View Full Version : Newbie: partition (or not) on my new ext drive?

04-05-2006, 03:52 AM
Hi all,

I have one shiny new 300gig Firewire drive that I want to use both for backup of my Powerbook (120gig unformatted) AND as an extra workhorse.

Looking at your utility, it seems like a good thing to use... but I want to trial it first. Meanwhile before I do anything, I need to decide whether to leave the 300gig external drive as one large single partition or to divide it into 2 - one partition for the Powerbook backup (<120gig), the other for day to day tasks.
Whats the best approach? (or perhaps Pros/Cons between my alternatives like just using a disk image without partitions).

thanks in advance :)

04-05-2006, 10:37 AM
Hi, Sven. No need to post here and send support mail -- you just double the amount of answering I have to do!

Here's what I sent to you via email: Partition the drive into backup and data partitions. You're much better off doing that, since you'll be able to boot from the backup (assuming a Mac-supported drive), and you'll be able to isolate data from backup.

I discuss this in some detail in the User's Guide ("Storing a backup alongside other files on a destination volume"), so take a look there for extended discussion. But -- my suggestion is to partition.

Hope that helps.

04-08-2006, 01:58 PM
I used to partition my 250GB FireWire drive for my backups, but, in order to make the partitions large enough to house the backups from two other drives, I had to partition 200GB (two 100GB partitions) just for the backups. This left me with one 50GB partition that I could actually use for something else. I decided last night that I'd use sparse disk images to store the backups from now on. Yes, my backups will be mixed with other data (they are in a "backups" folder on the single partition of the FireWire hard drive now), but they are contained inside the two encrypted sparse image files. Another good thing about using these image files is the fact that I can encrypt them, keeping them away from prying eyes that may have access to the FireWire drive when I'm away from my desk. Also, moving one of these sparse images to somewhere else (a network volume, or another drive) is simple, if I need to keep a snapshot of my data, without updating it. And finally, now I can use the rest of the FireWire drive for whatever I want, and I don't have to dedicate parts of it to backups.

Here is a document by Shirt Pocket on setting up sparse image files and using them with SuperDuper: http://www.shirt-pocket.com/forums/showthread.php?t=81