Low cost HDD backup solution for two macs and external drives?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by james*b, Nov 14, 2014.

  1. james*b macrumors regular

    Jan 2, 2011

    I have a mac mini and macbook pro, as well as a Lacie 2Big Quadra USB 3.0 drive I intend to use for backup. I am not interested in keeping a lot of versions but just a single copy in case a hard drive fails etc. I also run a couple of external thunderbolt and usb drives that I would like to backup regularly as well.

    I downloaded Intego Backup Assistant as this came with the Lacie drive - however the free version will not backup my external drives.

    Can anyone recommend a low-cost or free piece of software that can do the job?
    I don't need or want endless versions as with time-machine - I just need a single copy of each drive in case a mechanical drive error occurs.

    Thanks in advance for your help,
  2. 8281 macrumors 6502

    Dec 15, 2010
    It sort of sounds like you might want to ditch the externals and move everything over to a networked RAID 1 setup. You could save everything on your externals now to the new RAID and set the RAID disk as the target for the mac backup.

    I bought an ioSafe for our office and it works great. 3TB of storage (up to 4 TB on a single disk).


    It's not cheap, but it would consolidate all your drives and RAID1 will be more reliable than any backup software solution.
  3. jdphoto macrumors 6502


    Jan 13, 2014
    I'm assuming you'll be hooking the Lacie that you want to dump all the backups to, to the Mac Mini? For getting files from the Macbook Pro to the external I'd use BTSync (BitTorrent Sync http://www.getsync.com/download). It's a free way to sync files between machines (it's totally legal). You could set it up to sync your files from the laptop to that external on the mini.

    For backup up the other external drives/the mac mini internal, Carbon Copy Cloner would work as would SuperDuper (which is actually cheaper than CCC).
  4. glenthompson macrumors 68000


    Apr 27, 2011
    The cheapest solution is the one built into the OS, time machine in this case. My recommendation is to add the server component to the mini and configure the Lacie as a backup destination. You can configure it to limit th amount of space and TM will automatically prune your backups. Unless you have a lot of volitave data it doesn't use a lot of space.

    Raid 1 isn't a good solution for backup since it only protects against a drive failure. Better to put the money into a second enclosure for a separate backup.
  5. james*b thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 2, 2011
    Backup app that will backup external hard drives?

    So basically can anyone recommend a backup app that will backup internal and external hard drives?
  6. cube, Nov 15, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2014

    cube macrumors Pentium

    May 10, 2004
    Retrospect Desktop comes with 1 server and 5 client licenses, so it is enough to backup 5 computers (Mac, Windows, and Linux), and an unlimited number of external drives. But if you want to backup several drives at the same time, you need a more expensive version. You can however, buy more client licenses to backup additional computers.

    You can configure how many versions of a file to keep before recycling the space.

    The last major version can also do block-level incremental backup (so, if you have a 200GB file that was modified for example, only the parts that changed get saved). You can configure how many times a file can be backuped this way until the next full one, and the minimum size for it to be treated this way instead of always full.

    It has always been able to do normal incremental backups.

    The Desktop version can also backup to tape. That is why I bought it originally.

    It not only can backup directly attached, but also network drives, like one connected to an Airport Extreme.

    The deduplication feature is very important, it does not save multiple copies of the exact same file if you have it in several places.

    It can also try to backup laptops when they get connected to the network.

    It has a lot of stuff.

    A shortcoming is that to backup VMware as a machine, instead of a file, only the Windows server version supports it. Also that the dissimilar hardware restore option is only for Windows.
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
  8. ItWasNotMe macrumors 6502

    Dec 1, 2012
    RAID is NOT a backup solution; you accidentally or otherwise delete the file and its gone. From ALL the drives. Period.

    What RAID will do is protect you from some hardware failures.
  9. 8281 macrumors 6502

    Dec 15, 2010
    Yes, and that's why I mentioned it because it's a more robust solution than running a cheap external hard drive with a single HDD.

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