Backup Plus Desktop FAQ

Frequently asked questions for Backup Plus Desktop drives, including information on usage with Mac OS and Dashboard.

Q: What is different between Seagate Backup Plus Desktop and Seagate Backup Plus Slim?
A: Seagate Backup Plus Desktop has larger capacity points available, but requires a wall outlet for power and is a larger form factor.

Q: What is different between Seagate Backup Plus Desktop v1 and Seagate Backup Plus Desktop v2?
A: Seagate Backup Plus Desktop v2 started selling in 2014 and is USB 3.0 only. It no longer has interchangeable interface adapters.  

Q: What is Seagate Backup Plus, and how is it different from competitive products?
A: Seagate Backup Plus is a hard drive from Seagate that simplifies backup for consumers who want to protect their entire digital life locally, in the cloud or from social networks.

Using the Seagate Dashboard—pre-loaded on every Backup Plus drive—users can:
  • Use the Backup function to set up a one-click backup plan or customize a scheduled local backup.
  • Use the Save feature to back up user-generated content from your favorite social networks automatically.
  • Use the Share feature to upload multiple files to social networks from your computer.
Carrying on from the previous generations, Backup Plus also supports cross-platform usage between a Mac and a PC without reformatting (requires installation of an optional, pre-loaded driver)


Q: Once I back up my data, do I need to restore it to access it or can I access the files directly on my Backup Plus drive?
A: The Seagate Dashboard does not use a proprietary format to back up your data; you are not required to use the Dashboard to access your backed up data. You can browse your backed up data by accessing your Backup Plus drive in Windows Explorer.

Q: If I switch from continuous backup to a scheduled backup, will my backup data still be available...and vice versa?
A: Yes, the change in the frequency does not affect the file structure.

Q: Does the Dashboard back up open files, whether continuous or scheduled?
A: Yes, the Dashboard attempts to backs up files that are open for continuous and scheduled backup plans.
Q: How do I check for updates?
A: You can check for updates at any time by clicking the Settings icon (the gear in the upper right corner) of the Dashboard and then clicking the Updates tab.

Q: Does the Dashboard back up my applications and settings on my computer?
A: No, the Dashboard will not back up applications and settings. It only backs up data files and folders from your Mac or PC.

Q: Does the Dashboard keep multiple versions of my files?
A: Yes, each time you make a change to the data targeted in a backup job, the Dashboard creates a new versioned file of those changes.

Social Media Save

Q: If I check the ‘Auto Save’ feature in the Save feature, how often is my content backed up from my account?
A: Content is saved from your social media account once per hour when the Auto Save feature is enabled.

Q: What resolution of photos and videos get saved from Facebook and Flickr® in the Dashboard?
A: When uploading files to social media sites such as Facebook, the resolution of photos and videos are frequently reduced to optimize the file for use on the web. This means that the files saved by the Dashboard will be in the reduced web resolution supported by the social media site that you are using.

When uploading photos to Facebook, be sure to select the high-resolution option to maximize the quality of your photos.

Q: Can "Save" back up my wall messages and inbox on Facebook?
A: The Dashboard is designed to only save photo and video content from your social media account.

Q: Does the Save feature save the captions I used on my pictures?
A: If your photo included a caption, the Seagate Dashboard will save your photo with your caption as a part of the file name.

Q: Where are my photos and videos saved to when I enable the Save feature? Can I change the default location?
A: Your photos and videos are saved by default to your computer in a folder called My Online Documents. To browse this folder, click on the magnifying glass icon on Save feature tab. A Finder or Windows Explorer window will automatically open, showing you the content that you have saved. Photos and videos will be stored first by the social media site, then be placed in sub-folders that are created based on the albums in your account.

To change the default location, click on the default folder link that is next to the magnifying glass. You will then be asked to select a new destination, or create a new folder.

Social Media Share

Q: Can I upload files by selecting an entire folder for sharing, or do I have to select files one by one?
A: Yes, you can select an entire folder to upload to social media sites. However, be aware that some sites have restrictions on uploads, so the upload may not complete if you exceed any size or file number limits imposed by the service that you are using.

Q: Is there a limit in the number of uploads supported by my YouTube account?
A: Currently YouTube restricts users to two video uploads per month. Please be sure to check the YouTube video upload policy for your account as this is subject to change and may vary by account type.


Q: Can I use Backup Plus without using the Dashboard software?
A: Yes, you can use Backup Plus without installing the Dashboard software like any other external hard drive, whether it’s for capacity expansion or for backup using other software or drag-and-drop.

Q: Is the Backup Plus drive compatible with Windows 8?
A: Yes, however you may need to check for software updates within the Seagate Dashboard settings or allow an update to download during install.

Q: What is the cross-platform Paragon driver? Does it work with Apple Time Machine®?
A: Each Backup Plus product supports two scenarios for use with a Mac. When you connect a Backup Plus drive to a Mac, you will be presented with a utility to configure the drive for use.

There are two scenarios in which Backup Plus drives are supported for use with a Mac.
  1. If you want to use your Backup Plus drive solely with a Mac, the utility will reformat the drive into the HFS+ format, which allows you to use the drive with Time Machine software included in the Mac OS.
  2. If you would like to be able to “shuttle data” back and forth between a Mac and a PC, a special driver (included with the Backup Plus drive) needs to be installed onto the Mac that allows it to access a Windows-formatted drive (i.e. NTFS). Time Machine will not work in this case.

Q: When is it appropriate to reformat my drive versus using the included cross-platform Paragon driver?
A: If a user wishes to use their Backup Plus with a Mac only and would like for it to work with Time Machine software, the drive should be reformatted to be an HFS+ “Journaled” drive. This is the only format recognized and supported by Apple Time Machine software.

Q: If I installed Paragon from my Backup Plus drive, will it work with other, non-Seagate drives?
A: The included Paragon driver will only work with Seagate-branded hard drives.   

Q: Is USB 3.0 backward compatible to USB 2.0?
A: Yes, USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 2.0. This means that if you plug your Backup Plus drive into a USB 2.0 port, it will work (at USB 2.0 speeds).

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