External HDD for Data AND Timemachine? (partitioning, RAID, etc)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by $MacUser$, Feb 26, 2010.

  1. $MacUser$ macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
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    Los Angeles
    #1
    My really old 70 GB external HDD just crapped on me. I'm looking to nab a Seagate 320 GB from Amazon that looks nice. So I'm wondering...the internal drive on my Mac Mini is only 80 GB, and I'm getting pretty close to filling it. I'm wondering if there is a way I can partition the external drive so that part can be used for data, and part for time machine? Maybe a 160 GB partition for time machine, and 80 GB for data, making the effective data volume 160 GB?

    Assuming this is possible, would there be any way to "RAID" the data partition and the internal drive on my Mini, so that I don't have to worry about moving around files manually, etc?

    :apple:
     
  2. newdeal macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    #2
    ...

    partitioning it like that is not an issue at all. Wanting to raid it is a horrible idea that even if you could do it it would work horribly
     
  3. tbayrgs macrumors 603

    tbayrgs

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    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #3
    Just my $0.02 but I'd recommended using a separate External exclusively for TM backups. If you partition it to use part for data, you now have your data and it's backup on the same drive---if it dies you're out both original and backup.

    Replacing the HDD on a Mini isn't as daunting as many would lead you to believe---really very straightforward, just need to take your time. I replaced both the RAM and HDD on mini in about 30 minutes (not counting cloning the original HDD) and I have no expertise working with computer hardware. I only mention it because you can get a larger HDD to replace your for fairly cheap (250GB for $50-$80). Then you add on an external at least as big and you're all set.
     
  4. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    Montreal, QC
    #4
    RAID is a bad idea. If you do a RAID 0 between with the external drive, you won't be able to use the computer without the drive connected.

    As for the data partition, you can do that, but don't put anything on there that you don't mind losing. I store my ripped movies and TV shows on a partition that isn't backed up, since if the drive dies, I can just rip them again from the original disks.
     
  5. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 27, 2005
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    Los Angeles
    #5
    Sounds interesting, but then I'd have a useless 70 GB HDD. I'm into the whole "waste not, want not" thing, so there's no way I'm going to pitch a good drive.

    That said, in retrospect, I agree the RAID thing is probably a bad idea. I guess I'll just partition the drive and dump the data hungry stuff on the data partition (iTunes, etc.). Only question is, how do I do this? Also, will time machine backup the data portion of the external drive?
     
  6. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    Jul 26, 2004
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    #6
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1449

    The point of having a backup is to have a copy of your data on another drive so that if the first drive fails, you haven't lost your only copy. Why would you want a backup on the same drive?
     
  7. tbayrgs macrumors 603

    tbayrgs

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #7
    I thought you said in your initial post that the 70 GB HDD just crapped out on you, really can't waste it anymore than it already is.

    If you meant the 80 GB internal currently in the Mini, I certainly can appreciate not wasting. Maybe get only a slightly larger new HDD, stick the old 80 GB in a 2.5" enclosure and use as an external (i.e. for data as you mentioned), and get a new larger external to backup both your Mini's new HDD and the 80 GB external.

    Again, I'll have to agree with BlueRevolution. Backing up the data on one partition to another partition on the same drive doesn't make any sense--drive fails and there goes both copies.
     
  8. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #8
    Yeah, I meant the internal drive. I could do what you're saying and enclose the old one, etc, but there's only one firewire connection out the back of my mini, and I've heard running drives off USB and Firewire at the same time can lock up the machine.

    Hah, that's exactly right. I didn't consider that when I made the post.

    I've been flirting with the idea of upgrading my Mini's ram for a while, which would involve taking out the drives, etc. The Combo drive is starting to crap, so it would be a good opportunity to overhaul the machine...

    ...BUT, I don't think I really feel like getting into that now, and if I screw something up I really don't have the cash to replace it. As time goes on I may investigate that option, but for now I think getting a fresh external is all I'll need.

    Thanks for the help and insight, guys. :)
     
  9. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    Jul 26, 2004
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    #9
    Where? :confused:
     

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