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Question: Using Airport as External HDD using usb cable

Hi,

I have an inactive Airport Time Capsule and I would like to use it as an external hard drive. I could set it up over the network, but I want it to be more secure. Could I use a male to male usb cable to connect the two, then be able to read and write files on the Airport's HDD? If not, then please tell me how to set it up through my network and not use it as a router. I set it up through my network, and my bandwidth was halved because the Airport was being used for another network besides my current one. Even when I made it so that it just connected to the current one, my family members still complained about slow internet. So please, tell me if it's possible to do the first part, or tell me how to do the second. Thank you


Airport model number is A1409 and has 2TB of storage

A1409 4th gen 2TB

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Could I use a male to male usb cable to connect the two, then be able to read and write files on the Airport's HDD?

Sorry, but no, since the USB port on the Time Capsule is there only to allow an additional hard drive to be connected to the Time Capsule for more storage, or to connect a compatible USB printer.


If not, then please tell me how to set it up through my network and not use it as a router

Connect an Ethernet cable from one of the LAN <--> ports on your main router to the WAN "O" port on the Time Capsule, set up the Time Capsule in Bridge Mode (which turns off the routing function of the Time Capsule) and then turn off the wireless function on the Time Capsule (to prevent the Time Capsule wireless from interfering with your network's wireless service.) Apple's setup "wizard" will do most of the work for you automatically. You will then use AirPort Utility to manually turn off the wireless on the Time Capsule as a final step.


As you might imagine, Apple will frown upon this type of setup, because they expect you to use the Time Capsule wireless.


Also, i did 2 factory resets and it would not let me "set up as hard drive" as some websites suggest

Not sure what websites you are referring to or what "it" might be, but the instructions above will do what you want.....to set up the Time Capsule as a network hard drive. If you are not familiar with Apple's set up "wizard", post back for more details. Here, I am assuming that your Mac is running a current or recent version of the operating system.


It would really help if you could provide the make and model number of your router, and what operating system the MacBook Air is running at the present time.


And I have a macbook air so I can't connect it via ethernet to my computer

The setup "wizard" assumes that you will be using WiFi to set up the Time Capsule, so an Ethernet connection is not required on your Mac.

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Dec 9, 2017 10:09 PM in response to BWallace2010 In response to BWallace2010

Could I use a male to male usb cable to connect the two, then be able to read and write files on the Airport's HDD?

Sorry, but no, since the USB port on the Time Capsule is there only to allow an additional hard drive to be connected to the Time Capsule for more storage, or to connect a compatible USB printer.


If not, then please tell me how to set it up through my network and not use it as a router

Connect an Ethernet cable from one of the LAN <--> ports on your main router to the WAN "O" port on the Time Capsule, set up the Time Capsule in Bridge Mode (which turns off the routing function of the Time Capsule) and then turn off the wireless function on the Time Capsule (to prevent the Time Capsule wireless from interfering with your network's wireless service.) Apple's setup "wizard" will do most of the work for you automatically. You will then use AirPort Utility to manually turn off the wireless on the Time Capsule as a final step.


As you might imagine, Apple will frown upon this type of setup, because they expect you to use the Time Capsule wireless.


Also, i did 2 factory resets and it would not let me "set up as hard drive" as some websites suggest

Not sure what websites you are referring to or what "it" might be, but the instructions above will do what you want.....to set up the Time Capsule as a network hard drive. If you are not familiar with Apple's set up "wizard", post back for more details. Here, I am assuming that your Mac is running a current or recent version of the operating system.


It would really help if you could provide the make and model number of your router, and what operating system the MacBook Air is running at the present time.


And I have a macbook air so I can't connect it via ethernet to my computer

The setup "wizard" assumes that you will be using WiFi to set up the Time Capsule, so an Ethernet connection is not required on your Mac.

