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mattgibstein

Can you transfer files between two Macs using Thunderbolt ports and a Thunderbolt cable?

A few months ago, I bought a 15" MacBook Pro. As many of you know, it's equipped with a Thunderbolt port meaning I can utilize the technology to exchange data at an unbelievably fast rate... except that there's not a single consumer-level product on the market just yet.

The professional-grade RAIDs I've seen cost upwards of a thousand bucks, not something I'm willing to splurge on any time soon.

That being said, I'd love to take advantage of Intel and Apple's brainchild. Does anyone know if it's possible to transfer data between two Thunderbolt-equipped Macs using the Thunderbolt cable Apple sells?

I've tried searching on the web to no avail and would love to know either way.
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peterto

Looks like you can using target disc mode or target display mode with a thunderbolt to thunderbolt:

"Target Disk Mode is a feature that allows a Mac to act as an external hard drive. Until recently, you enabled Target Disk Mode by connecting two Macs together via FireWire. The new Thunderbolt port on the current iMac and MacBook Pro supports Target Disk Mode. "

www.macworld.com­/article­/160887­/2011­/07­/targetdisk...

Apple appears to be the only seller that sells a real thunderbolt cable and not just a minidisplay port one, but it'll cost you $50:

store.apple.com­/us­/product­/MC913ZM­/A­?mco­=MjMwMzY4N...
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jogdial

Yes - here's the official Apple Support page for Target Disk Mode:
docs.info.apple.com­/article.html­?path­=Thunderbolt­/...
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jabbar

Yes, and having witnessed it, the data rate is ultimately limited by the SATA connection and also the speed at which the hard drive is spinning (if its not an SSD). Thunderbolt is really only leveraged when connecting multiple devices and passing the data to the computer in various ways: i.e., the computer is hooked up to a display, which is connected to a RAID array. Basically, real world usage will not show 10Gbps data transfers, and will be marginally faster than FW800/USB 3 and about level with eSATA data rates.
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Strongium90

Jabbar dude youre totally wrong. You may not get the full Gbps but it is way faster than FireWire800. Firewire800 doesn't compare or USB3.0. I can transfer 23.29 Gigs of movie file files from my MacBookAir to my Mac Mini in 3 minutes 22 seconds. Just using Thunderbolt and one computer in Target disk mode. And the Air being a SSD only makes it marginally faster. So say if it was SATA to SATA 4:22. Seeing how one of my drives is a SATA then it should be running at the speed of the slowest drive. Which is SATA.
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