How do you do off-site backups?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by WesCole, Aug 13, 2012.

  1. WesCole macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Right now, I have time machine backing up every house to a FW800 drive and CCC cloning my drive once a day. The problem is that both of these backups are on-site, so if something happens (God forbid) to the place my iMac is, I will still lose my data, besides the files I keep on Dropbox.

    So, my question is how to you guys and gals do your off-site backups? I was just going to buy a drive and pretty much clone my time machine drive and store it somewhere else like a family members house or something. However, I don't want to have to go all the way over there, bring the drive home, clone it, and drive back every day. I looked into online backup solutions, but with several gigabytes changing every day, my Internet connection would slow down most of the day.
     
  2. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    Jan 5, 2012
    #2
    I have 2 copies at home, 1 copy in my car, and 1 copy at my sister's place. The really really important stuff I have it on the cloud as well.

    About once a month I'd synch up the copy I have in my car. Then whenever I visit my sister's place I'd bring the car's copy in and synch it up with the one in her home.

    My data store doesn't change that frequent enough where I need to worry about frequency of synch much.
     
  3. WesCole thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    I never thought about keeping a copy in my car. Very cool. Of course, I would have to encrypt the drive, though, in case someone decided to take it.
     
  4. flynz4 macrumors 68040

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    Portland, OR
    #4
    Cloud backup is the way to go. Very inexpensive and it would be the most secure of any of your data.

    I've used Mozy and Crashplan+. Backblaze and Carbonite are two others. Personally, I use Crashplan+

    /Jim
     
  5. glitch44 macrumors 65816

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    #5
  6. Reaktor5 macrumors 6502a

    Reaktor5

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    #6
    Listening to TWiT, Leo mentioned this strategy and it seems pretty solid for important data:

    1. Keep 3 copies of any important file.
    This means keeping your original, plus at least two copies of that original. This builds in redundancy, so that if one of your backups fails, or if a file becomes corrupted, you have it somewhere else.


    2. Use 2 different types of media to backup the files.
    The idea here is that you don’t want to put all of your eggs in one type of storage basket. So if you back up to a hard drive and also to optical media (like a DVD), you’re protected in the event that one of these fails. In my experience, backing up locally to anything other than a hard drive or network drive is cumbersome, which means that you won’t do it as often as you should. As a result, I bend the rules a bit and count rule #3 as a different type of media.


    3. Store 1 copy off site.
    If your house burns down, or someone breaks into it and steals all your gear, you’d be out of luck with only local backups. As a result, one of your backups should be offsite. I’ve previously written about CrashPlan as an offsite backup option. CrashPlan offers a free option, if you can back up to your own drive in an offsite location, or to a family member’s computer. If you don’t mind paying for offline backup, the Family Unlimited plan is a great deal, allowing you to back up 10 computers for $119 per year.

    http://www.40tech.com/2012/06/12/follow-the-3-2-1-backup-rule-to-safeguard-your-files/
     
  7. iMikeT macrumors 68020

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    #7


    I used to listen to TWiT religiously and have fallen behind so I'm not going to bother for a while. As nice as a guy Leo seems to be, I've found a lot of what says never holds a lot of substance. Much of it is because Leo obviously has ADD and changes his mind about things every five minutes. One minute he likes something, the next he doesn't, the next he likes it again, and so on.

    However, I do have to agree with the backup strategy. Then again, he got that from another guy if I remember correctly.

    ----------

    As far as off-site backups goes...

    There are paid solutions you can go with like Carbonite. It's internet based backups to cloud storage. The only problem is it's dependent on your bandwidth.

    A simple and free solution is iCloud. With this, backup your most important pieces of data like contacts and documents.

    A real off-site solution is what one poster said earlier about having a drive in a family member's home. What you could do is find someone you really trust, a friend or family member and do exactly this. Pick the up the drive(s) and sync every month or two and bring it back, in the meantime, you can spend some quality time with the person.
     
  8. Reaktor5 macrumors 6502a

    Reaktor5

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    #8
    I like some of the analysis he and his guests give and it's as close as TechTV as I can get so I'll take it.

    Yes he did mention the name of the guy who had come up with that idea but I can't find it for the life of me.
     
