9 Replies Latest reply: Jul 12, 2012 6:54 PM by capaho
capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

My three-year-old time capsule celebrated the expiration of its extended protection plan by dying.  It's completely dead, so I suspect the power supply has gone bye bye.  Great data protection, Apple!  Any suggestions on a suitable replacement?  By suitable, I mean reliable.

  • 1. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    jakeloveslucy Level 2 Level 2 (325 points)

    What are you looking for in a "replacement"?

     

    Do you use your Time Capsule for Time Machine backups?

  • 2. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

    jakeloveslucy wrote:

     

    What are you looking for in a "replacement"?

     

    Do you use your Time Capsule for Time Machine backups?

     

    I am primarily looking for network storage for backup.  I have a router with a USB port that can be used for a network drive, but I want a drive that is reliable.  I've heard too many dead TC stories from others, including one involving a recent lawsuit against Apple, before mine dropped dead.  I think replacing my dead TC with a new TC would be foolish.

  • 3. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    LaPastenague Level 8 Level 8 (35,375 points)

    I think replacing my dead TC with a new TC would be foolish.

    3years is about the lifespan of most things in soho electronics world.. also hard disks themselves are not necessarily more reliable than that. TC is reasonably priced.. just dispose of them before the 3years expiry of applecare.

     

    For a desktop computer an external drive is better than network.. use usb.. firewire or thunderbolt.. connected disk going up in price and speed.

     

    For network drives.. you need a device that actually works with Time Machine.. so it is not just plugging a hard disk into a usb router.. it has to have recent TM extensions upgrades..

     

    Any of the major nas sellers have suitable products.. Synology, QNAP being favourites.. or you can use a network shared drive amongst your computers that is formatted HFS+. Some homemade type NAS can also handle HFS+ like freeNAS and will be far more reliable as you can build using known quality hardware components. But none of these options is going to save you money.

  • 4. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

    LaPastenague wrote:

     

    3years is about the lifespan of most things in soho electronics world.. also hard disks themselves are not necessarily more reliable than that. TC is reasonably priced.. just dispose of them before the 3years expiry of applecare.

     

    For a desktop computer an external drive is better than network.. use usb.. firewire or thunderbolt.. connected disk going up in price and speed.

     

    A five-year life cycle is pretty much an industry standard for computers and related equipment.  Failure after three years is just not acceptable for a data protection device, and it seems to be a common problem for Time Capsules.  Does a Time Capsule need its own backup device? 

     

    As for external drives, they're preferable if you have only one computer, but for multiple computers, a network device is far more cost effective, assuming it's reliable.

  • 5. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    LaPastenague Level 8 Level 8 (35,375 points)

    Does a Time Capsule need its own backup device? 

     

     

    Time capsule is not a NAS.. it is not designed to store files.. it is a backup target for TM on the computer.. so the whole idea of the TC is a backup .. if it goes bad.. you get a new one and restart the backup.. it was never designed as a single location for files.. which would need mirrored drives and some decent rsync style backup.

     

    I agree with you, the design of the TC is flawed.. it should last much longer.. but remember it is for home use only and is including a wireless router.. so it is for laptops in particular which only connect by wireless to the network and are seldom properly backed up. It is slow for ethernet..but that is not an issue for wireless.

     

    If you take the design and work with Apple philosophy.. looking pretty is far more important than functionality or lifespan.. as long as it survives to the end of our max warranty.. 3years.. then out pops the TC which is running far too hot but is pretty shiny plastic.. has no fan noise.. because they don't like noise for domestic situation.. even if it condemns it to early death.. without access to parts to repair the faulty supply, or any way to recover files if it does die.

     

    BTW I repair TC and you can make them last for many many years.. just follow the instructions.

    You either turn on the fan.. or better use external power supply.

    https://sites.google.com/site/lapastenague/a-deconstruction-of-routers-and-modem s/apple-time-capsule-repair

     

    But Apple built it to suit their philosophy of pretty sells.. not lifespan, not functionality.

  • 6. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

    That's helpful information, thanks.

  • 7. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

    I ordered a QNAP TS-112 NAS server along with a Seagate Barracuda 3TB drive for its drive bay from Amazon to replace my dead TC.  I wasn't using the router portion of the TC, so it won't be missed.

  • 8. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    HACKINT0SH Level 5 Level 5 (5,755 points)

    Failure after three years is just not acceptable for a data protection device, and it seems to be a common problem for Time Capsules.

    I agree. And often wonder why no one has yet written a book on this...  "Apple's Disaster" I feel it's a bit worse than the Lisa failure...

  • 9. Re: Time Limit Capsule
    capaho Level 4 Level 4 (3,650 points)

    That's why I can't bring myself to buy another Time Capsule.  Its antiquated router technology is mediocre at best, its user configurations are too basic in relation to other, more advanced network devices and its failure rate is too high to truly be considered a data protection device (hence a recently filed lawsuit on that issue).

     

    At least the QNAP comes with a two-year warranty out of the box and its hard drive is easy to replace if it crashes.  Its internal hard drive can also be backed up to an external USB drive or a remote cloud storage device, tricks the more expensive TC can't do.