backup problems - Catch 22!

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by dobbin, Sep 21, 2004.

  1. dobbin macrumors 6502a

    dobbin

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    England
    #1
    I have a catch-22 problem. I don't want to try fixing my system until I've backed up my data, but I can't back up my data until I've fixed my system. The problem is with backup!

    Help!

    I wanted to backup my system this morning using Backup, something that I have done successfully in the past. The things to be backed up included my iPhoto library which is on an external firewire hard disk. Most other things (eg address book contents and application prefs) are on the internal hard disk.

    Backup calculated that I would need 7 CDs and asked me to enter a blank CD. I then got a message saying there was an unrecoverable internal error. Clicking OK in this message box caused Backup to Quit. I have run disk utility and fsck and everything seems to be OK with my disk. I have rerun backup and the same thing happened again twice more.

    What should I do next? I'm loathe to do anything too major as I don't have an up to date backup. But I can't do the backup as it won't work. Everything else seems to be running fine with my system.

    What is the best way to backup my critical files without using backup? The *only* thing that I really don't want to lose is my photos. Everything else can be recreated or recovered from somewhere or someone. What is the best way to safely copy my photos onto CDs in case something goes wrong while I'm trying to fix backup.

    Shall I just burn lots of iPhoto albums using iPhoto or there a quicker way?

    Any advice would be appreciated.
     
  2. yippy macrumors 68020

    yippy

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #2
    If you have enough space on your computer you could do an Archive and Install.

    You said you have an external Firewire harddisk. Is it big enough to hold your Users folder (where basicaly all important data is kept). If it is you could use Carbon Copy Cloner from Bombich to copy your data over and then reinsall the system.
     
  3. dobbin thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dobbin

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    England
    #3
    Thank for your quick reply yippy. I have plenty of space on the external drive, but I don't want to start installing software (eg CCC) if there is a potential problem with my system. Currently my photos are on the external disk. I want to get them onto CDs asap just in case something goes wrong.

    I know I can do this by burning CDs in iPhoto but that seems laborious for 4Gb of photos - about 100 rolls / albums.

    How else can I copy the photos to CDs?
     
  4. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #4
    Well, any number of apps let you burn CDs. IIRC, Toast will do it, and automatically break up the files into separate CDs. But you said you don't want to install a new app (why?).
     
  5. yippy macrumors 68020

    yippy

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #5
    Carbon Copy Cloner is hardly an install, you can run it from a the disk image it comes in I think. Basicly it is a very nice GUI on some complicated ditto commands. In other words, it just tells your existing underlying unix to use its very powerfull copy methods. I think it would be safe.
     
  6. syniac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Location:
    Europe
    #6
    Just copy anything important over to your external HD by dragging, then disconnect that before repairing your system. If you run into permissions problems, just zip or sit archive it first.

    Why would you want to back-up your system onto CDs if you have an external drive anyway? CDs are good for permanent things.
     
  7. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    #7

    maybe he wants to remove the original files from his internal drive to free up space on the drive.....if so, then making a cd with the files gives him his back-up by providing him a second copy of them in case the external drive dies unexpectedly
     
  8. dobbin thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dobbin

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2002
    Location:
    England
    #8
    I use the external drive as my main drive as my mac only has a 20 Gb internal drive.

    The reason I didn't want to start installing software is in case there is a more serious problem that reveals itself when I start playing around trying to fix this. I only have this one copy of my photos and I wanted to get a safe permanent copy before takin any risks, however small the risk is.

    I have now made space on the internal drive and copied the photos back there.

    Next, I will disconnect the external drive and then try to fix the original problem.

    Thanks for your advice guys.
     

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