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Can I Use the Same Storage To Back Up My iMac & My MacBook Pro?

If I have an external hard drive is it possible to have 2 separate backups one for each of my computers (iMac & MacBook Pro) or would I require 2 separates external drives, one for each?

Comments: 5 Responses to “Can I Use the Same Storage To Back Up My iMac & My MacBook Pro?”

    2 years ago

    You can do it with one, but there are two main disadvantages. One is that you have to disconnect and reconnect the drive all the time. You’ll be spending a lot of time doing that, which would also mean that you probably won’t be backing up as much as you should.
    The one other problem is that you’ll be sharing space on the drive for each backup, which means you’ll run out of space faster. So each backup will have less of a history.
    External drives are cheap. Why not get one for each backup?
    Also, maybe consider using iCloud if you are not already and syncing all of the files between the computers. That has many advantages and maybe you are already doing it. If so, what is on your laptop that is not on your iMac? So maybe just a backup of the iMac will backup everything. That is the case for me, but I’m not sure what your situation is.

    Larry Newman
    2 years ago

    Along the same lines… MacBook Pros use the new Apple file system instead of HFS. This requires a solid state hard drive. Do you format the backup drive as HFS? Does it matter? Just a thought since I’m thinking of buying a MacBook Pro …

    2 years ago

    Larry: The new file system is for SSDs only. It would be a waste to use an SSD as an external backup drive. Just a normal HDD is what you need. And since that can’t use the new file system, you just use regular HFS, yes. But Time Machine takes care of the formatting for you when you select the drive, so it isn’t something you even need to pay attention to.

    Lali Raj
    2 years ago

    Gary that means for backing up using time machine in highsierra to an external hard drive HFS formatted WDC drive can be used?

    2 years ago

    Lali: Yes. In fact, that’s what you should be doing. It doesn’t make sense to waste an SSD external drive for a backup. A HDD is all you need, and it would be formatted HFS (let Time Machine format it, even).

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