8 Replies Latest reply: Jan 23, 2013 11:18 AM by lipwak
lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

Hi,

 

I have two external drives that have both Firewire and USB ports. My 1st generation 500 gb Time Capsule (maybe all of them?) only has USB ports so up til now, I have connected one or the other drive via USB. (I've tried to connect both to a powered USB hub but one drive has problems showing up. At this point I only use the one drive that shows up and connect it directly with no hub to the Time Capsue.)

 

My question is: Can I daisy chain the two drives via Firewire and then connect one of them (probably the one that has no problems connecting with USB) to the Time Capsule via USB?

 

Second, somewhat-related problem...

I don't know why one drive isn't connecting very well when directly connected to the Time Capsule. Both are Fantom drives. One is a 1TB, the one that has prblems connecting is a 250GB. I've tried connecting directly or through a powered hub. The 1B has no problems, the 250 gb won't show up most of the time and disconnects itself fairly quickly if it does connect. I've switched cables; that hasn't helped. The 1TB stays connected most of the time but sometimes it disconnects too. I suspect the Time Capsule just isn't able to deal with external drives so I don't puch it. It would be nice to be able to have both drives accessable through the TC though.

 

Thanks for any help.

 

Cheers,

 

John


MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 15" Quad core, 2.0/500/8
  • 1. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    Bob Timmons Level 9 Level 9 (78,705 points)
    My question is: Can I daisy chain the two drives via Firewire and then connect one of them (probably the one that has no problems connecting with USB) to the Time Capsule via USB?

     

    It might work depending on the capabiliites of your hard drives. Some hard drives may inactivate the FireWire port when the USB port is active, so you may need to use USB all the way through.

     

    While theoretically FireWire is the faster connection, in the real world the USB port on the Time Capsule will limit everything to about half the speed of a normal USB port on a computer.

     

    It would be nice to be able to have both drives accessable through the TC though.

    Did you try a powered USB hub? Some drives require more power and the USB port on the TC tends to be under powered. It would be a good idea to use a powered hub...even if you only have one hard drive connected.....to limit the stress on the TC power supply.

  • 2. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

    Cool. I was afraid I might blow something up...

     

    Speed isn't a big concern. I'll be happy as long as I xfer files between my MBP and either one of them. I'll do all my work on the MBP.

     

    Yes, I've tried powered hub and non-powered just-USB-cable connections when connecting the two or just one. So far, I'm getting good results with the 1TB drive solely connected with just a cable. I'll see if using a powered hub for only one keeps it connected longer.

     

    Thanks!

  • 3. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

    Thanks. I am still having problems with one drive, the 250gb one. The first time I daisy-chained the two drives together (and connected via USB) they both mounted. The second time only the 1TB drive did. So, I thought why not format the 250 gb one with 10.6, see if that helps. (It had been formated with 10.4.) It didn't. (Both were Mac OS Extended, Journaled) So, at least I know I can daisy-chain them via Firewire.

     

    I wonder if it makes any difference which drive I am connecting via USB with? So far, it doesn't seem to. Does it make any difference what order I turn each one on?

     

    You can't daisy-chain USB, right? I wonder why that 250 gb drive is being so flakey? It is fine when connected to my MBP directly via USB or Firewire/w/ a Thunderbolt adapter.

     

    Thanks for any help.

  • 4. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    edex67 Level 4 Level 4 (3,250 points)

    Incidentally, you can daisy-chain USB (although not with the Extreme). Keyboards with USB hubs in them work like this, you can attach these to USB hubs and then you have a chain. Some USB drives also have ports on them.

    No, it shouldn't make any difference what order you turn them on.

    Have you tried checking the drive for errors? As stupid as it might sound, Extremes seem especially sensitive to "slightly" corrupted drives.

  • 5. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

    Thanks. Earlier I tried attaching both to a powered hub but still had problems with that 250 gb drive (and both tended to disappear after a little while.) Maybe my hub is no good... It's a Gigaware (09A08?)

     

    So, I cannot daisy-chain USB in this case, since the Time Capsule is using Extreme, right? (it's a first-generation model.)

     

    I also verified the 250 gb drive when I had it connected to the MBP. It was ok though it did say something about checking something after if was all done which I thought was wierd. I didn't save that info...

  • 6. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    edex67 Level 4 Level 4 (3,250 points)

    Well, you *should* be able to daisy chain, but it doesn't work for me (multiple hubs on 1 Extreme/TC is a bit iffy). Extreme = TC as far as the USB port goes.

    The hub should be okay, but you could always check on your MBP.

  • 7. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

    Check how well the hub works using the MBP? Insert it inbetween and see if it causes trouble? An interesting idea.

  • 8. Re: Daisy chain two external drives via Firewire, then connect one via USB to the TC?
    lipwak Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)

    Doing some experimentation, connecting the drives directly to the MBP:

     

    - Neither of the two drives Firewire daisy-chained and going through the powered USB hub connected to the MBP mount. I was using old aliases on desktop.*They don't show up on network otherwise. (Each drive self-mounts with both Firewire and USB direct connections.)

     

    *Even after making new aliases, neither drive will mount using their new aliases when directly connected (not through hub) with USB or Firewire (and Thunderbolt adapter.) That's weird.

     

    - Both the 240 gb and the 1TB drives going through powered hub connected to MBP mount by themselves.

     

    - Two drives daisy-chained via Firewire and one drive connected to the MBP via Firewire (and Thunderbolt adapter) self-mount. No surprise there but that doesn't help me as I want to have the drives further away from the MBP and connected to the Time Capsule, which doesn't have a Firewire port anyway...

     

    - All of the USB and the Firewire cables work as does the Thunderbolt adapter. I tested them.

     

    I wonder.... I have a Firewire to what appears to be an Ethernet connector. I wonder if that would be any good. I'm afraid to try it though...