Matching the hard drives connector to those of your laptop or desktop is also essential. Any folder that is mirrored is automatically backed up and updated as soon as you make any changes to any file within that folder. both USB 3.0 and USB-C ports. It comes with the following size options: Who in the world may need so much space, you might ask. So, whats the best size for the Time Machine backup drive? To start the process of backing up your Mac to your external drive, take your cursor to the top-left side of your desktop. On the other hand, if you have a pre 2016 MacBook, then this is a good storage for Time Machine backups. Any suggestions? And after going through the school of hard knocks, I realized how important it is to pick a write hard drive for Time Machine. If youre using an external hard drive that was previously formatted for a Windows PC or youre using it for the first time, you will need to format it to be compatible with macOS. It provides the best disk performance required for backing up data: up to 1000 MB/s for both reads and writes. Not all USB-Cs are the same, though. Once the format is complete, the drive is ready to be used This extremely durable cover provides excellent protection against dust, shock, and water. Western Digitals My Passport drive provides plenty of portable storage at a competitive price. Theres a second Thunderbolt port that will allow you to connect additional Thunderbolt and USB-C devices, and a DisplayPort 1.4 interface for an external monitor. If the backup disk gets full, the Time Machine starts deleting the oldest snapshots. They have a number of products available on the market, and most of them are very expensive. Our only complaint here is that LaCies skimpy manual doesnt provide much information about the ToolKit app, or the various formatting options for the drive, simply leaving you to wade through a bunch of FAQ files on its website. There is not a single model that is 100% fail free. If the drive fails when you need it, then its not worth even a penny. The best thing about My Passport for Mac is that it already preformatted for macOS. However, almost all drives can be used with Macs as long as The drives can be used with Time Machine for Mac backups, but LaCie offers a ToolKit app that allows you to mirror individual folders. It will withstand minor abuse, more when off than on and the disks are spinning, but your best bet with any hard drive is not to treat it like a hockey puck. Thankfully I never needed one, but its nice to have such a peace of mind option. G-Tech has always focused on providing high-performance storage devices for creative users who work with lots of photos, video, and audio files, and the G-Drive USB-C is an affordable desktop drive that provides good performance and bucket-loads of storage space. This doesn't affect our editorial independence. Backing up your files is one of the best decisions you can make as a Mac owner. may earn a small commission from some purchases made through our site. Devices produced by well known established companies have lower rates compared to drives from unknown manufacturers. Theyre available in two colors: Moon Silver and Space Gray that is intended to match the Mac. For example, while you can authorize Time Machine to do automatic backups, theres no way to program how often those backups take place. Seagates FireCuda Gaming Hub is an impressive all-in-one device that combines a speedy desktop hard drive with a versatile Thunderbolt dock. The diamond cut design simply refers to the exaggerated angular edges and corners; looks aside, the aluminum casing feels really sturdy. For many of you, knowing your files are backed up gives you the peace of mind that you can recover them should you experience any issues with your computer in the future. This means you are unable to duplicate your hard drive and easily use it to boot up your system and all its contents, without going through the full process of restoring your files. In the Disk Utility app, select the drive on the left. Pay attention to write and read performance. port you have on your Mac, you can use one or the other. In other words, the best size for Time Machine backup drive 4x to 8x of the size of the primary disk, when 2x is a minimum. At this point you dont need to do anything. Even so, that performance will be fine for routine backups, and the encryption option will be really useful if you want to make sure that your private data stays private even if the drive is lost or stolen.Cliff Joseph. Rather than do a standard backup, disk utility creates a disk image of your drive, which you can then transfer as a file to a different computer or use as backup for your current one. consider Toshiba Canvio Basics 4TB Portable External Hard Drive USB 3.0. image from my Time Machine drives. I tried multiple external hard drives, and I believe I know a thing or two about the process and type of hardware that works best with the Time Machine. Weve rounded up the best Mac hard drives above, but before making a buying decision you need to think about how youll be using the device. So, if one of the drives fails, you will not use any information, which is crucial for any computer backups. It comes with both USB 3.0 and USB-C cables, so you can use it with older and newer Macs for your backups. After encrypting your disk, you will return to the main window inside Time Machine. I cant tell you how many times I was able to recover my Macs after experiments I run in order to write articles on my site. These use larger 3.5-inch drives and tend to cover capacities from 4TB to 18TB. The Mobile Drive has a single USB-C port on the back, but LaCie includes cables for both USB-C and the older USB 3.0, so you can use the drive with any Mac or PC. You never know when you will need that old VM, and its nice to not waste prime drive space either. And, of course, you should always have an external drive available for making Time Machine back-ups in case anything ever goes wrong. The G-Drive is neatly designed with a smart, sturdy aluminum casing, and it starts with a minimum of 4TB storage, going right up to 18TB, which should be enough even for professional users working with 8K video. This is not the fastest drive, but its reliable and cheap. The USB-C port on Macs also supports Thunderbolt 3 and in some cases Thunderbolt 4. There are several alternatives out there that offer different features than Time Machine that some users may find attractive. Backing up the contents of your Mac is simple. Not only does this free up storage space, it can also improve the overall performance of your Mac. Its very solidly built too, so wed be happy to use it in outdoor locations with our MacBook. Your email address will not be published. The transfer speed of USB 3.0 is limited to 10.0 Gbit/s max. The iCloud saved files usually have to open first before the files are seen. To know the current format of the external drive, use the Disk Utility app. