via the hub. But once I had two connected directly.
 

maf2k8

macrumors 6502
Jul 14, 2009
316
0
I have 2 external WD USB3 drives connected to my new 27" iMac. One is used as a TM backup and the other as a extra storage drive for music/photos/movies ( since my iMac only has a 512ssd ) and i have no issues.

What issues are you worried about if i may ask?
 

Kurrgo

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 6, 2014
42
0
I have 2 external WD USB3 drives connected to my new 27" iMac. One is used as a TM backup and the other as a extra storage drive for music/photos/movies ( since my iMac only has a 512ssd ) and i have no issues.

What issues are you worried about if i may ask?
I wasn't sure if keeping a drive that is powered by usb would wear out of damage the Mac. I wouldn't be plugging in the drive but allowing the Mac to power the drive.
 

Darklevel

macrumors newbie
Aug 1, 2008
4
0
UK
I use a bus powered WD drive for my time machine, been running since June 2013 and i have had no problems.
 

infantrytrophy

macrumors regular
Oct 27, 2013
230
61
Yes, both my iMac and my wife's iMac have USB-powered external drives used for Time Macine backups. Both are WD Passport drives bought at Costco. No problems, both have worked well for many months.
 

SteelBlueTJ

macrumors 6502
Apr 2, 2012
323
25
USA
I use a WD USB3 1TB bus powered "portable" drive for my time machine backups on my iMac. I don't leave it connected all the time since I don't see the need to run constant backups. I plug it in about every 10 days or so when I get the pop up notification saying "no backups for 10 days." Works good enough for my needs.
 

sjinsjca

macrumors 68020
Oct 30, 2008
2,058
395
One is used as a TM backup
That's not enough. Drives fail. Have a duplicative backup strategy with, at a minimum, two backup drives that back up alternately. Ideally you'd have a remote or cloud-based backup also.
 

koulmj

Suspended
Mar 18, 2013
376
467
That's not enough. Drives fail. Have a duplicative backup strategy with, at a minimum, two backup drives that back up alternately. Ideally you'd have a remote or cloud-based backup also.
I love when people recommend this, it reminds me that there's no data on my machine worth the price of another drive...god I need a life,