This article is for informational purposes only and no longer being updated by Seagate.

GoFlex Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is special about FreeAgent® GoFlex™?
A:  The FreeAgent® GoFlex™ storage family delivers an easy-to-use, plug-and-play external hard drive experience while offering the flexibility and upgradability that many people are now demanding due to the evolving nature of how mobile and active people’s lives are becoming.  With different options of external drives, cables, desktop adapters, and edge devices, the entire family of GoFlex drives can be customized to fit your lifestyle needs - whether that is with your PC, on your TV, over your network, or on-the-go. 

GoFlex interface cables are about providing the speed, performance and connectivity that consumers are demanding today. With the explosive growth of video-on-demand, multimedia streaming and growing personal digital libraries, consumers are now moving multi-GB-sized files at a time. These trends are driving demand for high-capacity, high performance storage.  USB 2.0 is still adequate for most people, but as more and more video content is stored and moved around, USB 3.0 will become more attractive for consumers.  As the world’s most upgradable external drive, the GoFlex ultra-portable drive can be paired with any GoFlex upgrade cable to enhance the transfer speeds or can be used with a GoFlex device to gain access to your digital life from your TV or over your network.
In addition to offering the option of changing the speed and performance to move and read files more quickly, each GoFlex drive is part of the GoFlex Storage System, which allows it to work with any other product within a broader ecosystem. Products within the GoFlex Storage System include

  • GoFlex™ ultra-portable drive (14.5mm and 23mm versions)
  • GoFlex™ Desk
  • GoFlex™ Pro
  • GoFlex™ Slim
  • GoFlex™ Turbo
  • GoFlex™ (drive-only version)
  • GoFlex™ Cable - USB 2.0
  • GoFlex™ Upgrade cable - USB 3.0
  • GoFlex™ Upgrade Kit - USB 3.0 kit
  • GoFlex™ Upgrade cable - FireWire® 800
  • GoFlex™ Upgrade cable - Auto Backup
  • GoFlex™ Intelligent dock
  • GoFlex™ Thunderbolt adapter
  • GoFlex™ TV HD media player
  • GoFlex™ Net media sharing device
  • GoFlex™ Satellite
  • GoFlex™ for Mac

Q: Do GoFlex,GoFlex Pro, and GoFlex Slim work with existing Seagate products such as FreeAgent Theater+ and DockStar?
A: Yes. While the GoFlex, GoFlex Pro and GoFlex Slim drives won’t sit squarely in the existing FreeAgent Theater+ or DockStar docking stations, these GoFlex products ship with a standard USB 2.0 cable, which will allow them to connect via a USB port on the existing FreeAgent Theater+ and DockStar products.

Q: What is different between DockStar and GoFlex Net; as well as Theater+ and GoFlex TV?
A: The key differentiators between the FreeAgent Family and the GoFlex Family is that within the GoFlex ecosystem of products you will experience easy backup of all your data as you would expect in an external hard drive, but you will also get the ability to upgrade your drive’s interface to unlock the full transfer speeds of your portable drive, and you will also get seamless flexibility of accessing your content beyond the PC. 
With the GoFlex Net, not only do you have the ability to easily store, access and share your digital content from anywhere through the network, but now you have two integrated GoFlex ultra-portable drive slots and one additional USB 2.0 port, so you can pair a GoFlex ultra-portable drive or any other USB 2.0 storage device with the GoFlex Net to hold your content.  The GoFlex Net also includes a removable drive slot, which allows you to use both slim and slightly thicker drives in the docks.
The FreeAgent GoFlex TV HD media player is similar in many ways to the FreeAgent Theater+ HD media player, but using GoFlex TV HD media player you will be able to easily insert your GoFlex ultra-portable drive through the incorporated drive slot. You can also access content from any other USB 2.0 storage device, any network-attached storage device or server, and from a selection of popular web-based content providers.  It is also possible to use your FreeAgent Go drive with the GoFlex TV HD media player using the external USB port, the same way that it is possible to use your GoFlex ultra-portable drive or GoFlex Pro ultra-portable drive with the FreeAgent Theater+ HD media player.

