Back up

Discussion in 'iMac' started by KC2LLW, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. KC2LLW macrumors newbie

    Aug 29, 2012
    My iMac is a few years old and I am starting to worry about losing my data photo's Ect... I have time machine on a 500gb USB hard drive but is that enough? Should I have an online backup like Crashplan or Jungle disk? Should I have another USB hard drive also. Is there something out there where I can set it and forget it?
  2. marc11 macrumors 68000

    Mar 30, 2011
    NY USA
    Yes yes and yes. I use a time capsule, Backblaze to keep a complete online back up of my data (almost 1 tb for $50 a year) and a USB drive that a clone my hdd too once a month and keep off site. I also host my pics on Flickr to share with family but also acts as a back up too.

    Backblaze is set it and forget it like Time Machine. There are many other options but you get the idea. The best back up plan IMHO is one incremental local, one complete clone off site and one online either complete or selected most irreplaceable files.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Having another backup method is always safer but not really something people do.

    I use TimeMachine (to a NAS) and use CarbonCopyCloner to a different external drive. I also have a portable drive that I take offsite just to be safe.

    I'm not a fan of online backups. If the company had a hardware (or even software) failure your backups could be at risk. If the company went bankrupt your backups would be at risk. I'd rather manage my data and not let another company do it.
  4. noteple macrumors 65816


    Aug 30, 2011
    Time machine it's automatic along with back in time for certain pick and choose restorations
    Super duper for a full image back up to a removable hard drive.
    Crashplan for a lightweight multi platform backup to other offsite pc's and into the cloud.
    Crashplan has unlimited Family PC's
  5. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    One backup is enough if you're not particularly concerned about losing the data.

    A Time Machine backup to an external is fine. Unless it, and your computer, get ripped off or burn up or die in an electrical surge get the picture.

    And you didn't really give us enough info to advise you; what is the best for one person is a waste for another.

    But generally it's good to have two backups of critical stuff, at least one offsite. That can be an external taken to your auntie's or cloud storage or whatever.

    And different types of data require different strategies. For example, your Mac App Store purchases are backed up by Apple. You might have a system on a DVD or thumb drive. Your email is already in the cloud. How you back up stuff depends on what and where it is and how you use it.
  6. Fishrrman, Sep 3, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2012

    Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    "Is there something out there where I can set it and forget it?"

    There may be apps and services that claim to do this, but my advice is, insofar as backup is concerned, you will get out of it what you put into it.

    Put just a small amount of thought and effort into it, and you will be rewarded in a "moment of extreme need". And those moments do happen.

    Even if you go with some kind of "internet backup solution", you should still keep a "local copy" of your data. And the BEST kind of local backup to have around is a bootable clone backup of your internal drive.

    You can assemble a reliable backup system for less than $100. Here's what I suggest:
    1. Get one of these:
    (many items shown, they all work the same, just pick one you like that's cheap)
    2. Get a "bare" SATA hard drive from the vendor of your choice (sometimes you can even find a "spare" that someone doesn't need any more)
    3. Download version 3.4.6 of CarbonCopyCloner from here:
    (version 3.4.6 is free to use)

    When you have these things, do this:
    1. Connect the dock to the drive
    2. Put the drive into the dock and turn it on (it won't be initialized and you may get an alert to this effect)
    3. Launch Disk Utility and initialize the drive (use GUID format, one or more partitions as needed)
    4. Once initialized the drive will mount on the desktop -- give it a recognizable name.
    5. Launch CCC. On the left, choose your internal drive as your source.
    6. On the right, pick the docked drive as your target
    7. Choose to backup everything and let CCC do its thing.

    When done, you will have a fully bootable "clone" backup of your internal drive.
    (Note -- a simple clone backup with CCC will not backup the "emergency partition" that the OS creates on your internal drive, but that's not necessary -- with a CCC clone, you have a backup "emergency" drive that is MUCH MORE USEFUL to you.

    Do this, and you'll be both backed up, AND, you will have a bootable drive close at hand.

    If you have an office where you can securely store a hard drive, you might consider buying a second bare drive, and create a second CCC clone and keep it as your "offsite backup". Having a USB/SATA dock makes things like this incredibly easy.
  7. uptownnyc macrumors 6502

    Mar 28, 2011
    I like to have 3 copies of my important data (documents, photos, etc.).

    1. One copy on the primary device (desktop/laptop, etc.)
    2. One copy on a local device (External drive, home server, time capsule, etc.)
    3. One copy on a cloud-backup service

    This way if I lose my primary device (laptop, etc.) from theft or it gets damaged, I can get fast access to this data from my local device. If there's a catastrophic event like a fire that wipes out the primary device and the local backup device, then I've got the cloud to restore things fully.

    This gives me enough assurances that no matter what kind of problem I encounter, there should be a way to restore my data. If you don't like paying for a cloud backup (I pay for Crashplan) you can always use their software for free and backup to a family or friend's computer in another location. In terms of backup software, theirs is the best I've found in terms of ease-of-use, and set-it-and-forget-it operation.
  8. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    Always have multiple backups, and at least 1 a bootable backup.

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