External drive or Mirgrate Assis.

Discussion in 'iMac' started by eladnova, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. eladnova macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    #1
    Hi guys.

    I have a MBP and *may* be getting a 2013 iMac before the new year.
    I have 2 questions.

    1. Transfer all files or stick with external bootable HDD?


    I'd like to keep everything on an external drive. I'm ok with the iMac storing the OS (I guess) but don't want the iMacs internal HDD to have any of my music, work files, photos etc etc

    Whats the fastest protocol for this? I've heard conflicting info regarding USB 3 /Thundebolt/eSATA etc

    2. Mirgration Assistant
    If I do use the Migration Assistant to transfer everything from my MBP to my iMac, is transferring 750 GB to 1TB of data a lenghty process? My own wifi is quite slow again I'm looking for the fastest cable type / data transfer.

    Thanks
     
  2. tomnavratil macrumors 6502a

    tomnavratil

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2013
    Location:
    Litovel, Czech Republic
    #2
    1. Regarding Data Usage, if you want everything external, get a 256GB SSD and then an external solution based on your budget and value of your data. You have many options starting from a simple USB3.0 external drive (portable or 3.5), Thunderbolt or use a DAS or NAS with a RAID system. Fastest out of these would be most likely SSD over a Thunderbolt protocol, although probably the most expensive one as well.

    2. I'm using a Time Machine backup as the Migration Assistant asks you what method of transfer you are using. So either USB3.0 external drive, Firewire 800 drive or again, Thunderbolt drive (you didn't mention what MBP you have so I'm not sure about the ports). Or you can use 1GB Ethernet cable between Macs. Also, don't forget that some apps don't work properly if they're being transferred such as Adobe CS6, where clean install is recommended.
     
  3. eladnova thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    #3
    Thanks Tom.
    Big help. I get your point re SSD and a thunderbolt.
    I'll probably run with a USB 2.5" as they're very portable.
    I have an NAS setup but ultimately like the ability to move the drive around.
    Fully intend to use Carbon Copy Cloner and create copies of the drive too.
     
  4. tomnavratil macrumors 6502a

    tomnavratil

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2013
    Location:
    Litovel, Czech Republic
    #4
    If you want to go with 2.5 size for portability, look at LaCie Rugged drives as they offer both USB3.0 and Thunderbolt for speed and compatibility. However there are other alternatives.

    I'm going for the similar setup - one fast drive for data (was thinking RAID 0 but probably SSD or Buffalo DDR) and then one for backups including Time Machine and CC.
     
  5. eladnova thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    #5
    Thanks. They look like solid drives, alright.
    Also love the stackable mini stack by OWC which is a USB drive with a Mac Mini footprint.
    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/ministack

    You're not running Windows 7 or 8 with either BootCamp or natively installed by any chance?
     
  6. tomnavratil macrumors 6502a

    tomnavratil

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2013
    Location:
    Litovel, Czech Republic
    #6
    No worries. I'll have a look at the ministack as I haven't been aware of it here, in the UK.

    Unfortunately not, I'm a full MacOS X user, there is no need for me to run Windows so I hope someone else would be able to help ;).
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #7
    Go with USB3. For the extra cost in most cases TB will not give you any better speed. Here is a good comparison of the two.

    Just plug in an ethernet cable between the two machines and run Migration Assistant during the new system setup.
     
  8. YMark macrumors 6502a

    YMark

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Location:
    Arizona
    #8
    Does this need to be a crossover cable?
     
  9. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #10
    [[ I'd like to keep everything on an external drive. I'm ok with the iMac storing the OS (I guess) but don't want the iMacs internal HDD to have any of my music, work files, photos etc etc ]]

    Remember that if you keep everything on that external drive, if the drive fails, or it's lost or stolen, you LOSE EVERYTHING, as well.

    So what this means is -- if you use an external as your "keeper", you'd better have it backed up TO ANOTHER EXTERNAL drive (all shouting intentional).

    If you don't do this, you're risking something very unpleasant down the line.

    My advice:
    Forget the "external idea", insofar as keeping two Macs is concerned.

    Let each Mac "be its own Mac".
    Set up the iMac as your "stationary platform", with the stuff on it that you will normally keep and do at home.
    Set up the MBP as your "travel platform", with just the things on it you need when going mobile.

    You will STILL need to keep each backed up onto an external drive. In this case, you might get a portable external enclosure, install a "bare" 2.5" drive into it, and then partition the internal drive.

    Then use CarbonCopyCloner to clone the contents of BOTH Macs to the partitions on the external drive.

    Now you can just cart along the portable drive when you travel with the MBP. You'll have a backup of the MBP, _and_, you'll have the contents of your iMac close-at-hand to boot.
     

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