How to use an external drive for both file storage and time machine backup?

bughyz

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 6, 2013
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I currently own a Seagate 500GB External Hard Drive. I want it to be able to serve as a time machine backup and file storage. How can I do that?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
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Boston
The easiest way is to partition the drive, creating two volumes, the first can be used for TM, the other for your file needs.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,173
5,318
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
I have to disagree with Maflynn :p, there is no real advantage of partitioning, actually I think it creates a problem, you have to decide how big the partitions need to be now, if one grows to big you run into problems, not so if you don't partition, and yes, it works.
 

bughyz

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 6, 2013
9
0
The easiest way is to partition the drive, creating two volumes, the first can be used for TM, the other for your file needs.
If I do 2 partitions what should the formats be?

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I have to disagree with Maflynn :p, there is no real advantage of partitioning, actually I think it creates a problem, you have to decide how big the partitions need to be now, if one grows to big you run into problems, not so if you don't partition, and yes, it works.
If I chose not to partition them, time machine will create a folder by itself?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,042
30,969
Boston
I have to disagree with Maflynn :p, there is no real advantage of partitioning, actually I think it creates a problem, you have to decide how big the partitions need to be now, if one grows to big you run into problems, not so if you don't partition, and yes, it works.
The advantage is that you keep the backup sparseimage logically separate from your files. I agree there is no technical advantage since we're talking about the same physical drive
 

benwiggy

macrumors 68020
Jun 15, 2012
2,186
15
I currently own a Seagate 500GB External Hard Drive. I want it to be able to serve as a time machine backup and file storage. How can I do that?
It's worth pointing out that the "file storage" files will need to be backed up to ANOTHER physical device.
You can't backup files to the same device, because when it fails, you've got nothing to restore your files from.