Help external drive question

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by danycsrj, Feb 11, 2011.

  1. danycsrj macrumors newbie

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    Feb 11, 2011
    #1
    I just got a new 2T external drive, I have a 3 years old macbook pro, that keeps says startup disk is full. I use this external drive as a time machine, can I create a folder in it just for documents and pictures and delete from my computer to free some space ? is it safe ? Any other recommendations on the best way to keep my photos / documents safe and not in my computer ?

    thanks !

    Danielle
     
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

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    #2
    That would work. I'd recommend creating two partitions, using one for time machine, and storing your extra stuff on the other.
     
  3. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #3
    I second this. Just remember, once you partition it, and fill it full of stuff, you won't be able to change the partitioning without re-formatting, so make sure you give sufficient space allocation to Time Machine, but not too much, or you won't have enough left for your docs and media.

    Depending on how you wish to use it, I would recommend 2-3 times more than your startup disk, or however much data you wish to back up. Certainly not less than double.
     
  4. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    forgive my ignorance a partition is a folder ? LOL !

    this is what I have:



    MacBook Pro
    Model Identifier: MacBookPro3,1
    Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
    Processor Speed: 2.2 GHz
    Number Of Processors: 1
    Total Number Of Cores: 2
    L2 Cache: 4 MB
    Memory: 2 GB
    Bus Speed: 800 MHz
     
  5. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5

    After a little research , new questions:
    How do I create a partition, and how much room do you recommend for the time machine ?

    Thanks again !
     
  6. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #6
    A partition is making one storage device act like two. ie turning your 2TB external into one 500GB external for Time Machine, and one 1.5TB external for your data.

    You do this by opening "Disk Utility" in your Utilities folder, clicking on your external HD, and going to the "Partition" tab. Your external disk will likely show up twice, once as a disk with one name, and again just below it and indented, likely with another. Select the first, unindented disk in the side menu, else the "Partition" option is not available.

    Once you have partitioned the disk, there should then be two indented external disks, and you should also have two external hard disks on your desktop. Then, use which ever one you wish to use as the Time Machine backup. The OS may ask you if you want to use one for TM, or you may have to do it via System Preferences.
     
  7. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #7
    I believe we have the same computer.

    If so, do you have the 120 GB HD?

    If so, I would recommend no less than 250GB for Time Machine. Being a 2TB disk, you could probably go 500GB, or anywhere in between, but 250GB should be sufficient.

    If you have more HD space than 120GB, I would suggest you stick to at least a little more than double your startup disk size, which should enable TM to keep a few months worth of backups.

    I'm only using 120GB for my TM backup, but am paying the price of only being able to backup my most vital data, not my entire startup disk. As you have a 2TB disk, and it doesn't sound like you need huge amounts of storage anyway, I would suggest you don't make the same mistake.
     
  8. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #8
    Last question I hope !

    Since I already made a folder in the EHD before partitioning it, how is to transfer to the other partition ? Is it possible ?

    thanks again !
     
  9. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #9
    I hope you haven't partitioned it yet in that case.

    Partitioning requires formatting. If you have data on the external HD, you will need to back it up somewhere before you partition it. Copy it somewhere else if you can, partition the disk, and then copy it back wherever you want it to be.
     
  10. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #10
    here's my dilemma, I don't have where to copy it, can I remove the time machine from there and then partition with the file folders there but no time machine ?:confused: I want to cry !!! aAHHHHH a
     
  11. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #11
    what about formating, there are few options here...
     
  12. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

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    #12
    I use Disk Utility for all my formatting needs, i do the exact same thing as you mentioned. When I upgraded to an SSD i could only afford a 64GB drive. Being used to using a 320Gb HDD It really sucked, so I used the 320 drive from my MBP and put it into an external case. I allocated 64 GB to time machine (even though it uses less) and the remaining space is for all my apps.
     
  13. flyfish29 macrumors 68020

    flyfish29

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    #13
    So I don't think this has been brought up yet, but if you are wanting to put these files and pics on an external drive only, then you don't have a backup of those important files and pics. Perhaps I am not understanding your dilemma correctly but if this is true you are flirting with disaster!!

