Do I need Carbon Copy Cloner as Part of my iMac backup strategy?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by jaybar, Oct 10, 2013.

  1. jaybar macrumors 6502a


    Dec 11, 2008
    Currently I am using Time Machine to backup to two different external drives. I am also using Crashplan. Is there any advantage to having another external drive, as a bootable clone using CCC.


  2. roland.g macrumors 603


    Apr 11, 2005
    One mile up and soaring
    I use CCC but only to run an incremental clone of my external iTunes drive. However, I currently use Time Machine and will be adding an offsite 2ndary Time Machine backup that is a combination of the iTunes media drive and first Time Machine drive and will use CCC to run that backup.
  3. dangerly macrumors regular


    Oct 27, 2009
    European Disunion
    I use both Time Machine and CCC.
    Time Machine for system backup on two external drives.
    CCC to backup my Home Folder on other two external drives.
  4. alksion macrumors 68000


    Sep 10, 2010
    Los Angeles County
    Necessary or mandatory? Maybe not.

    Helpful or beneficial? Absolutely.

    The more backups and various forms of those back ups are invaluable and only add to your arsenal against hard disk catastrophic failures.

    My plan in the near future is:
    1. RAID 1 external time machine backup
    2. RAID 1 external CCC backup
    3. Crashplan+ offsite / cloud backup

    Right now I'm just using a single drive external with time machine and another single drive external that has backups of sensitive files from my hard disk.

    When I have the appropriate funds, I will initiate my 3 step plan!
  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    [[ Is there any advantage to having another external drive, as a bootable clone using CCC. ]]

    You ALWAYS want to have a second, fully bootable backup around.

    Sooner or later, you're going to have an "I can't boot" moment. In a situation like this, you just connect the bootable backup, and "switch boot" to it. Now, you're fully booted to the finder, and can begin your diagnostics and repair.

    If your "main drive" has gone bad on you, having a bootable clone backup can save you a LOT of time and trouble...
  6. mapleleafer macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2009
    I use Time Machine for hourly backups when I'm working. If I screw up a file, I'll lose at most an hour's work.
    I use Superduper! (similar to CCC) at the end of each work day to make a bootable clone in case my hard drive packs it in.
    I use CrashPlan in case an asteroid flattens my building (when I'm not there).
    I run a business, so I cannot afford to lose anything. Having a bootable clone is handy but may not be necessary depending on your needs.
  7. Djay1 macrumors member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Middle Tennessee
    Well worth your considering in my opinion.

    I have used CCC for a number of years and it has reliably provided a bootable external drive that gives me a bit of extra assurance should my internal bootable drive decide to "chill out".
  8. richard13 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 1, 2008
    Mill Creek, WA
    It really depends on how concerned/paranoid you are about your data. I don't think any one of us would be too happy if we lost our data but I also think a lot of these elaborate backup schemes are truly overkill.

    I would suggest to anyone, even the most casual user, to at least use Time Machine. This is a great solution to get back previous revisions and to restore your system in the event of primary storage failure. Of course, other backup solutions like CCC work fine as well.

    Offsite storage is great if you are concerned about theft/fire/major incidents. Cloud based storage works good for this. Even the old "back up everything to external HD and drop in a safe deposit box" works.

    It seems to me like you are already set!
  9. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR

    I think you have your priorities straight.
    1. Time Machine
    2. Crashplan
    You now have 3 copies of your data (original, local, offsite)... and you have deep versioning, so that you can always turn back the clock for any set/subset of your data. It also works automatically... every hour (or with CP, probably more often) without a human. It is an extremely powerful combination.

    Personally, I think that you are better off than 99+% of people who build elaborate setups with RAID (which introduces a new set of problems), NAS (which is not supported by TM), manually transferring clones to safe deposit boxes (which relies on horribly unreliable humans). Generally speaking... these complex setups have flaws that you just do not have.

    There certainly is not harm to having a clone in addition (not instead of) your setup. It is trivial to run automatically (ex: nightly).... and it is cheap.

    Personally, I do not need a bootable clone backup... because I have multiple machines that I could use. However, I do make clones of my media to an external HDD nightly. This way, if my primary computer was to crash... I could instantly move my media libraries (Aperture, FCPX, ext) to any of my 4 iMacs or 5 MBA's.... and continue working without a pause. I just do not need to keep any single machine running continuously. However... If I had a single Mac household, then I would probably change my current "media clone" to a "full system clone" nightly.

  10. ragtop232 macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2012
    Here's my backup scheme. I'll start by saying I don't use my iMac in a manner that I'm creating files that are critical, so I don't utilize Time Machine. I have a 27" iMac 3.5 GHz i7 with 512 GB SSD. I then have two external drives, one a samsung 840 Pro 256 GB SSD connected via Thunderbolt via an adapter I put together, and then I have a 2 TB G-Raid USB 3 drive connected to my iMac as well.

    I use Carbon Copy Cloner to make a Daily incremental backup to the Samsung 840 Pro SSD. I then use Carbon Copy Cloner to make a full weekly DMG file backup to the G-Raid USB 3 drive. I also have other folders on the G-Raid for all my Photo's, Movies, Important documents, etc.

    Next, I use CrashPlan to backup all of my G-Raid drive to the Cloud. My theory behind the scheme is if there's a catastrophe and I loose everything at home, at the most I've lost 1 week of new data as I can resort to my CrashPlan backup and restore a new computer from the DMG file. If I loose an internal HD, I can boot to the external thunderbolt SSD and at max loose one days data. If I loose my external SSD, I can simply purchase another and immediately do another backup of the internal drive. If I loose the G-Raid, I can purchase another and restore from CrashPlan.

    This probably wouldn't work for those of you that must limit loss to an hour or less, but for me, it works great. You've probably also noted that my external Thunderbolt SSD is smaller than my internal SSD, but I keep most of my data on the G-Raid and never plan on the internal drive getting over 200 GB in size. It's currently only 62 GB as I use symbolic links to my media on the G-Raid.


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