Ccc and partition/backup question

Discussion in 'macOS' started by GabooN, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. GabooN macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2008
    Windsor, Ontario
    I have a 120gb ssd on the way. I currently have 500gb momentus xt in my 13" mbp.

    Currently I backup the 500gb to a 1tb (2 1tb drives) raid 1 NAS using Time Machine. I also run a Ccc once a week onto a 500gb external for a bootable clone.

    Having the 120gb ssd and 500gb hdd messes with this formula a little. I think the plan is as follows, and wanted to ask if it should work.

    - still use the NAS as the time machine backup, and include both the ssd and hdd.

    - make a 120gb partition on the 500gb hdd. Use Ccc to clone the ssd onto the partition.

    - if I take the 500gb External drive that I currently clone to, can I create a 120gb partition on the external, clone the 120gb hdd partition (or the original ssd for that matter) and then clone the remaining 380gb onto the remaining 380gb of the external.

    This way I can maintain my time machine and clone method, albeit with an extra copy of the ssd. I like the idea of the clone being in my laptop in case I need it while on the go or visiting my family out of town.

    Does what I described sound like it will work or am I missing a simpler way? (I do need to partition the external drive in order to Ccc the two separate partitions to it right?)
  2. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I lost you there somewhere. I also have a Momentus XT and I've considered going to an SSD but I'd rather use a larger SSD so I don't have to "think about" how to fit everything and I'm not faced with swapping out my optical disk (which I use for ripping movies).

    But if I did want to change my setup, I think I'd take my Documents, Movies and Pictures folders and move them to another partition. That would easily free up a couple hundred gig and I could get away with the OS and my somewhat empty home folder on a 120 GB SSD. I would then use sym links to the Documents, etc folders I had on the second partition.

    TM backs up things and wants to put them back where it found them. If TM backs something up from internal, it will try to put them back there. The sym link might be successful in fooling TM to put something back where I want it instead of where it got it from originally.

    Other than moving certain folders off to a separate partition, there is no easy way that I can think of to "split" an existing 500 GB HDD. Also CCC will try to clone an entire disk in file mode if the disk it is cloning is the disk you booted from. This is a good thing as block mode would bring over temp files and cruft you'd be better off leaving behind.

    So here is how I'd proceed:
    1 - Make a CCC of your existing HDD exactly as is to an external drive using a usb to sata adapter or enclosure (so you can get back if you mess things up too badly).
    2 - Boot from the new drive to prove that it works (by holding down option and picking the usb drive you cloned to at boot time).
    3 -This is where things start to get a little risky: Delete the folders you plan to move to a different partition and see how you are doing on space. If you are well below 120 GB, make ANOTHER CCC backup of your mostly empty Momentus XT that you will eventually restore to your new SSD.
    4 - restore the files you deleted in step 3 to a secondary drive or partition, possibly using a usb to sata adapter to the drive you plan to use for "extra" space and link to it from the now smaller partition you just backed up in step 3. Prove to yourself you can still see and work with all your stuff. Note that some OSX apps to not follow sym links correctly so take your time testing and make sure you are happy with the usability of your "split" system.
    5 - If all went well up to here, simply restore the CCC you did in step 3 to the SSD (using a usb to sata adapter)
    6 - test booting from the SSD again making the sym links to the stuff you restored to an "extra" partition
    7 - Only if all of the above worked and you can routinely boot from the SSD should you open up your Mac, remove the Momentus XT and install the SSD as your new default boot drive.

    Of course if the wheels come off at any point, you can fall back to the backup you made in step 1 and you haven't lost a thing. Notice how I left Time Machine out of the picture? It isn't as quick or robust as CCC for doing this sort of thing. Only turn TM back on after you are satisfied your new setup is running flawlessly, making sure not to "mix" your new TM backup with the TM backup you were using before the change (lest you confuse the heck out of TM and possibly wind up with a corrupted backup).

    hope this helps...
  3. GabooN thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2008
    Windsor, Ontario
    Thanks, this info is helpful for when I'm doing the actual switch. Many of the steps are what I already had in mind when I was looking into it. I actually already slimmed down the data on my internal drive to about 100gb in prep for the ssd arriving, moving Movies, Pictures, iTunes Media (only the media folder, not libraries etc) etc. to a spare external I have. I then symlinked those all back to the home folder so that I didn't have to edit the location of the home folder at all. I have been running it like this for a day now and all is working well. I have less than 120gb on my internal (simulating the sad capacity) and the stuff I have on the external will be what I eventually move to the 500gb internal drive.

    My actual question though was more regarding once I have everything swapped, and up and running. I was wondering about my planned backup strategy for the two would-be internal drives (120gb + 500gb) and whether I could use CCC in the manner I described.

    With what I described in the first post, I like that I will have an internal backup of my boot drive (ssd) as well as an external backup of the internal hdd (which includes the ssd backup as well as the extra file storage partition). This way if something were to happen to my entire backup, I could restore everything to a new computer completely.

    *edit* Oh I overlooked your time machine comments at the end. I definitely plan to use CCC as my main utility for the switch, and won't be using time machine until the system is working and settled in. I'm trying to wrap my head around what external drive will be used for what, since I have a few new drives for media, and a mac mini on the way that I have to backup also (might ONLY use CCC for that one and skip time machine since it will be htpc and media will be from usb drives which are cloned anyways).
  4. GabooN thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 31, 2008
    Windsor, Ontario
    I tried it out myself and it seems to be working just as i planned for cloning.

    i took the 500gb external that i usually clone my internal drive to and i created 120gb and 380gb partitions. I set up CCC to clone my internal, which i dwindled down to ~90gb. I also set up CCC to clone the external where i had dumped my iTunes and aperture libraries, onto the 380gb partition. other than having an extra partition to look at on my desktop, this worked fine and will probably be my solution for after I configure the SSD+HDD setup.

    I may have these drives hooked up to the mac mini i have on the way so that all this can be done over the network from my macbook pro to the mini htpc setup. starting my Masters this september so trying to get everything sorted well in advance and well backed up.

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