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What is Lyve Drive and how does it work?

With Lyve, you have every photo and video you’ve ever taken all in one place, accessible from any of your devices, beautifully presented and easy to enjoy.
Adding a Seagate external hard drive to your Lyve account means that you have all of those benefits, plus an affordable way to ensure that all of your original full-resolution photos & videos (from any of your devices) are collected in one place and copied to that Seagate hard drive.

Requirements and setup
The drive you use for Lyve Drive must be:
  • USB 2.0 or higher; Thunderbolt or Firewire drives are not supported.
  • Formatted as NTFS (Windows or Mac) or Mac OS Extended (Journaled) (Mac only, also referred to as HFS+). Note that Seagate drives ship from the factory in these formats.
  • A Seagate branded drive that has 250GB or more in available space.
This does require simple one-time setup to connect your Lyve account to a specific Seagate DAS external hard drive. To get started, just select Create Lyve Drive (Mac users: under the File menu; Windows users: in the system tray icon menu) in the download section of the Support page
For more details on getting things set up, check out some of our helpful articles.

Where do I buy a Lyve-compatible drive?
Check Seagate's website for the drive size that works best for you. There are a lot of great options, like the Backup Plus desktop drives, or the Backup Plus Slim models.

How do external drives work with Lyve?
When you add a Seagate DAS drive to your account, Lyve goes to work copying your original photos and videos to that drive. Once that copy process is complete, any of the Lyve apps associated with your account can access that drive. That means you have access to all of your memories in Lyve, in their original quality, without the restriction of having ALL of your mobile devices and computers online. Plus, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your originals are backed up and safe.
Once you have set up and Lyve-enabled your Seagate DAS with the Lyve App, a special new folder will be created on the DAS. This handy folder labelled Lyve importis a place where you can simply drag any photos you want into this folder and they will then be added to Lyve and viewable anywhere you have Lyve installed. It makes it easy for you bring in content from other hard drives, SD cards, etc.

What is the Lyve import folder on my Lyve Drive?
The Lyve import folder is a special folder which makes it easier to bring your photos & videos from other old DAS drives, SD cards, or other sources into Lyve and accessible on any screen. Simply drag-and-drop any photos and videos onto this automatically created folder (after you complete the Lyve drive setup) and they will be added to your Lyve collection.
This is really handy if you want to import a bunch of photos from a separate external drive. Just plug in your Lyve Drive to your computer, then also attach your storage drive with the photos you'd like to import (assuming your computer or laptop has more than 1 USB port). In the Finder (OS X) or Windows Explorer, just drag the photos from the storage drive to the Lyve import folder on your Lyve Drive. Launch Lyve, and your newly-imported photos will present, across all of your devices!

What is the Lyve Storage Library file on my drive?
Lyve consolidates and stores a copy your photos and videos from all of your devices (smartphones, tablets and other devices which also have the free Lyve App installed). The Lyve Storage Library (a folder on Windows or .pkg file on Mac) is where Lyve application stores your photos, videos and other important information.
Important note: Don't trash or move the Lyve Storage Library from it's default location on your Lyve Drive!

What’s a DAS?
DAS stands for “Direct Attached Storage” and simply means an external hard disk drive that you connect physically to your desktop or laptop computer via USB, like this one: Seagate Backup Plus.

Where are my photos & video stored?
After you've finished setting up your Lyve-enabled drive, Lyve brings all your photos together in one place on your DAS drive. The files are kept together in a special file named the Lyve Storage Library. You don't need to do anything to the Lyve Storage Library - you just access & enjoy your photos and videos as you would normally within the Lyve App.

How much space will this use on my drive?
This depends on how many photos & videos you have. Lyve continues to protect your photos and videos by creating copies of your originals to the Lyve-enabled DAS drive. To do this, Lyve will use as much of drive space as it needs - potentially filling the drive to capacity, depending on the size of your photo and video collection and/or the size of the DAS drive (that's why we recommend having 250GB space available!)

Can I use the same drive for both Time Machine and Lyve?
Drives that are used for Time Machine on Mac systems running OS 10.9.4 or later have the permissions changed to where other applications can't read or write to the drive.  For this reason, you cannot use the same drive for both Time Machine and Lyve.

Why doesn't my drive appear in Lyve?
Lyve is optimized to work with high-capacity DAS drives, so make sure that the external hard drive you connect is a supported Seagate DAS drive and that it is attached via a working USB cable to the computer running Lyve.
Mac users only: If you're having difficulty with a particular DAS drive, be sure that it is properly configured in a format that your Mac can “read & write” to. Check your drive manufacturer's website or documentation for details. Here are a few articles for more information: How to format your hard drive or How to setup a Backup Plus or GoFlex drive for use under MacOS. Also note that drives designated as Time Machine backups are not supported as Lyve Drives.

What is the difference between Seagate Dashboard & Lyve application?
The Lyve App is focused on making your life memories enjoyable anywhere, any time. The Seagate Dashboard app is a great tool to back-up your files. Both are pre-installed on certain Seagate drives.

How do I disable this feature?
To disable Lyve on a particular DAS drive, you’ll want to remove the drive from your Lyve account.

What do I do if my Lyve Drive runs out of space?
Here are two options for you:
  1. Add a Lyve Home to your account:
    If your Lyve library is less than 2TB in total size, adding a Lyve Home will create a full backup of all of your photos and videos, and any additional space will be left over to use as storage for any additional photos or videos you add to Lyve.
    2TB is a TON of space. Depending on the size of your Lyve library, you may never need to add more space. Plus, Lyve Home is an always-on, always-connected device, so you’ll have peace of mind knowing that it’s copying and protecting your full-resolution memories at all times.
    With the combo of Lyve Home and Lyve Drive, all of your previous memories will be backed up to Lyve Home, which is always available & always on - plus your Lyve Drive will then have a secondary (redundant) copy of some of your photos and videos. 
  2. Add a second Lyve Drive to your account:
    You can always a second Lyve Drive to your account as well. It’s best to add drives that are larger in size than the one that has run out of storage space. Just like with the first option above, adding another (larger) Lyve Drive will create a full backup of all of your photos and videos, and any extra space will be used as storage for any additional photos or videos you add to Lyve.
    If the second Lyve Drive is smaller than your your library size, only a partial copy of your photos and videos are created, so we wouldn’t recommend that. Get a bigger drive, you’ll be glad you did!