  9. iMikeT macrumors 68020

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    #9

    Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy the analysis and opinions. It becomes very difficult to follow at times when they go off into tangent after tangent and completely forget about what they were talking about. Some of the things they say are a little off the wall too. Keep in mind that Leo thinks carbohydrates are bad for people, something he got from a guy who wrote a book about nutrition and completely eliminating carbs from the diet. I know, topic for another thread. :)
     
  10. mannyo1221 macrumors member

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    Sep 21, 2011
    Location:
    Blandford, UK.
    #10
    I keep a number of copies of all my data.

    I have a 2011 27" imac, and a 2010 Macbook Pro (upgraded to 1TB Storage and 8GB RAM). Both of these machines have the same key data, so my Music and Photos / Videos are kept and updated on both.

    I also have a full time machine backup to an external USB drive that I keep at home to enable rapid system recovery should one of the drives die.

    I also have a manually created backup of this data at home on a Windows server, which is backed up using Windows Server Backup to a USB HDD which I rotate with another that I keep in my desk drawer offsite at work.

    Most of data remains static and is generally only added to, so I don't bother with daily backups and tend to opt for weekly.
     
  11. TheRocketmac macrumors member

    TheRocketmac

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    Jan 19, 2011
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    #11
    Systems CCC to Synology NAS (encrypted volume) that dumps to rotating drives which end up in a safe. Also use crashplan for off-site in an encrypted disk image for files we can't lose. We also do a once/month drive swap stored at our safe deposit box.
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    California
    #12
    If you have Mountain Lion or Lion, you can encrypt Time Machine backups.

    I know you said online backup would be a struggle for you because of the amount of data involved, but you can use Crashplan's software with no cost to backup to a friend or relative's computer off site. Just setup the Crashplan software on both machines and it runs in the background. This would get you offsite backup without paying. You can set it to only run at night and that might help with your congestion concerns.
     
  13. driftless macrumors demi-god

    driftless

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    #13
    I have been struggling with this issue as well. I currently have a Time Capsule and an external HD inn addition to my macs. I signed up for CrashPlan+ twice. Both time the software made my iMac "hang"; I spend time on the phone with AppleCare both times and finally removed CrashPlan which resolved the problem. I don't hear others post the same problem so your experience may be better. There are a couple other issues with online services like CrashPlan. First, they are SLOW to upload. Very slow. It may take two weeks for the first back-up of a drive over 500GB. If you are backing up video or large amounts of pics, there will be a period of vulnerability until CrashPlan, or other service, actually backs up your data. Second, if your ISP has a cap on your broadband usage, you will quickly blow through a 250GB/mo cap. What I decided to do is just use inexpensive externals like the $99.00 Seagate Backup Plus http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/874906-REG/Seagate_stbu1000102_1TB_Backup_Plus_Portable.html and keep copies off-site.
     
  14. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #14
    It is not cheap, but I know Crashplan offers a service where they send you a drive and you do the first backup to that drive and send it to them to get over the hump of that first large upload.
     
  15. driftless macrumors demi-god

    driftless

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    #15
    I did not know that they did that. They do offer to overnight a drive to you, at some cost, in case you need to do a backup.
     
  16. Mr. McMac Suspended

    Mr. McMac

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    #16
    I keep offsite backups in my garage. It's far enough away from my house that it won't burn in case of fire.
     
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #17
    Here is more info.
     
  18. Reaktor5 macrumors 6502a

    Reaktor5

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    #18
    Once the initial backup is done it's incremental over time. And since it's doing everything in the background, you don't really have to worry about managing it either. Schedule it all at night or during the day when you're at work. If your data is that important it'll be worth it if something goes wrong and you actually have a backup.

    ----------

    Flood? Tornado? Earthquake? ...Meteor? ;)

    Lots more to consider than just a fire.
     
  19. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

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    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #19
    Could you not do that same thing with a remote disk at a friends house using the free Crashplan mentioned above?

    To avoid overwhelming your and your friends internet account, put the "remote drive" on your local network for the initial large backup, then transport the drive to the remote location and do subsequent incremental backups over the internet.

    In the event that you need to restore everything ... retrieve the disk from the remote location and mount it locally for your restore/rebuild.


