Using an External HDD to back-up my External HDD?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Khryz, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. Khryz macrumors 6502a

    Jan 7, 2007
    I have a 1TB OWC External HDD that I like and gives me very little problems. Thing is, I know the current reliability rate of external HDD's are not that good and I would HATE to lose tons of stuff that I have saved on my OWC HDD due to an error or a problem.

    Is it possible for me to buy a second external HDD to use to back-up my OWC HDD I have now? Sort of as a back-up to my back-up?

    A lot of this data is irreplaceable but just wondering if this is common or not?
  2. waw74 macrumors 68030

    May 27, 2008
    external and internal drives are basically the same, the internals have a slightly lower chance of being jostled around though (unless it's a laptop) so they might last longer.

    perfectly acceptable to back up to another external hard drive.
  3. diazj3 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2008
  4. Khryz thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 7, 2007
    The thing is my external HDD is not a back-up of my computer - it has roughly 300 GB of data while my computer has 50. So it's not like I can just buy another HDD and connect it to my computer to copy .. I need to copy my other external HDD.

    So how do I copy the data on an external HDD? I have a FW 400 and (2) USB on my Macbook. So do I have to for example plug in my current HDD to a USB port and then plug in the new HDD to a FW 400 port and then when they're both visible in Finder - I use SuperDuper to copy my current HDD?

    Walk me through this if you can .. thanks!
  5. waw74 macrumors 68030

    May 27, 2008
    Yes... it is.

    you can have multiple externals connected. just plug them both in, using whatever ports you can, even both usb is fine, if you only have one port available, just get a usb hub.

    they will both show up in finder, and copy stuff from one to the other. or use the programs that diazj3 suggested.
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Here's what to do:

    1. Get ahold of CarbonCopyCloner -- freeware, and excellent.

    2. Get one of these:

    3. Order a "bare" SATA hard drive from somewhere like Lately, I think Seagates are the best. (note: over at, I saw a 1tb Seagate on sale from for $45, after mail-in rebate)

    4. Connect the dock, put the SATA drive in, fire it up, initialize the bare drive.

    5. Connect your _other_ external drive.

    6. Use CCC to "dupe" the contents of the existing external drive to the new one.

    7. When done, take the bare drive and store it in a drawer or container until the next time you need to update the backup. CCC can do "incremental" backups as well as full dupes.

    8 You will find the SATA docking station useful for other tasks in the future, as well.
  7. diazj3 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2008
    Fishrrman's advice is correct. You can either get the Sata docking station - there are other available at OWC, plus the bare drives... or you can get a USB or FW external drive - if it FW, you could daisychain them... or you can get a USB and/or firewire enclosure for the drive.

    The steps on CCC or superduper are self-explanatory.

  8. jackdrogba macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2010
    If portability is your first target, you may get another external hdd. However, you need also regard "Heat Shrinkable, hard drive stability and Real Transfer Speed". So, a sata hdd dock with fw usb or e-SATA is really a nice solution. Just buy another internal 2.5 or 3.5 inch hard disk and use a hdd docking station w/ firewire 800 (if you use a macbook). As i know, Newertech and Nexstar's hdd dock is really nice, but just a little expensive. So, if you don't need e-SATA interface, you can try this UNITEK firewire docking station from:
  9. jland macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2008
    Jack Drogba, why are you still posting these things and not identifying yourself as the owner of Espow, the site which you send people to? These are not unbiased opinions you offer, these are sales pitches. This is fraud.
  10. mangrove macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2010
    FL, USA
    Since you already know OWC, they sell a device called the Voyager (I believe) which does the same thing as the device Fishrrman provided. It works with 3.5 and 2.5" drives.

    With this device you just push the bare drive into the Voyager Q (that's the model I got) and CCC one drive to the other, pull it out and store it off site or where ever you want. I do it after a lot of new work or once a week which ever comes first.
  11. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    another option is to create a disk image of the original HDD, then restore the disk image to the new HDD. this can all be done through Disk - no need for 3rd party software.

    the command "dd" might also come in handy.

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