Backing Up My Mac

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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Can I back it up to Drop Box? I'm trying to keep from buying another drive. I haven't upgraded the OS X 5.8 and it's now or never.
 

matty1551

macrumors 6502
Jul 7, 2009
283
25
Can I back it up to Drop Box? I'm trying to keep from buying another drive. I haven't upgraded the OS X 5.8 and it's now or never.
Unless you plan to pay for a dropbox subscription that supports your hard drive's amount of storage, no you cannot.

It'd most likely be much cheaper to buy a drive and backup.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
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2 gb

The Hardware Overview says I have 2 GB of memory. Do I need more than that to back up my computer? Sorry for being so uninformed. Drop Box says it offers 2 GB for free.
 

yjchua95

macrumors 604
Apr 23, 2011
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GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
The Hardware Overview says I have 2 GB of memory. Do I need more than that to back up my computer? Sorry for being so uninformed. Drop Box says it offers 2 GB for free.
That's only your RAM, not your hard drive space.

Open up About This Mac and see the Storage area.

It should appear like my screenshot.

PS you should really upgrade to Yosemite to stay secure. Besides, as far as I know, the Dropbox app doesn't support 10.5.8 anymore.

You should also upgrade your RAM to at least 4GB or more, and also a new hard drive to keep your Mac running smoothly.
 

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JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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2 gb

My MBP is 7-8 yrs old. Here is the screen shot of the overview and a screen shot of the HD info when I click on the drive symbol. So my question is still, how big of a drive do I need to use to back up my whole computer?
 

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leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,963
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Buy an external drive (or two, if you value your data), they are dirt cheap. And while you are at it, also buy a new computer. Or at least start saving for it. I doubt that your laptop will last long with its age.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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How much is dirt cheap?

And where do you find this "dirt cheap" drive? What I've seen is $80 and I don't know if I need one that big or not. That's what I'm trying to find out.
 

leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
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4,550
A decent quality 2TB external drive is around $100. Look around at newegg or another online store.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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According to this screen shot

Do I need a drive bigger than 128 GB's? I can get a flash drive with that for $35.
 

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JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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Thanks so much Matty. That's what I needed to know. My sister is trying to tell me to just back up particular things that I want, but I'm sure I would mess it up somehow.
 

Mik3F

macrumors 6502
Feb 3, 2011
256
2
You could get away with just backing up your User Area if you save everything there

You would then have to reinstall any apps after you upgrade.

Easiest option though is another HDD in a USB caddy and then use Carbon Copy Cloner or Super Duper to make a full backup

How big is your home folder?
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
0
Thanks for the idea.
90.03 GB
I need to save apps I don't have a disc for.

I was thinking of trying a 128 GB flash drive, hoping I could format it for Time Machine and exclude some stuff. (I can format a 4 GB flash drive I have, so maybe I could. But I know it's not guaranteed for T. Machine.)

I bought my MBP November 2007, but I just found out the serial number is for a 2006 machine. I guess it is like getting a car. They make them a year ahead. So I missed the cutoff date of late 20007 to be able to upgrade to Yosemite. The latest I can go is Lion 10.7 which was release in 2010. Each will cost $20 from Apple. I hope it will last a while. Meanwhile, they don't make batteries for the 15" anymore, but thankfully they are still available through Amazon.
 

Mik3F

macrumors 6502
Feb 3, 2011
256
2
To upgrade to Lion from 10.5.8 you will first need to upgrade to Snow Leopard to enable the Mac App Store, unless you can get hold of a Lion USB installer
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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USB installer

Thanks. I've never heard of a USB installer. All I know is that I can get the Snow Leopard and Lion upgrades for from Apple for $20 each.

Come to think of it, last time I tried to burn a CD it didn't work.
 

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Bomb Bloke

macrumors regular
Feb 12, 2015
222
6
Tasmania (AU)
Don't mess about - backup everything, then do it again after upgrading to Snow Leopard, then do it again after updating Snow Leopard to its latest release, and so on. If you're using the in-built Time Machine backup software, it'll automatically perform incremental backups once an hour - copying just the files that've changed on your drive with each new backup it makes. This is ideal, and you'll likely find it far simpler than any other backup solution (especially if you find you need to restore any backups).

You never know when a disc will fail to read, or simply turn up missing. If your personal files are important to you, then you should be backing them up on a regular basis anyway.

Be aware that Lion will remove Rosetta from your system, which will prevent you from running any PowerPC apps.

You need at least 200gb. They don't sell drives that small.
Even if you do happen to find one, you're generally better off going for a capacity that's at least double that of the amount you reckon you'll want to backup. A 320gb drive indeed sounds ideal.

The bare minimum Time Machine will accept is the amount of data to be backed up + 20% (a bit over 150gb, in your case), but even keeping in mind that further backups would be incremental, that'd only be good for one backup. Going for double the capacity means you get a complete backup, then a whole bunch of incremental ones.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
0
Thanks Bomb Bloke. I really don't want more than one temporary back up at a time. Never had a problem in over 7 yrs. (I know it's about time.) But I need to put it off.

I have an Intel based machine. Could I have any PowerPC apps now? Not sure that I do.

My disc drive is reading program discs. I just pulled a very old one out of a drawer. A RosettaStone demo, and got this message.
 

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JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
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So by upgrading to Lion might lose apps that came with Leopard? or just something that I might have picked up along the way? Okay, I just looked at the link you sent. I'll try to see if I have any of those.
 
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Bomb Bloke

macrumors regular
Feb 12, 2015
222
6
Tasmania (AU)
You see the link I posted above, yes? Have a read through that and see what you can figure out.

It may well be that you have no PowerPC apps, or at least, none that you care about.

But if you're still using eg AppleWorks, upgrading isn't so easy.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
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Thanks. I guess I didn't edit fast enough. I checked the link after I posted.
I don't use Apple Works. Hopefully it'll all work out.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
0
Power PC

Looks like I'll lose Word if I go to Lion. Is there any work around so that I can read Word files that I have?
 

Bomb Bloke

macrumors regular
Feb 12, 2015
222
6
Tasmania (AU)
You could either install a later version of Office, or install Pages. Pages will likely introduce some minor formatting errors to any Word documents it opens, but you should be able to correct them without too much trouble, then save the result as a Pages document.

Though you must have a very old version of Word if it won't run under Lion. Word 2008 is the as far back as you can go before you lose compatibility - so you'd be on, what, 2004?

Note that the Office 2008 installer requires Rosetta, even if the apps it installs do not, and even the installer can be made to work with a few work-arounds.
 

JanetRedding

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2015
14
0
Word

2004, Version 11.6.6 (111104) I "borrowed" it.
I won't be getting Office any time soon. It was just easier working with the PC population and public terminals.

I thought I had Pages, but turns out I just have the link for the 30-day trial that came with the machine. :(

My big concern is that the new version of Skype will work.
 
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