Should I get a 2TB Time Capsule for college?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by wanyuenmei, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. wanyuenmei macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2013
    #1
    My school allows me to use a wireless router in my room so I was wondering if I should get the new Airport Extreme and a 2TB hard drive or a 2TB Time Capsule? I'll also be getting the new MBA or rMBP when it comes out, so I'll be able to take advantage of the new wireless speed.
     
  2. errol macrumors 6502

    errol

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #2
    I think the time capsule would make sense. If you bought the airport extreme and a 2TB hard drive, the cost would be very similar. In a dorm room, space is limited, so I imagine you would want to be as minimalistic as possible.
     
  3. Brandon263 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2009
    Location:
    Beaumont, CA
    #3
    If you have a wired ethernet connection in your room, there's honestly no reason to get an Airport or Time Capsule unless you have wads of cash to spend. I would just buy a 1gb or 2 GB drive to use for backup if needed, but with Dropbox/iCloud even that isn't necessary unless you've got loads of music and movies (but even then,Spotify/iTunes Match/Netflix, etc. are good alternatives to carrying around loads of GB of potentially corruptible files -- you get the point).
     
  4. wanyuenmei thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2013
    #4
    Well my reason for the Airport/Time Capsule would be because I want wifi on my other devices, eg my phone. Plus there's only one ethernet port per person in the room.
     
  5. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    Location:
    ATL
    #5
    Expensive. Can still be stolen, can burn down.

    Just get you a apple certified used airport express to enable wifi for your new Macbook. The Dual Antenna 5ghz 300mbps airport express will likely be faster than your college's 100baseT network, and even if not, faster than they'll allow you to access the internet. 801.11ac likely pointless.

    Get Mozy to keep school projects backed up. 2GB free, depending on major should be plenty. Is/was for EE and all my personal finance documents.

    Get Dropbox/Box/skydrive/Drive/etc for day to day documents and syncing.
     
  6. errol macrumors 6502

    errol

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #6
    A used airport express would be around $80-90, plus a 1TB drive would be another $100. At this point, $100 more would get him a new time capsule with the newest tech.
     
  7. wanyuenmei thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2013
    #7
    Yea that's what I thought. Plus even if I got the express, I'd still want a 2TB hard drive, which would cost around $150-180? So I may as well get the Time Capsule. I think? x)
     
  8. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040

    FreakinEurekan

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    #8
    Plus the previous generation Express doesn't officially support using external drives for Time Machine (which apparently the current 6th gen Express does).

    As others said, I'd go for the TC. The $100 difference in price is comparable to the cost of an external 2TB drive, so may as well have it all in one unit for convenience.

    You could of course get a 5th gen TC refurbished for $199, that would serve you very well at a substantial savings compared to the 6th gen.
     
  9. oneMadRssn macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #10
    Keep in mind that although the school might allow you to use a wireless AP in the dorm, their network might block some of the ports used for time machine backups, or block AFP entirely; or they might put the TC and your computer on different subnets, making them invisible to eachother on AFP.

    For wifi in a college dorm, I would follow the Keep It Simple Stupid rule. Just get a cheapo AP and chuck it after a year or two.
     
  10. iAppl3Fan macrumors 6502a

    iAppl3Fan

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    #11
    Get the new Time Capsule. The hacked solution of an external hdd on an Airport is a headache.
     
  11. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #12
    However a wireless router would create a LAN within the dorm room with no blockage between devices in the room. An added advantage is the firewall provided by the router that would protect one's equipment from "snooping" by "curious" other students or admins.

    And another vote for buying a refurbished TC.
     
  12. oneMadRssn macrumors 68040

    oneMadRssn

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #13
    I highly doubt the school would be ok with him running another DHCP and NAT within their network. Generally, IT people hate it when people do that.

    Doesn't mean he can't do it and get away with it, but it's deff not a sure thing.
     
  13. errol macrumors 6502

    errol

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    #14
    This is a great point. Plus, if you are in a dorm with some engineering students, they're probably good at hacking and your wifi could be a security risk.
     
  14. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #15
    As almost always... I agree with talmy. He is one of the clearest thinkers on MR.

    You already know that your schools allows you to use a router... so the concern about having a NAT/DHCP is moot. Even if they didn't like it... there is little that they would likely do.

    Getting a TC gives you a secure private LAN (use WPA2 with a tough (~20+ bit passcode)... and the TC also gives you local backup. You can take it with you after you leave college. It is all in one simple box. Just do it.

    BTW: I bought a TC for each of my daughters when they left home and went away to college. As they moved rooms, came back for the summer, moved into apartments in town... or whatever... their TC went with them. Works perfectly.

    /Jim
     
  15. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    #16
    I also agree with this advice. The University won't see anything on your LAN, and if they say you can have a router, than that means they allow it. It will enhance security of your devices and give you the backup device you need. For $200, it's a pretty good deal. Just make sure you have a really strong password for your WiFi and change it regularly.
     
  16. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #17
    I based my comments on the OP saying that his school allowed "wireless routers" in the room. Personally, I'm amazed they allow even private wireless access points in the rooms. Think of the radio congestion!
     
  17. wanyuenmei thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2013
    #18
    Well my future college happens to be one of the best engineering schools in the world. I don't think IT usually has a problem considering the school's general expertise in a subject like computer science.

    I agree with the 20+ character password and changing the password regularly. As much as I'll hate doing it... It's a necessary safety precaution.
     

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