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Old Dec 15, 2008, 07:01 AM   #1
sOwL
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Time machine vs Superduper

ok so, lets say that my hard disk just failed, but ive got a backup from time machine in my external drive. So, i buy a new internal hdd and place it. What shuld i do next? Boot from the leopard dvd, install leopard, then restore the time machine backup? Will this make my stuff to be exactly as they were or not? Is superduper the only choice to achieve that?
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 07:56 AM   #2
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SuperDuper does do what you say, in the event your HD dies, yes. Time Machine will restore all your user files as well as some of your applications. It doesn't restore everything, though - you may find some applications missing and/or require reinstallation to work properly, most notably the developer tools. For some odd reason Time Machine does NOT back up your Xcode installation.
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:16 AM   #3
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ok so, for a full emergency backup i stick with superduper. I understand what u said about time machine, just like when i upgraded from tiger to leopard. Anyway, i still like the idea of time machine, but how can i make it to not use all that space for archiving? I mean, i dont need 1 month old files to be there, actually i would like to use time machine for archiving lets say a week, and only my personal stuff since i will have a full backup with SD!. Can i do that? I mean, can i make it delete files after a week or so? Also, make it just archive my home folder? (pfff i might have to exclude every single folder exept my home folder)
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:18 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by sOwL View Post
ok so, for a full emergency backup i stick with superduper. I understand what u said about time machine, just like when i upgraded from tiger to leopard. Anyway, i still like the idea of time machine, but how can i make it to not use all that space for archiving? I mean, i dont need 1 month old files to be there, actually i would like to use time machine for archiving lets say a week, and only my personal stuff since i will have a full backup with SD!. Can i do that? I mean, can i make it delete files after a week or so? Also, make it just archive my home folder? (pfff i might have to exclude every single folder exept my home folder)
Unfortunately, you can't.

What I recommend for your situation is to use two drives, one for Time Machine backups and one for SuperDuper clones. This will give you peace of mind, since if your hard drive dies, you can boot from the clone, then restore any changes that weren't cloned from your Time Machine backup.
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:26 AM   #5
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Unfortunately, you can't.

What I recommend for your situation is to use two drives, one for Time Machine backups and one for SuperDuper clones. This will give you peace of mind, since if your hard drive dies, you can boot from the clone, then restore any changes that weren't cloned from your Time Machine backup.
the problem is, that time machine needs alot of space, and my external is 1tb, same as my internal. At the moment, my files are 400gb, so i could make 2 partitions to my external and use for sd and tm, but in the future it will be hard. My point is: lets say i got 800gb of files, and copied a clone at my external drive on an 800gb partition. Could the 200gb partition be enough for my personal files (using tm)? will it automatically delete old files if theres not enough space? If it does, then its fine because i will always be able to have some certain space for tm, only for recent archives
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:32 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by sOwL View Post
the problem is, that time machine needs alot of space, and my external is 1tb, same as my internal. At the moment, my files are 400gb, so i could make 2 partitions to my external and use for sd and tm, but in the future it will be hard. My point is: lets say i got 800gb of files, and copied a clone at my external drive on an 800gb partition. Could the 200gb partition be enough for my personal files (using tm)? will it automatically delete old files if theres not enough space? If it does, then its fine because i will always be able to have some certain space for tm, only for recent archives
With 400GB of user data? That won't work at all. You're going to be lucky to keep a week's worth of backups in 1 TB, especially if you change things as frequently as I do.

Remember, you can daisy-chain FireWire devices. This fact makes connecting more than one external drive much easier, if you're short on FireWire ports.
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:45 AM   #7
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Unfortunately, you can't.
There are ways. You can partition your system drive, create folders for your data on the second partition (eg. Music, Documents ..etc), then create symbolic links to them on your home directory. This is a bit fiddly. You need to create and login as another admin user, then use a terminal to create the symlinks with the 'su' command.

Once that is done, you can exclude all drives apart from the data partition from Time Machine, and you can continue to backup the first partition of the system drive using SuperDuper.
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:47 AM   #8
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unfortunatelly my external has only a usb port. But u dont get my point. 400gb data is the full disk, but i dont want all those files to be backed up with tm. I only want my home folder. In fact, i dont want to use tm for archiving, but just as a backup, meaning it will replace an old file if its changed. The way i want to use tm actually is just to be able to restore files one-by-one. Meaning, just as having a backup, that i can acess each file separetelly, im not interested in archiving
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Last edited by sOwL; Dec 15, 2008 at 09:27 AM. Reason: fixed some stupid spellings :P
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:47 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by mcnicks View Post
There are ways. You can partition your system drive, create folders for your data on the second partition (eg. Music, Documents ..etc), then create symbolic links to them on your home directory. This is a bit fiddly. You need to create and login as another admin user, then use a terminal to create the symlinks with the 'su' command.

