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Can the time capsule hard drive be changed?

633 Views 11 Replies Latest reply: Jul 3, 2012 4:24 PM by Kennethfromcolchester RSS
sparksmac Calculating status...
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Oct 1, 2011 2:44 PM

Can the hard drive in a time capsule be swapped out for a larger one?

MacBook Pro i7, iMac 3.06 24", iPhone 4 32GB and iPad 64GB 3G, Mac OS X (10.6.7), Also 15" PowerBook G4, 12" G3 iBook, iPhone 3G 16GB, and 500GB T
  • d6d24r94 Level 3 Level 3 (610 points)
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    Oct 1, 2011 2:46 PM (in response to sparksmac)

    I would imagine so. Time Machine works this way, you just have to change it in System Preferences. I don't use Time Capsule but I would think it would work the same way.

  • LaPastenague Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
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    Oct 1, 2011 8:59 PM (in response to sparksmac)

    Sure can.. but be careful as going larger than model was supplied with can be difficult.. ie people have tried to run 3TB drives in previous series TC and had major issues.. whereas the 2TB upgrade is ok in most models.

     

    Don't forget you can also plug in a USB drive.. although internal is better.

     

    There is no provision to do this... the TC is a sealed device.. but plenty of sites give info just google .. time capsule hard drive upgrade

     

    If you do it with care, particularly heating the rubber mat with a hair dryer or heat gun until very hot.. I have to wear a pair of leather gardening gloves to not burn my fingers.. it will peel off with no problems.. people who try cold or not hot enough inevitably tear it,, and leave both the TC base and the mat a mess. There are 10 2mm tiny philips head screw in the base. The hard drive will then lift out and you can swap the locator pins and heat sensor from the old drive to the new one. IMHO don't put the Rubber Foot back.. just use some feet, like rubber stoppers. Door wedges etc. Cooling is much improved just removing the mat and giving it some space underneath.

  • SimonTemplar Calculating status...
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    Jun 16, 2012 9:19 AM (in response to LaPastenague)

    What size and type hard drive does the TC use?  A,lso, does it need any special setup prior to installation in the TC?

     

     

    Thanks,

     

     

    sT

  • crampy Level 4 Level 4 (1,135 points)
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    Jun 16, 2012 9:36 AM (in response to SimonTemplar)

    I am yet to set up my time capsule- I bought it yesterday- but I had the choice of buying a 2 gigabyte or a three gigabyte. As to TYPE of drive? what like ATA or solid state? I do not know that one.

  • LaPastenague Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
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    Jun 16, 2012 3:57 PM (in response to SimonTemplar)

    SimonTemplar wrote:

     

    What size and type hard drive does the TC use?  A,lso, does it need any special setup prior to installation in the TC?

     

     

    The TC uses a standard 3.5" SATA drive..

     

    It is usually a green drive.. WD often being used.. standard WD green drive.. but they use SAMSUNG and have used Hitachi, although I haven't seen them lately. Mostly it is WD.

     

    See the pics.. http://www.anandtech.com/show/4577/airport-extreme-5th-gen-and-time-capsule-4th- gen-review-faster-wifi-/4

     

    Size is depending on what you buy.. now they are 2TB for reasonable price and 3TB for absolute rip off price.. there is no improvement to the 3TB model. So don't buy it.. unless you have excess money.

     

    The use of solid state drive .. SSD in the TC would be pointless.. it is slow.. even a 7200rpm drive gains very little.. read the review where they tested a ssd in the TC.

     

    It is designed for back of laptops where wireless speeds are the rate determining step.. a slow green drive is more than fast enough and produces less heat, although this is marginal.

     

    When you upgrade the drive.. you can either just put it in the TC, then erase the drive from the airport utility. It will be formatted HFS+ with one large space and a few small partitions for local use. So no drive preparation is necessary.

     

    But you can plug the HDD into the computer using a usb to sata cable.. or whatever other access you have, and partition the drive beforehand.. this is the only way to partition a TC.

    Use HFS+ with GUID type drive. The partitioned drive will work fine in the TC.. the small extra partitions needed by the TC will be added when you first boot it.

  • SimonTemplar Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jun 16, 2012 6:46 PM (in response to sparksmac)

    >

    >The TC uses a standard 3.5" SATA drive..

    >

     

    That's what I was looking for.

     

    I read elsewhere (YouTube and etc) several comments about the new drive needing to be 'set up' prior to installation in the TC. Is there something special that needs to be done?  I mean, it DOES use the standard Mac formatting doesn't it?

     

     

    sT

  • LaPastenague Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
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    Jun 16, 2012 7:52 PM (in response to SimonTemplar)

     

    I read elsewhere (YouTube and etc) several comments about the new drive needing to be 'set up' prior to installation in the TC. Is there something special that needs to be done?  I mean, it DOES use the standard Mac formatting doesn't it?

     

     

    sT

    No pre-setup is required.. when you put the new drive in the TC.. go to the airport utility.. (v5.6 at least have erase even if 6.0 doesn't).. erase the drive.. when you erase a drive you are redoing the drive setup, and formatting it.

    It takes just a minute or two.

     

    BUT if you want a special setup with partitions for example.. the best time to do it is before you install and then you need to preconfigure it.. but anybody who says it is necessary has not tried just erase.

  • HACKINT0SH Level 5 Level 5 (5,750 points)
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    Jun 16, 2012 11:23 PM (in response to LaPastenague)

    Cooling is much improved just removing the mat and giving it some space underneath.

    You know Pastenague... if it were not for voiding my warranty... you make me want to do this right now BEFORE mine breaks down

  • LaPastenague Level 7 Level 7 (32,820 points)
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    Jun 17, 2012 12:51 AM (in response to HACKINT0SH)

    Let me tell you a secret.. shhh!!

     

    As per the first post.. get the mat off.

     

    After heating, peel from the side opposite to the label.. peel slowly and heat any area that catches but expect to leave glue behind on the rubber hdd and fan mounts. Peel the area under the label in one pull so the label comes up along its whole length..ie the label will bend on its short side..  that prevents it creasing.. !! The label is laminated paper and will not have the elasticity of the rubber so stretch it as little as possible.. The rubber mat is extremely tough if you heat it.. some synthetic conductive rubber mix.. (conductive rubber being a total misuse of the language cf heat conduction of say aluminium). Use your gloves to roll up any left behind glue on the aluminium which should now be bright and shiny clean.

     

    Open the TC and do what you like.. put some rubber feet on it. Chock it and block it up to allow plenty of air underneath. You will see the mat half blocks the only vents the TC has to breath.. just to help the temperature go up.

     

    If the day of judgement comes early.. carefully replace the stored rubber mat after removing the feet. A small amount of glue around the edges to keep it on.

    Thus keeping all parties happy!!

  • Kennethfromcolchester Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jul 3, 2012 4:23 PM (in response to HACKINT0SH)

    yeah i agree i did this with my first gen and its cooler now

  • Kennethfromcolchester Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jul 3, 2012 4:24 PM (in response to sparksmac)

    i replaced my hard drive in my gen 1 with seagate green 2tb, must say its cooler and quiter, the 5400 speed does not seem to have slowed it down at all, very happy. it was a case of plug and play - instrant recogniton.

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