What works better on an external drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by greg555, Jul 24, 2008.

  1. greg555 macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    My 250GB iMac hard drive is almost full (30GB left after emptying all the trash cans). My iPhoto library is about 60GB and my iTunes library is about the same size. So I'm thinking of moving one of them to an external 250GB USB drive.

    Which will work better from an external drive (or suck less :) )? We seldom play music or videos on the Mac (just use it for syncing iPods) so I'm thinking moving iTunes library is better.

    With iPhoto I'm often hovering over the Event box to find a certain photo so I'm thinking it would be better to keep in on the Mac HD.

    I'd appreciate any comments or suggestions.

    Thanks - Greg
     
  2. adversecamber macrumors regular

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    Jul 9, 2008
    #2
    iTunes no problem, but when I moved my iPhoto library to an external drive some really odd things happened. Namely, iTunes wouldn't recognise the photos and so I couldn't have any on my iPhone. The moment my iPhoto Library folder was back on the internal drive it was all fine again.

    The other option could be to split you iPhoto library and have all your old photos on your external drive. I have an 'Archive' folder - I selected all photos more than a year old and exported them. Pressing alt as you open iPhoto then gives the option of which iPhoto Library you want to open or to create a new folder. Do that, re-import the photos and then move them all to the external drive.
     
  3. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #3
    I would suggest getting an external FW800 drive.

    Then put both your photos and music on it.

    No matter where you put things, don't forget to make routine backups of your data.
     
  4. greg555 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Thanks for the comments.

    I have a white iMac so no FW800 for me.

    I do back-up regularly using Time Machine on an external 500GB FW400 drive (WD MyBook). It is noticeably faster than my USB drive (which I used to use for TM). So down the road I will probably buy another FireWire drive. But for now I want to use the USB drive I have for overflow data.

    Greg
     
  5. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #5
    FW400 is good, just that FW800 is better.

    Yep, spec wise USB 2.0 drives transfer at 480Mbps speeds and FW400 transfer at 400Mbps. However, in reality FW is much faster than USB. This is especially true for large data transfers.

    So you may have issues involving data transfers with the external USB drive when storing music or photos on the external USB HD.
     
  6. greg555 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    That's what I'm afraid of. Hopefully iTunes will be tolerable on an external USB drive.

    Too bad I can't pay someone local $50 (or so) to install a 500GB or 1TB internal drive (who won't void my warranty). That would be ideal.

    Greg
     
  7. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #7
    I've had trouble with USB 2.5 inch external HDs.

    Haven't tried with 3.5 inch.

    Now I have a 2.5 inch FW800 external HD. Wonderful. Just one cable for power and transfer. Usually my USB externals of 2.5 inch size require a power source. Of course they are much cheaper so that may have something to do withit.

    That sounds like a great idea.
     
  8. greg555 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    No cables sounds nice. That's one problem with iMacs: very few cables for a basic machine but you quickly have a lot of cables once you add external drives, a USB hub, a card reader, etc.

    Greg
     

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