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One HD to Mac and PC together?

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One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Pitchfork » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:23 pm

Can I use a single HD (usb drive) that is plugged in to both a Mac and PC and they both use it as a shared drive to swap files between each other?

I have been using a Mac and an old Laptop PC and used the PC's internal drive 4200rpm to share files, but thought an seperate dedicated USB2 faster drive could be plugged in via USB hanging off both Computers to swap files??

I know that I can't for any reason use the same file at the same time on each computer (boo...) but would love to edit in the PC and save to the drive, and then access the same file in the Mac..

Would a 200-500Gb 7200rpm drive be quicker and via USB2, be a better bet than using a 40Gb slow 4200rpm internal old PC drive?

I'm thinking yes?
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby BJG145 » Wed Dec 26, 2012 4:31 pm

No can do. Connect to a single machine and then share via a network, or get a NAS.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Pitchfork » Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:10 am

BJG145 wrote:No can do. Connect to a single machine and then share via a network, or get a NAS.

Thanks

I've never heard of this before, but as its Networked, am I right in thinking it connects to my router instead of a computer so it can be seen by any computers for file swapping?
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby BJG145 » Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:46 am

Yep...NAS = Networked Attached Storage, basically a box with a disk drive, a network socket and its own mini OS (probably Linux-based) for management. You'd better read up on them a bit before purchasing in case there are any pitfalls...eg see:

http://gizmodo.com/5067201/how-to-choose-the-best-network-storage-for-a-macpc-home

...although that's from 2008...or...

http://www.pcworld.com/article/252727/network_attached_storage_today_s_best_boxes.html

(Never tried using one with a Mac, let along Mac/PC sharing. You might find them slower than physically attached devices, depending on your network. Not sure how to compare, eg, USB2 against a 100 or 1000 network switch, though someone else might. Here's a SOS NAS thread from earlier this year.)

http://www.soundonsound.com/forum/showf ... ost1018264
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Exalted Wombat » Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:55 am

Pitchfork wrote:Can I use a single HD (usb drive) that is plugged in to both a Mac and PC and they both use it as a shared drive to swap files between each other?

USB is a lousy way of setting up a network (which is essentially what you're asking for).

As you're posting here, you have Internet. Are both computers connected? If so, you've basically got a network already. Drives can be shared.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby DAGGILARR » Thu Dec 27, 2012 1:55 pm

Very simple I do this no problems. I have the drive formatted as mac journaled and I have THIS installed on the PC and the I use one of THESE to switch between machines. very low cost solution.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby The Elf » Thu Dec 27, 2012 3:21 pm

As Wombat said, there's absolutely no need for a switcher of any kind. Just share the drives over the network - that's what networks are for!
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby DAGGILARR » Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:53 am

What is the preferred format for an HDD that is shared over the network and will be 'cross-platform'?
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:33 am

Sometimes routers have a USB port that you can connect a USB drive to and which will then be visible across the network. There may be others, but as far as I am aware the format that works best for both read and write between Mac and PC is FAT32. Bizarrely, Mac OS can format bigger FAT32 drives than can Windows.

If the files you want to swap are not large then no-one has mentioned Dropbox yet. This uses the Internet and cloud services to make file sharing trivially simple. Once the software is installed on both computers all you need do is drop a file in the Dropbox folder on one computer and it automagically appears in the Dropbox folder on the other computer. We use it for sharing files between Macs and PCs all the time. It is also extremely useful for sharing files with customers.

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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby DAGGILARR » Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:15 pm

I use drop box and this was my initial intention for it but it can take an age to upload stuff so I end up whacking it on a dongle. I am about to get a new router so this USB port idea is good news, any recommends for a decent router. needs to be dual band. As far as I am aware FAT 32 has a File size limit of 4GB so I would probably go for Mac Journaled or NTFS and have the appropriate bit of software on one of the machines. the system I use at the moment is fine for me but the network solution would work much better for the whole house to share stuff
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Pete Kaine » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:05 pm

The's loads for a decent price these days. Normally I go for Netgear or D-link but I'm not too up on the current models as I've not had need for a new one for a while. The Dlink DIR-636L appears to tick all the boxes however for around £40 I think.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby chris... » Sat Jan 05, 2013 10:54 am

DAGGILARR wrote:What is the preferred format for an HDD that is shared over the network and will be 'cross-platform'?

You mean filesystem format: FAT32, NTFS, HFS+ etc etc ?

The answer is: it makes no difference. The format is hidden to systems accessing a file share over the network.


ConcertinaChap wrote:Sometimes routers have a USB port that you can connect a USB drive to and which will then be visible across the network. There may be others, but as far as I am aware the format that works best for both read and write between Mac and PC is FAT32.

That's where you're trying to physically plug a drive into a Mac and PC (not at the same time), as opposed to using a network.

If using a network, it doesn't matter. So choose a robust modern filesystem (ie. preferably *not* FAT-whatever). If the disk to be shared will be physically attached to a Mac, then format it HFS+, and NTFS if it'll be attached to a PC. The other computers using it over the network won't know or care.

If instead you buy a NAS, the NAS will want to use whatever format it wants to use. (but that'll be hidden from your computers).
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Madman_Greg » Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:45 am

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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby chris... » Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:49 pm

Great for transferring stuff - but of course you have to dismount/eject the thing before moving it, so only one computer can use it at a time. Depends on what's wanted to be accomplished, really.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Martin Walker » Mon Jan 07, 2013 12:04 pm

Hi Madman_Greg!

That's a very sensible alternative at a very reasonable price


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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Pitchfork » Mon Jan 07, 2013 12:14 pm

Madman_Greg wrote:

why not get one of these

64GB, £21...

Great idea but long winded for me using lots of files open and editing, i'll have to close all open files, eject, transfer to Mac, find, open, if they are not edited correctly?, close, eject, swap over, fire up, launch samples again to edit

You see my point, I think this is why a network drive or cable mayb easier?
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Fen_Tigger » Mon Jan 07, 2013 1:17 pm

I have a Bufalo 1TB NAS that has some Linux-based HDD format that both Windows and OSX can read/write, and it works well. The only arse about is that it doesn't mount on OSX (10.6) automatically, but if you use Automount Maker (free I think, but it is pesterware), you can mount the NAS at startup. I haven't used it much on OSX 10.7 as I stopped sharing an iTunes library with the PC, but I've got a feeling it'll automount. Hope that helps.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Madman_Greg » Mon Jan 07, 2013 1:21 pm

Martin Walker wrote:Hi Madman_Greg!

That's a very sensible alternative at a very reasonable price


Martin

The data is then in 3 places at various currency levels

The PC, the MAC, the memory stick.

So you are probably never going to loose every thing completely due to disk failure.
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Re: One HD to Mac and PC together?

Postby Madman_Greg » Mon Jan 07, 2013 1:23 pm



If you have an old PC / laptop lying around, you might like to consider this.

http://www.freenas.org/
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