Once that is done, you can exclude all drives apart from the data partition from Time Machine, and you can continue to backup the first partition of the system drive using SuperDuper.
Yes, that DOES work, BUT it doesn't limit backup retention to 1 week, as the OP wanted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sOwL
unfortunatelly my external has only a usb port. But u dont get my point. 400gb data is the full disk, but i dont want all those files to be backed up with tm. I only want my home folder. In fact, i dont want to use tm for archiving, but just as a backup, meaning it will replace an old file if its changed. The way i want to use tm actually is just to be able to restore files one-by-one. Meaning, just as having a backup, that i can acess its file separetelly, im not interesting in archiving
I'm confused. Sure, you can exclude everything except your home folder for Time Machine backups, but that's a royal pain - so many folders need to be added to the exclude list. In fact, given what you've said I think Time Machine isn't right for your needs. It is meant as both a backup and archival tool, and there's no easy way to separate the two functions.
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Last edited by wrldwzrd89; Dec 15, 2008 at 08:53 AM. Reason: Adding quote
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 08:59 AM   #10
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i thought tm prompted you to delete old archives if you dont have enough space. So, if i do have enough space for jsut copying all my files to tm, but dont have space for making archives of them, but just have the most recent backup, it could work, right?
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 09:07 AM   #11
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i thought tm prompted you to delete old archives if you dont have enough space. So, if i do have enough space for jsut copying all my files to tm, but dont have space for making archives of them, but just have the most recent backup, it could work, right?
I was under the impression that Time Machine won't even let you use a disk or partition smaller than the disk you wish to back up. I've never tested this, but if this is true then your idea will definitely not work.
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 09:11 AM   #12
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too sad i cant afford buying another external at this time. I guess i'll keep using superduper and after some time i'll get a new external for tm... But still, i can't afford buying a bigger external than 1gb, so if tm "needs more likely 2x your data space" then too bad

edit: erm, this is stupid. If my drive is like 500gb, but i only want to use tm for the 100gb of it, then it should let me use an 150gb external disk. Just an example. If thats the case, its completelly stupid from apple
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 10:15 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by sOwL View Post
Anyway, i still like the idea of time machine, but how can i make it to not use all that space for archiving? I mean, i dont need 1 month old files to be there, actually i would like to use time machine for archiving lets say a week, and only my personal stuff since i will have a full backup with SD!. Can i do that? I mean, can i make it delete files after a week or so? Also, make it just archive my home folder? (pfff i might have to exclude every single folder exept my home folder)
There's some misinformation in this thread.

Does my backup hard drive have to be the same size or larger than my internal hard drive?

No. Time Machine doesn't care how big your backup drive is as long as it's large enough to store the initial backup. Therefore, if you have a 1TB internal drive and only a 500GB external drive, but only want to backup your home directory — you can — as long as the 500GB drive is large enough to sustain the initial backup.

Can I only use a certain portion of my backup hard drive for backups leaving the rest for other purposes?

Yes. You can partition your hard drive so that Time Machine only uses a certain amount of your backup hard drive for backups. For example, if you have a 1TB hard drive — you could partition it with Disk Utility to give you 500GB for Time Machine and 500GB for other purposes. At that point, Time Machine wouldn't use more than 500GB.

Can I just backup my home folder?

Yes. In order to just backup your home folder you're going to have to add all your other folders on your hard drive (Applications, Developer, Library, System) to the "Do Not Backup" dialog box under options in the Time Machine preference pane.

Can I prevent Time Machine from keeping older files?

Yes and No. By its nature, Time Machine prioritizes your most recent backups. Therefore, you could artificially limit the hard drive space available to Time Machine by partitioning (see above) to keep only your more recent files. However, there is no option to do this automatically. Time Machine by default will use all the available space on a drive (or partition) for backups.

Additionally, you could always do the initial backup and then turn off Time Machine. Then use the "Backup Now" feature whenever you wanted to update your backup. However, that is on you to remember to initialize subsequent backups.

Last edited by jaw04005; Dec 15, 2008 at 10:25 AM.
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