    I would look to delete files, programs, etc that you no longer need or never needed.
     
  14. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    this is the problem, I have a 2t external hard drive, in it I have a tme machine and about 10,000 pictures, How do I partition it ? I don't have the room to bring all the pictures back to the computer
     
  15. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

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    #15
    Spend the money on a flash drive, or a couple; How much music do you have?
     
  16. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

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    #16
    Go to disk utility, bring up the external, and go to the partition tab. You should be able to drag the corner to make the current partition smaller (I recommend around 500GB), then format the newly created free space to HFS+, and you should be good to go. I partitioned a much smaller external without entirely reformatting, so you shouldn't have an issue.
     
  17. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

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    #17
    You can reformat in disk utility without losing data?
     
  18. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #18
    Do I understand correctly that your external hard disk is unpartitioned, and contains both your time machine backup AND your documents and pictures?

    If this is true, and everything still works fine, then you don't have to worry. If you don't have any other storage devices, then you can't change this anyway.

    You just have to recognise that Time Machine will slowly use more and more disk space, and may eventually use a large amount of your 2TB storage space. Although this may take years.

    If you get to the point where you run out of space because of TM, you may have to investigate removing some of the backups manually, however, I don't expect this will be necessary for a very long time.
     
  19. danycsrj thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #19
    if I were to partition how do I format?, and yes I have not done the partition and have both TM and folder with files in my External HD.
     
  20. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #20
    You can also format using Disk Utility. The format you'll need for TM or any backup of your internal hard drive is HFS+, also known as Mac OS Extended:


    HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended)
    • Read/Write HFS+ from native Mac OS X
    • Required for Time Machine or Carbon Copy Cloner backups of Mac internal hard drive.
    • To Read/Write HFS+ from Windows, Install MacDrive
    • To Read HFS+ (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer
    • Maximum file size: 8EiB
    • Maximum volume size: 8EiB
     
  21. Erasmus macrumors 68030

    Erasmus

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    #21
    If in a few months time your TM starts eating huge amounts of space, use this method to delete some of your older backups.

    http://insidenewcity.com/blog/view/how-to-delete-backups-from-time-machine/

    Don't trash them.
     
  22. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #22
    This is exactly why I prefer CCC over TM, plus the benefit of having a bootable backup.
     
  23. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

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    #23
    You're not actually reformatting the partition that has data on it. It's similar to how Boot Camp assistant creates a second partition without reformatting your entire drive. If there is enough contiguous empty space, you can shrink one partition to open space for another.
     
  24. flyfish29, Feb 11, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011

    flyfish29 macrumors 68020

    flyfish29

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    #24
    there are NO partitions on the external drive everyone....CURRENTLY NO PARTITIONS!!!.....so doing anything with a partition will NOT help here AND will only erase data.

    Your options are to either make space on the start up drive for the pics, burn them to DVD backups, or to purchase a large flash drive or a medium sized external to temporarily move them to. If you buy another external you could use that as an extention drive of your Mac, then use the 2TB as a total backup (second copy of EVERYTHING) which is very important if those 10,000 pics are irreplaceable family pics.

    But I still come back to I am unsure what a partition at this point will do for you? If you partition you end up with a time machine backup of your mac HD, but your pics are on a separate HD so they are not backed up.

    so DO NOT try to partiion without double checking you have adequate copies of your photos backed up.
    A

    What I dont get is that your start up drive is full AND YOU HAVE 10,000 pics on your external that are not on your Mac HD....AND your external HD is brand new??? So where did the 10,000 pics come from? Are they still on your start up drive as well? They must be or else you would have created a whole bunch of space...10,000 pics is a large amount.
     
  25. flyfish29, Feb 11, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 27, 2011

    flyfish29 macrumors 68020

    flyfish29

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    #25
    no it is not an option here- she will lose data doing this. Don't partition at this point!!
     

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