Sync iPhone with iTunes on external HD

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mobiletaylor, Aug 21, 2011.

  1. mobiletaylor macrumors member

    Oct 22, 2009
    I'm looking into moving my iTunes library to an external hard drive. I would use this with my MacbookPro at home. I take my MacbookPro to work everyday so would need to unplug the external hard drive. I don't mind that I won't be able to play my iTunes music/movies while I'm away from home, but I do need to be able to sync my iPhone for updated datebook/address entries. What would happen if I sync my iPhone with iTunes while the external hard drive is not connected? Will it erase everything? Maybe it just wont work? Anyone doing this?


  2. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

    May 1, 2011
    SF Bay Area
    When you disconnect the external drive iTunes will report that it can't find your music. It won't erase your phone but it will give you an error.
    Then the next time that you connect the external drive you may have to manually locate all of your music all over again. Could be a little hassle.
    You also have to be sure that your laptop assigns the same drive letter to the external drive everytime it's attached.
  3. HawaiiMacAddict macrumors 6502a

    Dec 28, 2006
    On one of my Macs of course
    What I do is take my external drive with me to work. I use a Swiss Army backpack to carry my MacBook Pro and use the front pocket of the backpack for my external drive, cables, Magic Mouse, etc... (I use the Magic Mouse when I work with Photoshop). You can have more than one iTunes library and I think you can a second one up to manage your music manually, such that it wouldn't automatically sync, but I'm not sure.

    Would it be a problem to take an external hard drive with you? If not, that's your solution - simply take the external drive with you and hook it up to your MacBook Pro while at work and you'll have everything, syncing capability as well as all of your iTunes content. If, like me, you don't have internet access, you can still enjoy your content and sync your iPhone.
  4. Los macrumors regular

    Jul 5, 2010
    As long as the external HDD has the same drive letter every time it reconnects, iTunes should locate all his music automatically. I know this since mine sometimes gets disconnected from its AC outlet because of all the cables at my desk.

    I'm not sure about synching your phone when iTunes reports that all your files are missing though.

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