Can two computers share the same external hard drive?
- Asked by Kenneth S from Darlinghursst
LaCie Porsche Design P'9233 USB 3.0 Desktop Hard Drive
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3 Answers from the Community
Yes and no. You can NOT plug one hard drive directly into 2 computers. It will only be usable by whichever computer connected to it first, the other computer will be ignored. However, if you set up the first computer as a server you can access the same drive from multiple computers. Connect the hard drive to a Mac and go to your system preferences. Under "Sharing" in the Internet and Wireless row. In the first box (Shared Folders:" click the plus at the bottom left and select the hard drive you want to share. When you have selected it, you can click on the hard drive in the System Preferences window to change your privacy settings by setting Users who can access it. If you are setting it up at home I'd set Everyone to Read & Write. On the second Mac, open a Finder window and click "Go" then "Connect to Server" then, in the window that appears, "Browse". Click on the Mac the hard drive is connected to and you should be able to access it as if the hard drive were plugged into the second Mac.
It will work over Wi-Fi, but you really should have your Mac's connected by an Ethernet cable. It is MUCH faster and more reliable and the cables are very inexpensive.
- Answered by Judy P from San Marcos
Yes, and no...
Two computers can use the drive, but not at the same time. You'll have to "eject" the drive from the desktop of one computer, then physically unplug it before it can be used on the next computer.
Time machine can store backups for both computers on the drive, but can only do it one machine at a time.
- Answered by Glenn T from Lemont
Yes two Machines can share the drive, but the drive can only be connected to a single machine. To share the drive you must attach the drive to a single machine and share the drive. The second machine can access the drive across the network (Look for and attach shared drive).
- Answered by Bernard M D