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to As mentioned above, all drives are compatible with Apple That might be a smart TV, Apple TV, a tablet or laptop. Ive been using Time Machine, a built-in backup program developed by Apple since I bought my first Mac. If you need a faster drive go with the USB-C SSD option. Which makes it the best choice for someone who travels a lot or even someone who carries the laptop and its accessories to school or work daily. Subscribe to the Macworld Digital Magazine. On the right, under the name of the drive, there will be information about the current format. Dont forget your password, as without it you wont be able to access your backups. The best external hard drive for Time Machine backups on Macs is Samsung T7 SSD Touch. There are certain qualities that I look for when considering hard drives for any backup. Carbonite (read our Carbonite review or check out Carbonites website here) is another fantastic option, especially when it comes to restoring your Mac. USB-C is based on USB 3.1 and offers up to 10Gbps. When you purchase through links in our articles, we may earn a small commission. Select it and press continue., If you have made several backups, choose which one you want to restore and press continue.. How can these files be backed up on an external drive if they have to go through this process first? produce quality hard drives: The second most important factor is storage capacity. Yes, price is important, but I want to reiterate the importance of reliability over the price. Sure, this is time-consuming, but it gives you control over what files you keep on your Mac and what files you delete. Do you know of a better alternative? There are several ways to remove unwanted files. Time Machine is a built-in application for macOS that allows you to backup files such as documents, photos, and apps. If you are looking for the ultimate speed champion, than check X5. The downside of this approach is that you will not be able to have incremental Time Machine snapshots, because you cant connect multiple Macs to the same drive physically. The 4TB drive is still small enough to slip into jacket pocket with no trouble at all. Time Machine will automatically backup your Mac and notify you how much time it will take to complete. This is a good option if you use your Mac at work, and have individual projects organized in their own folders. Its a little bigger than a matchbox and weighs just 2 oz. This is like a wireless jukebox you can fill with videos, photos and music. Select it, and then tap erase at the top of the screen. You will see the option to encrypt backups. We recommend selecting this option as it adds further security for your files and keeps them safe from unwanted third parties gaining access to them. I've been working with computers for more than 20 years and I am passionate about Apple products. Its not just for gaming, of course, and its available with 1TB, 2TB or 5TB of storage, so it provides plenty of room for all your music, photos, videos, and work files. For MacBooks, I would still stick with Samsung T7. Do i need to keep each back up file or just the most recent? To begin formatting, ensure your external drive is connected to your Mac. One way to start it is by using Spotlight Search: hold Command and hit Spacebar. These ports are only for charging, though, so you cant use the D10 as a dock for connecting peripherals such as a printer or memory stick.Cliff Joseph. Theyll need to be plugged in for power; thats fine if it stay home all of the time, or moves from office to office. Read our best NAS drivesfeature for more. From here, well show you everything you need to do to create and save a backup of all your files, starting with tips on what you should do before you begin your backup. When you select it, you will move to the next window. So far, weve been discussing 2 to 5 TB drives. What disk format is best for Time Machine? You have to go through each category individually and identify which files you no longer need. computers as long as they have proper connectors. While 5TB may sound big, some people may find it not adequate for their needs. Drives that are 2TB or less are physically smaller, measuring inches (121.687.810 millimeters and weigh a more modest 0.5 pounds (200 grams). The device is available in a number of storage sizes: By default, LinkStation 12TB is shipped configured as RAID 1 (Disk mirroring). Portable drives are usually bus-powered, too. And T7 is crazy fast. Its never been easy to upgrade the storage in Macs, so its always a good idea to buy an external drive to provide extra storage for all your work files, photos, videos and games. The device is so small that it can fit in your shirt pocket. The main factor in selection is reliability. For most users, it offers what they need to backup their Mac. I intentionally infected my poor MacBook with malware, installed keyloggers, deleted parts of the operating system, and did other things that normal people usually avoid. The My Passport starts at just $79.99/49.99 for 1TB storage, going up to $189/119.99 for 5TB, so its a really affordable backup option if youre on a tight budget. Copyright 2022 IDG Communications, Inc. Additionally, each LaCie drive comes with a complimentary 3-year recovery service. There are plenty of choices, too, with compact, portable hard drives designed for use with laptops, and desktop drives with very larger capacities if you really need a lot of storage. (If its an SSD you are after, read Best external SSD for Mac.). Its a good idea to do this, as restoring your Mac may take several hours, depending on the size of your backup. A NAS is particularly useful if you want to set up a media server at home. Mac, i.e., format it. Partially, it was due to the fast SSD inside and partially due to the USB-C connector. We recommend selecting exFAT, as it can backup files of any size, whereas FAT32 is limited to files of up to 4GB. Also, note that this external device is pretty big and it is not strictly portable. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. How to Access the Deep Web and the Dark Net, How to Securely Store Passwords in 2022: Best Secure Password Storage, How to Create a Strong Password in 2022: Secure Password Generator & 6 Tips for Strong Passwords, MP4 Repair: How to Fix Corrupted Video Files in 2019, Alternatives to Time Machine for Backing up Mac, How to Backup Mac Without an External Hard Drive, Before You Backup Your Mac to an External Hard Drive, Restoring Your Mac With a Time Machine Backup. Once youre connected, select launchpad, find the other folder and select disk utility.. It even allows you to customize the lighting and colors emitted from the drives front panel. That makes it a good option for anyone that needs a fast drive for large video, photos, and audio files. The drives performance is similar to that of other compact hard drives that weve seen, recording read and write speeds of 133MBps and 130MBps respectively. Theres also a version of the 1big Dock available that uses faster solid-state storage tooof course, its quite a bit more expensive.Cliff Joseph. Additionally, Samsung T7 comes with fingerprint security, not available in other comparable drives. We give you the scoop on what's new, what's best and how to make the most out of the products you love. iDrive is one of the more popular backup solutions (read our iDrive review or check out the website here).