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Questions regarding data transfer utility to a new HDD

#1namelessnaggroPosted 11/19/2012 11:25:07 AM
I currently have a 250 GB HDD which in now close to full (PSN+ will do that to your HDD). I bought a 500 GB HDD to replace it, but even though I've attempted to search as much info as possible myself, I still have serious doubts as to how to do it without losing my files.

My plan is to put my current HDD on a friend's PS3, and from it do the transfer to my own PS3 and new HDD. So, my questions:

1- My friend's PS3 is slim; mine is fat. Would that be an issue?
2- What is going to happen when I first boot up his PS3 with my current HDD inside of it? I'm terrified it would format my disk! Can someone please confirm whether or not it would?
3- Regarding users: on my PS3 there are two main accounts. Mine, which I share on my friend's PS3, so I would imagine we could do the transfer without having to deactivate anything. But I've another account, that from yet another friend, to whom for years I gave my money so he made the purchases on his account so we shared as well. This was before they dropped the # of possible shared accounts down to two. So what is the recommendation? The user guide advises to deactive before the transfer, but common sense tells me that if I do that I wouldn't be able to re-activate it anyway.

Any help clarifying this questions is going to be greatly appreciated. I've over 95 games downloaded, which have taken literally years to accumulate. Where I live, download speeds are not to be praised... in fact, they seriously suck, so what is most important to me is to NOT lose any downloaded game in the process.

Thank you to every and anyone who can help.
#2EoinPosted 11/19/2012 11:28:38 AM
If you take your hard drive out of your PS3 and put it into your friend's PS3, it will not be able to do anything until the drive is formatted. You don't want this.

The solution is to get an external hard drive. Use the Backup Utility (not Data Transfer Utility), create a back up, swap hard drives, restore the backup, and you're done (note: it'll take ages, delete anything you can easily get back first).
#3namelessnaggro(Topic Creator)Posted 11/19/2012 12:01:28 PM
Thank you very much, you've addressed my main concern. Change of plan it is then.

When you say it would take "ages", how terrible is it really? We're talking 220 GB here. What would that take? About a week out and a week back in?

And seen as I'm relatively computer illiterate, could you please briefly guide me on what I'm looking for as far as the external HDD is concerned? I don't have one. And what would I need to connect it to the PS3?

Hey man, thank you again, you saved from something that would have pissed me off to no end.
#4EoinPosted 11/19/2012 2:04:11 PM
namelessnaggro posted...
When you say it would take "ages", how terrible is it really? We're talking 220 GB here. What would that take? About a week out and a week back in?

How long it takes will depend on how much stuff you end up backing up. Definitely not a week, but with 220GB a half a day either way is possible.

namelessnaggro posted...
And seen as I'm relatively computer illiterate, could you please briefly guide me on what I'm looking for as far as the external HDD is concerned? I don't have one. And what would I need to connect it to the PS3?

Essentially what you're looking for is an external USB hard drive. If you do a search for "external USB hard drive" on nearly any retail site that sells hard drives, most likely everything that comes back will work. On Amazon.com, for example, every result on the first page is a hard drive that will work with the PS3. The most you'll need to do with it is format it (PS3 only reads FAT32 drives - any hard drive can be formatted to FAT32 but some might not come formatted as FAT32 - however they can be formatted using a computer).

Every drive should come with a USB cable that can be used to connect it to the PS3.

If you're just buying for the PS3 backup process, then since it's a once-off, it might not be a bad idea to buy a very cheap drive (as long as you don't then rely on it heavily later). Prices on Amazon start at around US$40 but it's probably worth it to spend more than that. For example:

http://www.amazon.com/320GB-Silver-External-Portable-Drive/dp/B004CLWIG2/ref=sr_1_28?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1353362226&sr=1-28&keywords=external+usb+hard+drive
http://www.amazon.com/Iomega-Portable-External-34618-Midnight/dp/B0029D8DGY/ref=sr_1_31?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1353362226&sr=1-31&keywords=external+usb+hard+drive
http://www.amazon.com/BUFFALO-MiniStation-Stealth-Portable-Drive/dp/B0046RE21G/ref=sr_1_32?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1353362226&sr=1-32&keywords=external+usb+hard+drive

These are all highly reviewed and PS3-compatible.

It might seem annoying, by the way, to have to grab an external hard drive just to back up the PS3, but you may also want to consider using it as a backup for some PC-based files as well - most people have at least a few files somewhere that they don't want to lose and although an external hard drive isn't a perfect solution, it's a lot better than the most common alternative solution of "let's hope everything works out".
#5namelessnaggro(Topic Creator)Posted 11/19/2012 7:22:18 PM
Eoin, you've been a tremendous help, thank you kindly.