Manually backing up properly

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Shoot, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. Shoot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2008
    #1
    Hey all,

    I'd love some help if any of you can spare the time, essentially I need to back up all of my data- I don't want to use an automated tool like Time Machine, I just want to stick all my stuff on an external drive so I can retrieve it after formatting.

    What I've done so far is simply make a copy of my home folder on the external drive and I've also separately exported all of my contacts and stuff from their relevant apps and put them in there too.

    My main worry is that I'll be hit in the face with some sort of permissions or authorisation errors when i copy this stuff back after formatting.

    What to do?

    Thanks,

    Shoot.
     
  2. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #2
    Can't See A problem

    I used the same system when migrating my files. One word of caution though: When you copy them back, DON"T try to drag the whole folder across, instead open it and then select all the files you want to move and THEN copy them across.

    Trying to copy the folderol top of the new one will cause duplication at best, and problems at worse.:)
     
  3. farmermac macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Location:
    Iowa
    #3
    Ccc cloning is best backup possible

    All you need is the home folder and application folder really if you're intent on doing it by hand
     
  4. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #4
    If you have worries then use Time Machine, Apple's (free) Backup application, Carbon Copy Cloner, Super Duper or other software. Unless you are just copyig a few files and don't care about settings, prefs, permissions, etc etc the manual method is a very poor choice.

    I'd start with Backup; every recent Mac has it and it's very easy to use.

    Rob
     
  5. Shoot thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2008
    #5
    well i literally do not want my settings and prefs and stuff, all i want are my docs, pics, contacts etc. i want a clean slate os as this has all sorts of software installed that i do not need.
     
  6. CaptMurdock macrumors 6502a

    CaptMurdock

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Location:
    The Evildrome Boozerama
    #6
    Okay, then...

    1. Copy your Documents, Pictures, Movies and Music folders as necessary;
    2. Export backup files for your contacts and calendar apps (e.g. Address Book, iCal, Entourage, etc) and copy that across;
    3. If you have a mail client and don't keep copies of email on the server, back up the messages in a separate "Read" folder and copy that across;
    4. Export the bookmarks/favorites from your browser. I know those aren't irreplaceable but I find it necessary. YMMV.
    5. Make sure you have installers for all your applications. If it's shareware you downloaded from the web, make a folder called Disk Images or something like that for .dmg files.
    That's all the advice I can think of now. Oh, and get a utility like DiskTracker or something similar to keep track of where you backed up files. Nothing like trying to search through two dozen DVD-ROMs going "Where the hell did I put that???"
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    "I'd love some help if any of you can spare the time, essentially I need to back up all of my data- I don't want to use an automated tool like Time Machine, I just want to stick all my stuff on an external drive so I can retrieve it after formatting."

    Why don't you use CarbonCopyCloner?

    That is a "manual" (i.e., you "tell it" to run) app that will create an exact "clone" of your main drive to another drive, and it will be fully bootable and finder-accessible.

    Very easy to use and quite powerful, as well.

    It's hands-down one of the best pieces of Mac software available today.

    And it's free:
    http://bombich.com
     

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