How back up nowadays? iCloud Drive and not everything on Mac

Discussion in 'macOS Sierra (10.12)' started by johannnn, Apr 18, 2017.

  1. johannnn macrumors 65816


    Nov 20, 2009
    I run Sierra and iCloud Drive, and it seems not every file in the iCloud Drive folder is physically on my Mac. Sometimes it is clearly downloading the file when I try to open it. I haven't bothered to read up on the features of Sierra, but I assume it works similar to the the optimisation of Photos on my iPhone, where it also has to download photos sometimes when I try to open them.

    How do I backup this data? If I use e.g. Time Machine or SuperDuper!, how do they handle the new iCloud Drive? Will the software manually download all files and delete them? Will this cause the backup-process to take ages to complete?
  2. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2011
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    iCloud Drive does selectively sync by default. That's good on a limited-space laptop, but bad for backup. What else is the iCloud Drive synced to?

    In my case, it's synced to my Mac Mini, so I have Optimize disabled on the Mini to force the entire iCloud Drive to be locally synced, and to back up via Time Machine and CrashPlan. I also have iCloud Drive excluded from Time Machine on my MacBook, no sense backing it up there.

    If you don't have a desktop computer, I'd suggest you turn off "Optimize" to ensure that you get a good backup.

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