What do you put on your external drive?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by frydrych, Apr 14, 2013.

  1. frydrych macrumors member

    Aug 8, 2010
    So I have a Macbook Air (128) which I'm happy with except that I fight for keeping enough free space available.

    So a nice new external drive would be the solution?

    Photos and music takes up most of the space but I wont have them with me when I leave home. Also I dont know how happy osx is with accessing locations not avaliable when starting itunes or iphoto or any other app. Will it create new libraries/preferences by default and give me trouble later? Or is there something else I can put on the external drive? Can I move apps/games to an external drive without problems? Etc, etc. I need some advice here!

    What do you keep on your external drives and is it working as expected?

  2. JohnLT13 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 9, 2012
    Boston (aka Red Sox Nation)
    Movies and Music. I use a 1TB GoFlex to store them all.
  3. ColdCase, Apr 14, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2013

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    You can create and use multiple itunes libraries, an empty or small one on the MAC, and a large one on an external drive. Holding the option key while you open itunes pulls up a menu and you select the library you want to use.


    I believe you can do the same thing with iPhoto, many photographers have multiple libraries.




    I'm pretty sure if you search back through the forum for libraries or "multiple libraries" you will find some discussion.
  4. frydrych thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 8, 2010
    I like things that just work and don't want to end up with broken dependencies, permission etc. So is there something I should avoid to put on an external drive? Multiple libraries are something I just will have to live with even if I don't like it...
  5. ColdCase, Apr 15, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2013

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    Well tons of folks use more than one library without issue. Not ideal but is a work around. You are not going to break dependencies or permissions. iTunes or iPhoto will reopen the last library you used and if it can't be found (like when your external drive is disconnected) it will ask what you want to do (open another library or create another for example). About as seamless as you can get.

    Otherwise look for files or apps you don't use when the drive is disconnected and move them there. Everyone's use is different so there are no typical items. Doesn't matter which one, just don't move the system or users folder.

    If your Air has a SD slot, you can add a 64GB card for a decent price. 128GB for a bit more $$. Acts like an external drive but SD cards are a lot easier to carry around (you can just leave them inserted if you want).
  6. RadDave macrumors regular


    Apr 6, 2013
    North Carolina
    New rMBP user - not new to iTunes but did not realize that multiple libraries could be used - now have 256 GB on the new laptop, so still plenty of space to store my music - BUT, the SD card possibility as an optional storage site seems like a good choice for me - thanks for the comments - :)
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
  8. frydrych thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 8, 2010
    Nice! SD card might actually be an option, thanks!
  9. wolfpuppies3 macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2012
    Virginia, USA
    Four external drives
    1. Time machine, backing up hourly
    2. Carbon Copy Clone backing up once daily
    3. Photos ( close to 400 GB)
    4. WiFi 1 TB, a copy of #3 above for wireless use with iPads.

    The standard advice is "back up, back up, back up." I add the wifi drive for a fourth "back up" and a wireless usage. It normally lives in a fireproof safe separate from my MB.
  10. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Jul 1, 2004
    Is the drive powered on while in the fireproof safe and can you actually write to it?

    Also, which model do you have? What are the read/write speeds? Overall, how do you like it?
  11. Idarzoid macrumors 6502

    Mar 15, 2013
    I have a 2TB WD My Passport with 2 partitions.

    200GB for Time Machine
    1.8TB (almost full) for movies and stuff, majority of the contents there are copied from my PC's 2TB drive with similar contents.
  12. stchman macrumors 6502a

    Jul 16, 2012
    St. Louis, MO
    Reason I got the 256GB SSD. A 128GB SSD I would be crowded, but 256GB is more than plenty.

    I have my SSD partitioned into OS and my stuff. I just back up my stuff to my WD Passport USB 3.0 drive.
  13. JHUFrank macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2010
    I too upgraded to a 256 used Apple SSD. Then added a nifty mini with a 64gb sd card. Also use a WD 500gb external drive for carrying around big stuff that I dont want on the internal, plus a CCC backup.
    Time Machine to my NAS on my wireless network.

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