need external hard drive recommendation

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by cooneyirish, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. cooneyirish macrumors newbie

    Mar 11, 2008
    I'm purchasing an external hard drive to back up a relatives imac. I would appreciate ideas on best overall drive. It will be used on a 4 year old imac using os 10.3 with a usb hub and two available 2.0 firewire ports. Will be used to back up critical financial data, not very much so nothing huge is required. also, do i need to acquire back up software ?? I am familiar in backups on a pc using Nova backup but am quite eager to do this job. thanks in advance !! kb
  2. bigpics macrumors 6502


    Jul 26, 2002
    Rockland County, New York
    Google "Other World Computing."

    Mac specialists, good drives, good prices. I've bought two now - one mobile and one desk bound and am happy with the equipment and the value.

    They recommend their Mercury Elite Drives, and include a big Mac Software bundle (which I didn't use, but you might).
  3. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Whatever you get, make sure it's compatible with OS 10.3.x
  4. Dimwhit macrumors 68000


    Apr 10, 2007
    bigpics has the right of it. I recommend their dual-drive enclosure, then drop one or two drives into that (I've got a 500GB and a 750GB in mine).
  5. Mac In School macrumors 65816

    Jun 21, 2007
    How much space does this "critical financial data" take up, and is that the only thing they're backing up?

    If we're just talking about a 10 MB Quicken file here, I'd probably go with off-site backup via .Mac, or something like it.

    If they're going to buy an external hard drive anyway, why not back up everything?
  6. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    I recommend a WD Passport because they're small, they don't require their own power source (ie: they're powered by USB), and they're easily removed and put away somewhere. If you don't like Western Digital (WD), then buy a Seagate one, or whatever brand of HDDs you trust. In fact, buy 2 or 3 of them, and keep one at work, one at home, and one at your parents' home. If you buy the low capacity drives, they'll be cheap, small, portable, and easily carried off-site. These drives are simply easier to keep off-site, which is the most important thing about backing up. After all, keeping everything backed up, but in the same room may not help you much. What if you get robbed? What if there's a fire in your house. Also use flash drives if you want. They're cheap, and it's much more difficult to physically break down a flash drive than an optical one. Again, they're easy to back up to and carry away.

    I don't know about you, but the reason I don't like my full size, 3.5" backup HDD as much as my WD Passport is due to all of these things.
  7. bill hilly macrumors newbie

    Feb 12, 2008
    go all the way

    Why not go for the Time Capsule?

    It's a wireless auto backup system (500GB or 1-terabyte). It also acts as a wireless router (operate your printer, etc., wirelessly) and will back up other Macs in your wireless network. Time Capsule requires Leopard and it is not cheap, but it is a complete solution for many years.
  8. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    Seriously, IMO everyone who has posted already has suggested way more than you need. If it's just for backing up a few files just get something simple and inexpensive, no need to spend $150+ for dual drives or a OWC enclosure.

    PS: As Abstract said, make sure whatever you get is compatible with 10.3

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