Q: How is the GoFlex series of products different from other available external hard drive solutions?
A: The GoFlex family of drives is different from other standard hard drives available today in that it provides more than just a way to store, backup and protect your digital content.  FreeAgent GoFlex drives deliver:

  • Flexibility: You can use one drive in many different ways within the GoFlex family, including on your PC, at your TV, over your network, or on-the-go.
  • Interoperability: Use the same drive on both a PC and Mac interchangeably.
  • Upgradable: Plug-and-play functionality for drives paired with cables or adapters.  Each GoFlex drive can be used with any interface you would like. Use the USB 2.0 cable today, and upgrade to the USB 3.0 cable tomorrow.
  • Peace of mind: Each drive comes preloaded for fast and easy installation. The Seagate Dashboard software management tool enables easy backups and highlights drive statistics.

Q: Is USB 3.0 backward compatible with USB 2.0?
A:  Yes, USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 2.0. 

Q: Can I interchange cables and adapters between GoFlex, GoFlex Pro, GoFlex Slim and GoFlex Desk?
A: It is possible to interchange all cables and adapters between the portable solutions - GoFlex, GoFlex Pro, and GoFlex Slim - however, you cannot use a portable solution cable with the GoFlex Desk because the power requirements of the GoFlex Desk exceed what can be supplied through a USB, eSATA or FireWire port. Therefore, it is necessary to use GoFlex Desk power adapters that are designed to draw power from a standard AC power outlet.

Q: Can I plug any bare drive into Seagate’s GoFlex cables? Will they function properly?
A: While the GoFlex cables are capable of plugging directly into our Seagate Barracuda and Momentus drives and used with a laptop or desktop, we do not recommend or support their use with an exposed drive. The added benefit of the GoFlex solutions is to have a durable enclosure that allows for portability, use with other products in the ecosystem and delivers all the added physical protection you would want to keep your most precious data safe and secure. 

Q: What does upgradable mean? Can I increase the capacity of my drive?
While it is not possible to increase the capacity of your GoFlex drive, the unique and seamless GoFlex cable system transforms the GoFlex, GoFlex Pro, and GoFlex Slim ultra-portable drives into truly upgradable solutions in that you can access the content on your drive with any interface you would like, all by simply selecting the cable that matches your interface of choice.  Each drive kit (excluding the drive-only box) comes standard with a USB 2.0 cable for out-of-the-box USB 2.0 performance. However, by simply changing the cable, you can upgrade the speed and performance of your interface to have faster FireWire 800, eSATA, or USB 3.0 transfer rates than that of the standard USB 2.0 drive.

Q: What is the difference between GoFlex, GoFlex Pro, and GoFlex Slim?
The GoFlex ultra-portable drive delivers an easy, plug-and-play experience for backing up, encrypting, and accessing your content, and is the first building block of flexibility in a broader ecosystem to allow upgradability. The GoFlex ultra-portable drives also comes in four different color options - silver, black, red and blue - so you can have your drive better reflect your personal style.
The GoFlex Pro and GoFlex Slim drives deliver premium-level backup and encryption software, an industrial portable design, sync software and comes with an intelligent desktop dock with a capacity gauge for use when you’re at home or in the office. The GoFlex Pro and GoFlex Slim drives also offer an extended warranty versus the standard GoFlex drive, synchronization software and a premium finish.
The GoFlex, GoFlex Pro, and GoFlex Slim drives are part of the broader GoFlex Storage System ecosystem which allows interoperability between each drive and the broader product ecosystem.

Q: Why is there no power button on GoFlex Desk?
A: The GoFlex Desk drives use a power management system to put the drive to sleep when it is not being written to or read from, so there is no need for an on/off button on the drive. For an external drive with Mac OS X, the option to put the drive asleep when not in use is managed through the system preferences of the computer.

