Target Disk Mode With Thunderbolt

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by guzhogi, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. guzhogi macrumors 68030


    Aug 31, 2003
    Wherever my feet take me…
    Hello everyone, I was just wondering if you can go into Target Disk Mode using the new MacBook Pros with the Thunderbolt port? I really like & need doing it with Firewire for work. I'm the IT guy at work and if/when we get these new MBPs, would be nice to know if we could do that should a computer crash & need to get info off the drive. Thanks!
  2. k43l macrumors member

    Jul 8, 2010
  3. Dwalls90 macrumors 601


    Feb 5, 2009
    1) Not sure, I don't think anyone knows this yet, Apple has offered almost no information/support on Thunderbolt.

    2) Thunderbolt is useless unless the computer and the backup/external/other disk are both SSD. Why? Because most (all?) mechanical disks can't even write/read as fast as FW800 allows (100 MB/s). Thunderbolt really won't be useful for external drives until SSD are the norm, IMO.

    This is why prototypes of Thunderbolt externals use all SSD's (Lacie's for example)
  4. guzhogi thread starter macrumors 68030


    Aug 31, 2003
    Wherever my feet take me…
    Thanks for the responses!

    Why does it matter if I use mechanical or SSD drives when I want to use target disk mode? Only thing would be the mechanical drives wouldn't be able to use the full bandwidth.
  5. Penn Jennings, Mar 15, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2011

    Penn Jennings macrumors 6502

    Apr 22, 2010

    A decent end 7200 RPM SATA drive should have no problems saturating a FW800 connection. I have moved drives from internal to very good external FW800 enclosures and the disk performance was always much worse. I don't see how a drive with a 3000 mb interface can be fully handled by a 800 mb interface... And thats just accessing 1 drive.

    Thats just my experience.
  6. Pentad macrumors 6502a


    Nov 26, 2003
    I'm not sure you understand how FW800 actually works...

    Outside of all the technical reasons I could give you on why your statement is wrong how about simple observations? eSata is faster than FW800 and that is mechanical drive to mechanical drive. Why would you not think TB would be faster as well??
  7. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    There is also the option to RAID HDDs and stripe them.
    And FW800 does not have 100MB/s read or write speeds, it is more around 65 to 75 MB/s.
    And FW800 (as FW400 6-pin) also allows daisy chaining up to 63 Firewire devices, Thunderbolt only allows 6 devices up to now.

    Btw, many mechanical HDDs can write and read up to 120MB/s, at least the more expensive ones I used at work. But we used eSATA to connect them to the computer we use there.

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