Time Machine hits my external HD way too often

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Gherkin, Nov 28, 2007.

  1. Gherkin macrumors 6502

    Apr 9, 2004
    Why is my external HD firing up and making noise when it's not on a scheduled update? Shouldn't Time Machine only access the HD every hour, do what it has to do, and then shut off till the next hour?

    Also, sometimes I'll right click an item in finder, go to the "Open with..." option, and the list of apps to open with will not show up, the external HD will start to rev up like it's being accessed, and then like 4 seconds later the list of apps will pop up.

    Maybe all of this wouldn't be so annoying if my external HD was silent. The one I have is only like 2 years old, but still it makes a noticeable amount of noise. Anyone's external HD silent? What brand?
  2. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    The second issue you mention is completely normal. Mac OS X activates all connected drives, just in case you navigate to one of them, when a Open or Save dialog is presented. Regarding the first issue: You're not alone.
  3. pna macrumors 6502

    May 27, 2005
    If you don't need huge capacity, the Western Digital Passport series of external notebook-sized (2.5") hard drives are dead silent. Slower than a 3.5" for sure, but for a small hourly backup and the occasional access, it won't matter. The prices have really fallen, and it's common to see the 250 GB for less than $150. This is actually cheaper than just buying the bare 2.5" 250 GB drive, and the enclosure is quite nice. Even better, they're powered off of a single USB port, whereas every time I've built a similarly sized external hard drive, it's always needed to use two usb ports to spin up.

    Other than that, WD just came out with some "green power" models of their 3.5" drives, or some such other 'green' designation, that typically run quieter, and rotate a little slower than standard . I'd look into getting one of those and putting it into a fanless enclosure.
  4. VideoFreek macrumors 6502


    May 12, 2007
    Are you sure it's TM? I noticed the behavior you described until I disabled Spotlight indexing of the backup drive. Now my drive goes to sleep and wakes up only hourly for the TM backups.

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