Q: Can I delete the included software?
A: Yes, the software can be deleted from the drive. However, if the software is not installed, the capacity gauge on the GoFlex Pro, GoFlex Slim and GoFlex Intelligent Dock will not function.

Q: Do any of the software packages perform a full system backup like Replica, i.e. applications and OS?
A:  The Replica full system backup capabilities have now been put into the GoFlex Auto-backup cable.  A GoFlex ultra-portable drive coupled with the optional auto-backup cable will provide all the same benefits of our Replica complete PC backup system.

Q: Can I disable the Dashboard from popping up each time I plug my drive in?
A:  Yes, simply uncheck the box next to "Display Seagate Dashboard when drive is attached" on the main screen of the Dashboard to prevent it from opening when the drive is attached.  

MacOS-specific questions:

Q: Does the capacity gauge on GoFlex Pro, GoFlex Slim, and GoFlex Desk work on a Mac?
A: No. The last compatible version of macOS this feature worked with was macOS 10.7 (Mountain Lion).

Q: What level of support is there for Mac with GoFlex products?  Will GoFlex work with TimeMachine?
A: There are two scenarios in which GoFlex drives are supported for use with a Mac. When you connect a GoFlex drive to a Mac, you will be presented with a utility to configure the drive for use. First, if you want to use your GoFlex 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 or the included Memeo Premium backup software for Mac. If you would like to be able to "shuttle" data back and forth between a Mac and a PC, a special driver 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, nor will Memeo Premium software for Mac. However, if you want your GoFlex solution to also work with TimeMachine, the drive will need to be reformatted to HFS+ journaled.

Q: When is it appropriate to reformat my drive versus using the included cross-platform driver?
A: If a user wishes to use their GoFlex ultra-portable drive, GoFlex Pro or GoFlex Slim drives with a Mac only and would like for it to work with TimeMachine, the drive should be re-formatted to be an HFS+ Journaled drive.  This is the only format recognized and supported by TimeMachine.

Q: What are the model numbers of GoFlex accessories?
A: This table provides the various GoFlex accessory model numbers.

Family Model Number
GoFlex Upgrade Cable - USB 2.0 STAE100
GoFlex Upgrade Cable Kit - USB 3.0 STAE101
GoFlex Upgrade Cable - FireWire 800 STAE102
GoFlex Upgrade Cable - USB 3.0 STAE104
GoFlex Desk Desktop Adapter - FireWire 800/USB 2.0 STAE105
GoFlex Desk Desktop Adapter - USB 3.0 STAE106
GoFlex Desk Desktop Adapter Kit - USB 3.0 STAE107
GoFlex™ Thunderbolt adapter STAE121

Q: What is this new feature that allows the GoFlex to work in both MacOS and Windows without reformatting the drive?

A: The drive comes bundled with software that allows the drive to remain formatted NTFS, but will allow a computer running MacOS to write to the NTFS partition on the GoFlex drive.  Without the software, a drive with an NTFS partition would be read-only under MacOS.

Q: Can the USB 3.0 adapter be used with a Mac computer?

A: Yes, it will work in USB 2.0 mode. Mac computers do not currently offer USB 3.0 support. However, the USB 3.0 connector will work with a USB 2.0 port. 
Note: The optional USB 3.0 PCI Express or PC Express cards will not work with MacOS since a driver is not available.

Q: Can the FreeAgent GoFlex Net be used with MacOS?

A: Yes, the GoFlex Net will work with 10.5 (Leopard) and 10.6 (Snow Leopard). There was an issue with MacOS 10.6.3 when using the WFS (Windows File Sharing) feature, but an update to MacOS 10.6.4 resolves that issue.

Q: How is the GoFlex Satellite different?
A: Please see the GoFlex Satellite support page for a full description of the groundbreaking GoFlex Satellite.

Q: What is the GoFlex for Mac family?
A: Please see Document ID: 217951 for a full description of this drive family.