one firewire harddrive into two PCs?


I’ve got a question from a friend that’s really stumping me. She’s got a firewire hard drive with two ports, and wants to know if she can plug it into two computers - one connection from each port, instead of just using one port to plug it into one computer, and the other for daisy-chaining more peripherals. She wants to be able to play her music from the harddrive on both machines at the same time.

I know that an OS can mediate simultaneous access to one hard drive by many users, but I’m not sure what would happen if you physically connected one hard drive to two separate computers. My best guess is that only the first one you plugged it into would recognize it, but I wanted to see if someone had a more definitive answer.

why not try it? it’s not like the harddrive is going to explode.

If the computers are networked then there is no reason to risk HD explosion, just have one connect direcvtly the other over the network

I agree that the network solution would work, but I’m just trying to find out what would happen if you did plug the HD into two computers instead of just plugging it into one and networking them, since in the networking case you still have an OS that controls write and read access to the drive, but there seems to be no such protection in the case of what my friend is trying to do.

Logic would say no.

You would have two different OSs and different software commands telling the poor HD to spin this way and that. You wouldnt get anywhere. It probably would explode.:wink:

Per wuckfistle I don’t think the firewire interface of a single drive is built to handle simultaneous access by two computers. I am not a firewire maven, but I’m guessing if the drive has 2 firewire access points that one would probably simply be a pass-through to (like the older SCSI setups) to allow the drive to chain the firewire connection to another drive or drvice, not to allow dual computer hookups.

I’d have to strongly advise against attaching two computers simultaneously. Like whuckfistle said, each computer expects to have exclusive access to the disk. Data corruption could easily result.

There may not be anything in the Firewire standard that says this is impossible at the hardware level, but software that specifically governs the simultaneous access of the device is necessary.