3 Replies Latest reply: Jan 30, 2013 12:25 PM by Kappy
janfrom Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi all,


I just installed my new SSD into my MBP. Thus, I am planning to use my HDD as my back up disk, and I plan to back up via time machine. I have a SATA to USB cable, so that external enclosure is out of the question.


My question: How do I use it as a backup? My SSD is an exact clone of the HDD, but soon, the HDD is planned to be a clone of my SSD. Do I just use time machine?


Then, backing up with time machine, say my SSD fails for something unlikely reason, and everything is backed up to my HDD, do I just plug in my HDD and then I can simply take off from there? Basically, I'm not that sure of how time machine works.


Thanks in advance guys!

MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), 2 GHz, 500 GB HDD, early 2011
  • 1. Re: How do I use HDD as external back up after installing SSD
    mende1 Level 10 Level 10 (89,570 points)

    To use the HDD as a backup drive, you will have to erase the disk. Time Machine needs the whole hard drive or partition to make backups.


    Alongside with Time Machine backups, I recommend you to make a second partition on the HDD and make clones with Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper. This will simplify the restore process if your SSD gets damaged or you have a problem, so you will only have to connect the HDD and boot from it to use the Mac

  • 2. Re: How do I use HDD as external back up after installing SSD
    OGELTHORPE Level 7 Level 7 (25,815 points)

    First get an enclosure for your HDD.  How did you clone your HDD/SSD?  If you used Carbon Copy Cloner then you should set it to update those changes that you make to your internal SSD.  It will be a bootable HDD and can be swapped any time.


    if you decide to Use Time Machine, it will not be a bootable drive but it will be the most efficient backup device.  The best of all possible worlds is to have both.



  • 3. Re: How do I use HDD as external back up after installing SSD
    Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (226,855 points)

    I can assure you that Time Machine does not create a cloned backup. For that you need other backup software like Carbon Copy Cloner. Disk Utility can also create a clone, but DU cannot be used as ordinary backup software. If you want a backup that can be used as an emergency boot drive, then don't use Time Machine for your backup.