Create a bootable backup clone?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by ptc6, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. ptc6 macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2011
    or something similar?

    Since my MBP is new and working good to date, Im wondering if I could set a restore point (like windows has one)

    I don't know the best way to do it on a mac?
    Can anyone tell me, a weekly or months backup would do, Can i et it to automatically do this, or would I need external Hard drive the same size as my macs HD (500GB)

    Any advice would be great, I'm new to Apple.
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    "I don't know the best way to do it on a mac?"

    Easy, and cheap, too.

    a. Get one of these:
    (many items shown, they all work the same, pick one you like that's cheap)

    b. Download CarbonCopyCloner here:
    It's free and one of the best pieces of Mac software out there.

    c. Get a "bare hard drive" from the vendor of your choice (I like

    Once you have these things, do this:

    1. Put the drive in the dock, connect the dock to the Mac, turn it on.

    2. The drive will need to be initialized, use "Disk Utility" to do this. I suggest that you use a "GUID" partition map with one or more partitions (your choice).

    3. After initializing, the drive will appear on the desktop. Launch CCC. On the left, select your source drive (will be the internal drive). On the right, select your target drive (will be the docked drive).

    4. Choose a full backup for this first time. After the full backup is done, you can periodically update it and CCC will do an incremental backup (backing up only what has changed, much faster).

    5. When the backup clone is done, TEST it by doing this:
    a. Restart the Mac
    b. As soon as you hear the startup sound, hold down the option key and KEEP HOLDING IT DOWN. In a few moments, the "startup manager" will appear.
    c. Select your docked drive with the pointer, and hit the enter/return key
    d. The Mac should now boot via USB from the docked drive (it will take longer, because the connection is slower).
    e. When you get to the Finder, you should now be booted from the docked drive. CAREFUL! It should look exactly as does your internal drive! You may need to go to "About this Mac" (under the Apple menu) to verify which drive the Mac is booted from. I suggest you change the desktop picture on your backup drive to something which will immediately identify it as such, less confusion that way.

    Once you've verified that you have created a bootable clone, you can restart and put the backup drive aside. I'd suggest at least weekly incremental updates. If you get one of the USB/SATA docks (did I mention that they were _cheap_?), you will find that they come in handy for all sorts of uses....
  3. ptc6 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2011
    Thanks, great reply.

    Is their much difference between a dock and just an external hard drive in casing?

    I see a lot of people mentioning docks, I'm just wondering is there a reason they are mentioned more and would they have a problem with dust?

    I never really heard much about docks until recently reading posts and people mentioning them.
    Thanks for the software tip also. :)
  4. johnhurley macrumors 6502a


    Aug 29, 2011
    The huge advantage to using docks is how easy you can pull out one drive and put in another one. Plus a given dock might support usb 2.0/usb 3.0/firewire/esata ( multiple connection types ).

    Rotating your backup drives becomes really easy.

    The hard drives keep dust out from their own internals. No real dust issue with the dock either ... it just serves to provide a connection point with the hard drive.

    If you have something in a casing and want to switch drives you have to take it apart ... change drive ... put it back together ... not always very easy.

    Most docks also support smaller notebook size drives as long as the regular size drives for internal hard drives ... plus work just fine with an ssd ( solid state drive also ).
  5. ptc6 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2011
    Thanks a lot for the replies, much appreciated.

    Will order the dock now and sort this out, :)
  6. Franny4321 macrumors member

    Dec 30, 2011
    Thanks Fishrman, a great post. I followed the directions and everything went quite smooth. Appreciate such great help.

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