External Harddrive to backup two computers?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by iPhoneApple, May 25, 2014.

  1. iPhoneApple macrumors 6502

    Jan 24, 2011
    Is it possible to have one portable hard drive that would let me back up both my Mac and my Surface?

    Is this possible or do I need to get two harddrives to back them up? If this is possible, please post some brands/devices.
  2. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Sure... that will work fine. Just make two partitions on the external drive. Make the first in the Mac OS Extended format to use with Time Machine software to backup your Mac. Then you can use the Surface to format the second partition to whatever format it needs (NTFS?).

    I like the WD My Passport drives if your needs are not too great. You can find them on Amazon and most electronics stores. Get a drive that will allow a Mac partition around 1.5 to 2X the amount of total data your expect to have on the Mac.
  3. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2011
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    It's possible, by creating two partitions (one NTFS and one Mac OS Extended). But I don't recommend it, too many issues with partition damage and backups are too important to justify the small savings of not buying an extra drive.
  4. glenthompson macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2011
    An additional downside to sharing the drive is needing to move the drive between devices. The best backup is one that always online so that backups happen continuously. Too easy to forget to make the backup.
  5. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    It's possible, but I would not recommend it. Better to have dedicated hard drives for backing up each computer.

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