Switcher needs some HD help!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Busters, Jun 14, 2009.

  1. Busters macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    #1
    I got some great advice on this board before when I was contemplating switching back to Mac and when I saw a "new" refurb Mini (with 120GB HD) in the Apple store I jumped on it!
    I'm very excited to be back on a Mac but I need a little help with my setup.

    What I want to do: Be able to access my documents from my girlfriends macbook on my home network and possibility access those files over the internet. Also, back up everything with Time Machine.

    Here's what I'm thinking I need to/will do:
    1. Buy an external 1TB hard drive for Time Machine
    2. Buy another external HD (500GB - 1TB) to use to hold all of my docs (music, movies and other documents)
    3. Plug both into my Airport Extreme (I'm picking up tomorrow) using a USB hub and use the Airport disk utility to set up one external hard drive for sharing and one for Time Machine.

    My questions:
    1. Will this setup work?
    Meaning can I attach two hard drives to the Airport Extreme and assign them each a different function?

    2. Is this the best setup for what I want to do?
    I can also upgrade the size of the internal hard drive in the Mini or attach an external hard drive directly to the Mini but then can I share these files easily over the network and access from the internet like I can with the Airport disk utility? I'm not a "power user" and am not so much worried about slower access speeds via USB on the Airport vs Firewire or Esata.

    3. Can I do the same basic setup with an Airport Express instead of an Airport Extreme and save myself about $100?

    4. Will Time Machine allow me to backup multiple hard drives onto one hard drive?
    The internal hard drive which will probably hold my applications and the external which will hold docs.

    Thanks for the helping out a noob!
     
  2. Vak macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    #2
    I'm interested in the hearing some feedback on this too for I'm just switching over myself and our needs sound pretty similar.

    A little help for the noobs, please! :)
     
  3. dborja macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Location:
    Northern California
    #3
    1. Will this setup work?
    Meaning can I attach two hard drives to the Airport Extreme and assign them each a different function?
    Yes.

    2. Is this the best setup for what I want to do?
    I can also upgrade the size of the internal hard drive in the Mini or attach an external hard drive directly to the Mini but then can I share these files easily over the network and access from the internet like I can with the Airport disk utility? I'm not a "power user" and am not so much worried about slower access speeds via USB on the Airport vs Firewire or Esata.
    Yes, I'm configured this way too.

    You can certainly upgrade your Mini and attach the 1TB drive to it and share your drives. On the plus side, transfer rate from the internal disk is faster on the Mini. On the minus side, you'll need to keep your Mini on for you to access the data from your girlfriend's Mac.

    As far as access over Internet, I haven't tried doing this so somebody else might have the answer. The current AEBS firmware is supposed to allow access over the Internet through MobileMe iDisk but it's pretty flaky so I'm running the previous version. I'm waiting for an update from Apple to make it stable.


    3. Can I do the same basic setup with an Airport Express instead of an Airport Extreme and save myself about $100?
    I believe the Express can only share printers.

    4. Will Time Machine allow me to backup multiple hard drives onto one hard drive?
    The internal hard drive which will probably hold my applications and the external which will hold docs.
    Yes

    Thanks for the helping out a noob!
    No problem. Hope this helps...
     
  4. Busters thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    #4
    By "this way too" do you mean you're upgrading the internal HD in the Mini or using an external (attached to the Mini directly or the Airport Extreme)?

    Oh, and thanks for the help!
     
  5. dborja macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Location:
    Northern California
    #5
    I'm sorry, I was referring to this: "3. Plug both into my Airport Extreme (I'm picking up tomorrow) using a USB hub and use the Airport disk utility to set up one external hard drive for sharing and one for Time Machine."

    In my case, I have USB hub connected to the AEBS where my two drives are, in turn, connected. Sometimes, I even hook up a portable drive and a USB memory stick as third drives when I'm transferring stuff between home and work...
     
  6. Busters thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    #6
    Thanks!

    So it seems in terms of upgrading the storage capacity of the Mini the advantage of upgrading the internal hard drive is:
    a bit less expensive
    a "cleaner" solution
    accesses a bit quicker

    While the advantage of adding on an external hard drive is:
    portability
    an easily networked drive
    a drive that can (with MobileMe) be accessed from outside your home network.

    Right?
     
  7. dborja macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Location:
    Northern California
    #7
    Well put! You can also access your Mini's internal hard drive (and any attached external drive) through Back to My Mac from another Mac in your network.
     

Share This Page