Windows Playing off external Hardrive

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by EstebanLGJ, Jul 14, 2014.

  1. EstebanLGJ macrumors newbie

    EstebanLGJ

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #1
    Does anyone play off of an external Hard drive? I just ordered an early 2013 15'' rMBP with 256 SSD. I don't want to install any games on my main drive, because I want it to last and I don't think I can fit many games on it. I realized that you can just buy an external HDD and just run games off of that. I've recently bought some steam games (portal 1 & 2, GTA bundle, l4d2, dark souls ii, etc.) and I'm thinking of also getting some emulators going, possibly dolphin and a DS emulator to play some Nintendo titles.

    These are my questions for YOU:

    Does anyone do this with their gaming needs?
    Do you usually use windows or OSx?
    Also, how is the experience? Do you encounter any lag when gaming or just some loading delays or nothing noticeable at all?
    Do you recommend it? Any hard drive recommendations <$150 (USB 3, Thunderbolt, RPM, SSD)?

    I've tried looking online, but I cant really find what I need, and I think I can get a good answer on this forum.

    Thanks, let me know if you need more info.
     
  2. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2013
    #2
    I used to play games off an external drive connected to my MBP's FireWire port. It worked OK until I could afford to buy a larger capacity SSD.

    I would use a Thunderbolt enclosure with a standard hard drive so it will keep your USB ports free. An SSD won't help you much in terms of game loading times, at least not enough to justify the expense.

    If you're going to dual boot, I would suggest partitioning the external drive so you have one partition for games on OS X (using HFS+ file system) and one for games on Windows (NTFS). While you can use exFAT to read/write on both operating systems, sometimes games can act strangely, particularly those on OS X. Make sure you give yourself enough space, depending on which OS you will be gaming on most of the time.

    If you're using a Thunderbolt enclosure on Windows, make sure the drive is connected to your Mac before you power it on. Hot plugging is not supported over Thunderbolt in Windows.
     
  3. EstebanLGJ thread starter macrumors newbie

    EstebanLGJ

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #3
    I'll definetly reformat my HDD for windows and OSX thanks! Im also guessing I can still use time machine after that.
    I have a spare usb HDD laying around there, so im guessing that will do.
    Maybe if I save money down the road I'll get Thunderbolt
     
  4. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    #4
    You don't have to worry about killing your SSD by playing games from it. It will last more than the life of your computer no matter what you do with it. That said, get any USB 3.0 drive you want. Thunderbolt is not needed and is overpriced. I prefer Lacie as I think they are
    one of the more Apple-like brands around.
     
  5. EstebanLGJ thread starter macrumors newbie

    EstebanLGJ

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #5
    Oh, I just meant that I didn't want to fill up my SSD with games, not that I would kill it by installing games on it. My bad, sry

    And I do like this Lacie:
    https://www.lacie.com/products/product.htm?id=10564
    might consider ordering it in the future, seems pretty sick
     
  6. antonis macrumors 68000

    antonis

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    #6
    Booting Windows fron a TB drive (a lacie rugged TB with ssd) and playing games installed on it. Speed experience is identical to an internal ssd drive.
     
  7. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2013
    #7
    Thunderbolt offers more consistent performance than USB 3.0, though the latter is fine if price is an overwhelming consideration.

    Funny you talk about Thunderbolt being overpriced but then go on to talk about Lacie's overpriced external hard drives.
     
  8. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    #8
    The extra increase in price is not worth the cost if you're just going to be using it for playing games, and even then, only when you have an SSD inside--that's where the real cost is. Plus, thunderbolt isn't hot swappable in Windows.

    Lacie drives aren't overpriced if you don't buy from them or Apple. They definitely are not the cheapest, but they look great next to Apple hardware, and in my experience at least, they last. I have a d2 quadra that's around 7 years old and a Porshe around 9, and they are both still running great.
     

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