    -howard
     
  20. Windowsrefugee, Aug 14, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2012

    Windowsrefugee macrumors regular

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    #20
    I have been happily using CrashPlan now for over a year with no problems or freezing noted by another poster. One of the best features is that one can back up to a computer or better yet the external HDD attached to that computer belonging to friend or relative across town (or across country) for FREE. I use this feature in addition to backing up locally via CP (and TM on a separate drive). In addition, I back up all 3 computers in the house to CP central for a nominal monthly fee for up unlimited data for up to 10 computers (I don't have that many).

    For cross-town back up, the original HDD back up can be done locally (with drive attached to one's computer) and then just moved to computer across town, saving a LOT of time for the original back up. This can be done With VP central for a large extra fee, so I just set up local and cross-town backups first and waited the 10 days for CP Central back up to catch up.

    Suggest you check out CP-- it is very versatile and very affordable ( even FREE if you do not use CP Central). One can even retrieve files remotely on one's iPad, smart phone or another computer. I just wish I had chosen a higher level of encryption before my first back up :(

    I have also thought about CC Cloner to make a bootable drive which neither CP nor TM support. Maybe this is overkill, but it would be nice to have a bootable drive. What do others think?
     
  21. driftless macrumors demi-god

    driftless

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    #21
    Since I seem to be the only person who has had problems with CrashPlan :confused: you should take my original post with a grain a salt. Maybe I will try again after talking to the CP IT folks as I really wanted CP to work .............
     
  22. Windowsrefugee macrumors regular

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    #22
    BTW, I have found CP technical support MOST HELPUL, responsive, patient and easy to get thru to-- at least as good as Apple. They seem to all be based in MN and are very helpful, friendly Mid-Westerners. And no, this is not a paid ad, just a satisfied (but normally difficult to please) customer.
     
  23. comatory macrumors 6502a

    comatory

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    Apr 10, 2012
    #23
    Interesting topic because I'm currently looking for off-site backup solution. Just today I started using Crashplan+ (and yeah it looks like it's gonna backup for at least 4 days).

    I have Time Capsule w/TM setup as a main backup solution - this backs up system and most of the personal data.

    I run CCC every month to create bootable drive of my OS drive (it's a shame it cannot clone external drives to the same drive as well).

    Those two are on-site. I wish I could rotate physical disks to some remote place but I don't have any storage/deposit box to put them in.

    So that means my off-site solution is CrashPlan+ now. I chose not to backup my OS drive and just put some important data in there - most notably my personal videos which are usually M2T files so they have the best quality. I don't want to shove them onto timemachine (waste of space). I also backup my iPhoto library there, my iTunes library is already in the cloud (iTunes match), plus I've put some other documents there as well.

    My most important stuff is in Evernote or 1Password (syncing with Dropbox) anyway.

    I don't know if CrashPlan is the best solution for me, sure it's cheap but I'd much prefer something like big Dropbox and that gets expensive if you want loads of GBs (I'd utilize 100-200 GB probably).

    Anyone ever tried Amazon Web Services? Do they offer some syncing program as well?
    Maybe CCCing my OS drive+external drive with iPhoto library and encrypting it would be the best - then move it onto AWS.
     
  24. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603

    GimmeSlack12

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    Apr 29, 2005
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    San Francisco
    #24
    I just started using Crashplan. Takes quite a while for that initial backup to finish, but after that I hardly even notice it. The price for 3 years on Crashplan is about the same as a 2Tb drive, yet Crashplan is unlimited. That convinced me to go that route.

    Beats having Time Machine running all the time.
     
  25. WesCole thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    I am trying Crashplan right now. Says it will take almost 50 days to back up my 730GB of data. So far, I am impressed with the ease of use. I did an initial small backup and restore and it worked well. I think I will keep the service once my trial is up since I can't stand the thought of losing my family photos, movies, and other important documents. Once this initial download is done, it shouldn't take long for the incremental backups. I actually included my Windows 7 VM in this backup, but will probably only back it up once every two months or so since it doesn't change that much because I only use it for VB programming, but it beats having to reinstall all my software and settings from scratch in the event something happens.
     

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