Macbook Air Back up Question

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by goblin cadet, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. goblin cadet macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2012
    I have a 1TB external hard drive with some files on it. Is it possible that I can use some of the space on this hard drive for Time Machine Back up while I can have the rest for general file storage to use between my mac and windows desktop? If so how could I do this?

  2. 007bond macrumors 6502a


    Dec 12, 2008
    DFW, Texas
    I've done this myself. Just create 2 partitions using Disk Utility and use one for Time Machine.
  3. Mike in Kansas macrumors 6502a

    Mike in Kansas

    Sep 2, 2008
    Metro Kansas City
    Although you shouldn't use a backup disk as also a primary storage disk for those files you want to share between your Mac and PC, there's nothing stopping you.

    The best thing to do would probably be to partition this drive into two partitions (use Disk Utility). Make the TM partition at least 2X - 3X the size of your MBA hard drive, and the other one can be the rest. Then, format the TM partition to HFS+, and the other one Fat32. The FAT32 partition will allow you to both read and write to it from both your MBA and your PC. There is a 4GB file size limitation with FAT32, so if you are transferring video around this may not be the best.

    Once you do this, connect the drive to your MBA and start TM. TM should ask you if you wanted to back up to this drive & partition; if it doesn't, launch it and set it up to use this drive.
  4. goblin cadet, Oct 6, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2012

    goblin cadet thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2012
    Alright thanks!

    I was looking online and I read somewhere that exFAT file system would also allow me to work between windows and Mac OS without a file size limit.

    Also there is a problem. Whenever I try to use disk utility there isnt a tab for partitions. Any help?
  5. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    exFAT does indeed work for reading/writing between both OSX and Windows, however Time Machine does not work with exFAT (only with Mac OS Extended Journaled).

    As for the other issue, I think you have to erase the entire disc first before you get the option to create partitions. It's been a while since I partitioned my 1TB external (I did the exact same thing you're doing now).

Share This Page