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What USB 3.0 HDDs work properly with an Ivy Bridge Mini?

725 Views 22 Replies Latest reply: Nov 21, 2012 7:16 PM by den.thed RSS
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Stephen Throop Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Nov 18, 2012 10:23 PM

I want to get an external hard disk.  I've read about lots of problems with various  USB 3.0 drives.

Mac mini, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8), 2.5 gHz Intel i5
  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    You should be fine using any 2.0 or 3.0 USB Drive, as long as you stay away from Cheap-O Bargain Basement Drives.


    USB 2.0 v 3.0 - Google Search

    iMac, Mac Mini, iPad, iPods, Mac OS X (10.6.8), (10.8.2), Safari, iTunes, iPhoto
  • syhr Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)

    I'm using this enclosure  with a new Toshiba Deskstar 500 GB 7200RPM Deskstar that I bought several years ago.  I'm using a USB 3 connection and the disk functions as my startup disk.  My Mini is an i7 2.6 Ghz with 16 GB ram. 


    I have had no problems.  Believe Toshiba disks are now HGST disks.  You can purchase the enclosure bare and add your own drive or populated with a disk or SSD drive...


    Good luck.



  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    Most of those problems seem to be with using either a Windows HTFS or Apple's old APM Formatted Drive in Mountain Lion and not so much with Hardware.


    Whichever External Hard Drive you decide on, just be sure that it say's Mac OS X compatible on the box and use Disk Utility to Erase and Format it before starting your Time Machine backups or moving files to it.

  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    Please do not read to much into any one thread or over concern yourself with a few isolated problems! If you do, then you will never develop a good backup strategy of your own.


    Personally I have no less than 10 different External Drives that backup 3 different Mac's (2 old Maxtor Desktop FireWire Drives, 1 old Maxtor Desktop USB Drive, 2 home made Desktop USB Drives, 2 WD Passport Portable Drives, 2 Seagate FreeAgent Portable Drives, 1 home made Portable Drive and 3 other bare drive that I use with a USB Drive Adapter) and even the older ones that I used with Tiger, Leopard and Snow Leopard, work just fine with Mountain Lion. Adding that the Desktop Drives are Mac Formatted and used for Bootable Clones, Time Machine and Music, while most of the Portable Drives are Formatted MS-DOS FAT-32 for sharing music and photos cross-platform and all work as expected.


    On that note: If you are really concerned about backup, get more than one External Hard Drive and do a different type of Backup on each one.


    see > My backup plan: Dan Frakes | Macworld

  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    Stephen Throop wrote:


    I bought a Firewire enclosure and disk so I could boot from my clone.  Doing business with OWC proved to be very bad backup strategy.  The enclosure failed to power up.  They said I would void my warranty if I removed the disk to safeguard my backup.  They said they'd checked it out, but it still wouldn't power up.  They said they'd do the same thing if I sent it back again.


    So check out Fry's, on Sunday I noticed that they had more than a half dozen brands of USB 3.0 Desktop and Portable Enclosures.


    Stephen Throop wrote:


    I got another Firewire enclosure that still works fine, but I had to look before I leaped.  Lots of Mac owners had Firewire drives, but not all were bootable.  It took digging to find out if the one I intended to buy had the right chip set.


    That was true for PPC Mac's, however Intel iMac's can boot from FireWire and most all USB Drives if they are Partitioned and Formatted correctly.


    Stephen Throop wrote:


    Sometimes problems posted in forums are isolated, but in these threads, others say, "me too," and nobody says his works fine.  Are any of your disks running on USB 3.0 with Ivy Bridge and Mountain Lion?  I have two USB mice which must often be reconnected to communicate with my 2012 Mini.  It's a nuisance for mice and could be disastrous for a backup disk.


    You will always have "me too's" here... The forums are like an ER rooms, some folks get whisked straight to surgery while the hypochondriacs congregate and complain about there problems.


    I'm not sure what kind of connection problems you are having with mice or what brand they are, but perhaps you should focus on that problem first.

  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    Yes, except that Intel iMac's have SMC's and not PMU or SMU's.


    see > Intel-based Macs: Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC)

  • den.thed Level 7 Level 7 (23,325 points)

    Those are the instructions for a PowerPC Mac, if you look down towards the bottom you will see the same link to the Intel one that I gave you above.

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