Dec 9, 2017 10:09 PM

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Dec 10, 2017 8:28 AM in response to Bob Timmons In response to Bob Timmons

Thank you so much! I am not very familiar with the Apple setup wizard. And as you asked, I am running macOS High Sierra, version 10.13 and has a model number of A1465, year early 2014. My router is a gen 4, 2TB, Airport Time Capsule, model # A1409. It looks like this; https://cdn.a4c.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/520x520/9df78eab33525d08 d6e5fb8d27136e95/a/p/apple-time-capsule-… Thanks for the help, I'll try to get it running. I'll come back if i need more help 😀

Dec 10, 2017 8:28 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 8:31 AM in response to BWallace2010 In response to BWallace2010

If you temporarily power off the Time Capsule, there is still another device there that is providing a wireless signal.....according to the information in your post. That device is your router.....to which the Time Capsule will connect.


You might call this device your "modem", but if it is providing a wireless signal now, it is a modem/router or gateway device.


We need the make and model number of this device.


Once we have that information, we can provide step by step instructions to do what you want, if you need them. Please advise.

Dec 10, 2017 8:31 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 9:14 AM in response to Bob Timmons In response to Bob Timmons

Ok, i got it to work. I am now able to use it as an external HDD wirelessly, and have a password for it 😀 I tested my internet bandwidth before and after and they were exactly the same! Thank you so much for all your help. I have one question for you left though. Since I had to get a new router because this one was too old/slow (version 7.7.8 is newest update, older router only supports 7.6.8), would it hurt my new router if I were to connect the old one to it via ethernet cable? Could it possibly send harmful amounts of electricity, or false signals over to my new one? There weren't any problems with the router before, other than it was getting old. Nothing like malware, damage to the network/modem/computer, or any harm done in any way other than slower internet. In fact, I don't think we even needed a new router. Something must've happened and no-one could fix the older router (i wasn't into technology as much as i currently am back then, so i didn't know what to do) so i just bought a new one. But still, in the back of my head something tells me it MIGHT do something. Again, it's not defective, and can still serve internet if needed. Sorry for such a long post, please get back to me when you can.

Dec 10, 2017 9:14 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 9:33 AM in response to Bob Timmons In response to Bob Timmons

ok, so just incase you need it, my modem is an Arris TM1602A and it's connected to my router(newer airport time capsule) via ethernet cable in the WAN slot. Then my older airport time capsule (the one I'm using for HDD) Is connected via ethernet cable to my newer airport from one of the newer's LAN slots, into my older's WAN slot. Then my modem, newer airport, and older airport are connected to a surge protector, and the surge protector to the wall. My internet provider is Charter if you needed that as well.

Dec 10, 2017 9:33 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 10:05 AM in response to BWallace2010 In response to BWallace2010

Not sure what you would hope to gain by connecting the "old" router to the "new" router unless you plan to locate the old router at least a few rooms away from the new router and connect the two devices together using a permanent, wired Ethernet cable connection. This would allow the old router to provide additional wireless signal coverage in the area in which it is located.


But, to do this, your old router will need to have a feature that allows it to operate in Bridge Mode, so that the old router will be on the same network as the new router. If the old router does not have a Bridge Mode option, then the old router will be producing a different network, and devices on the old network will not be able to communicate with devices on the new network. You will also introduce an error known as Double NAT, which may or may not create some other issues, like slow browsing, slow connections, etc.

Dec 10, 2017 10:05 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 10:20 AM in response to Bob Timmons In response to Bob Timmons

No, like i said before, i got it to work. Im not using the older one for a router, i am using it for the sole purpose of using the hard drive on it for storage of any files. Like you said before, I had to connect it to the network for it to work. That's why it is connected to the router. I also turned off all network functions and turned off bridge mode. The only thing i want it to do is to act as an external hard drive for extra files i cannot store on my weak 100GB storage on my MacBook air. So i got it to work and i'm happy, but i would like to know the answer for the reply i posted at 9:14 AM.

Dec 10, 2017 10:20 AM

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Dec 10, 2017 10:45 AM in response to BWallace2010 In response to BWallace2010

It won't hurt to connect the old Time Capsule to the new Time Capsule using an Ethernet cable, but you would not want to have the old Time Capsule providing a wireless signal unless it was going to be located a few rooms away from the new Time Capsule.


Where will the old Time Capsule be located?

Dec 10, 2017 10:45 AM

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Question: Using Airport as External HDD using usb cable