Time Machine: What Size External HDD for backups?

xlr8or

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 9, 2013
38
0
I'm considering a late 2012 Mac mini with the 1TB Fusion Drive. Since I've only got about 200-250GB of data on an old laptop that I'll be putting on the new mini, what size external HDD do I need to get? Any suggestions?

Also, can Time Machine be set for daily backups instead of hourly?

Sorry for so many questions - Mac noobie here.

Thanks
 

flynz4

macrumors 68040
Aug 9, 2009
3,125
35
Portland, OR
I'm considering a late 2012 Mac mini with the 1TB Fusion Drive. Since I've only got about 200-250GB of data on an old laptop that I'll be putting on the new mini, what size external HDD do I need to get? Any suggestions?

Also, can Time Machine be set for daily backups instead of hourly?

Sorry for so many questions - Mac noobie here.

Thanks
Since HDDs do not change price linearly with capacity... it makes sense to pay a tiny bit more for additional capacity. With 2TB drives well under $100 now... you may find that you you save almost nothing (may $10 or so) to get much less capacity.

BTW: the rule of thumb is 2X the size of the drive you are backing up. I would assume that you will eventually fill the 1TB... so I would go with 2TB.

/Jim
 

Volkan1984

macrumors member
Feb 7, 2013
68
0
For changing the interval of backups, please look at this tool: https://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/26704/timemachineeditor
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
I'm considering a late 2012 Mac mini with the 1TB Fusion Drive. Since I've only got about 200-250GB of data on an old laptop that I'll be putting on the new mini, what size external HDD do I need to get? Any suggestions?

Also, can Time Machine be set for daily backups instead of hourly?

Sorry for so many questions - Mac noobie here.

Thanks
As was suggested 2 times the size of the drive you're backing up is a good rule of thumb. Although with the low price difference between 2 and 3TB external drives you might want to consider a 3TB.

As for frequency of backup, having had drives fail, I would recommend no more than a 2 or 3 hour window between backups and truthfully there is usually no reason not to leave it at the default.
 
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opinio

macrumors 65816
Mar 23, 2013
1,171
4
I'm considering a late 2012 Mac mini with the 1TB Fusion Drive. Since I've only got about 200-250GB of data on an old laptop that I'll be putting on the new mini, what size external HDD do I need to get? Any suggestions?

Also, can Time Machine be set for daily backups instead of hourly?

Sorry for so many questions - Mac noobie here.

Thanks
I have the same mini with a fusion wiht about the same data (330GB).

I have a 2TB. After about 3 months it is only about 1/3 full.

If you do not have a virtual machine (parallels) you will use far less TM drive.
 

MacGizmo

macrumors 65816
Apr 27, 2003
1,428
780
Arizona
I agree with flynz4, twice the size of the drive is the best start. But the larger the TM drive, the more backups you can store before TimeMachine starts overwriting the old stuff. If you create/edit a LOT of files, then the larger drive will be well worth the money if you consider TimeMachine to be your only backup (which is a bad idea, by the way).