New MacBook, how do I back it up?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by supermarvin76, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. supermarvin76 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    #1
    I have recently purchased a 15" MacBook Pro, and I would like to know how to back it up. This morning i went out and bought this: http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/products/external/freeagent/portable-hard-drive/

    I have transfered all of my photos into iPhoto. This is probably my main concern for backing up data. Previously, with my former PC I organized my photos with a folder system I devised. Anyhow, I have not plugged the external drive in yet. I will only be using this drive with my Mac. I plan to keep this hard drive off site, and use it to back up once a month or so. My questions are as follows:

    1. The directions on the Sea Gate drive state that there is software I will need to install. Will I actually need to install that if I plan to use Time Machine?

    2. I never having used Time Machine, is it fairly self explanatory?

    3. Will Time Machine back up my photos out of iPhoto? Will it retain the organization in iPhoto?

    4. When I deem it is time to do a back up, I plug the external drive in, is there anything I will need to do to make the back up begin?

    5. Because I am a fairly paranoid person, after a backup, can I see all of my files in the external drive?

    6. Is there anything else I should know about backup?

    Thank you very much!
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

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    located
    #2
  3. Laurencia7 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2009
    #3
    Welcome to the Mac world!

    It's great so much easier on the mind than PC.
    Now I think all your questions were answered.
    Time Machine is great, just watch some tutorials on how to use it, and how to view your files. I don't use iPhoto to store my images, I still have a folder system that way I know exactly how to find them and organize by date or event.

    If you have any other questions just write us here, these guys are great.
    Time Machines basics:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RDPzVdohrck
     
  4. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #4
    If you are new to iPhoto and want to retain your existing folder structure, make sure you untick "copy items" in preferences > advanced, before you start importing.

    You may also wish to check out Picasa (free) and Photoshop Elements (not free) as alternatives that may be happier working with a user decided folder structure
     
  5. supermarvin76 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    #5
    I have heard that iPhoto is basically a 'front' to all of my photos. The way that I understand that is the photos are not actually in iPhoto. Does that mean that the folders that I previously had all of my photos organized with is some where on my Mac? If so, how do I find them?

    Thanks again everyone!
     
  6. MacTribe macrumors member

    MacTribe

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #6
    iPhoto has a database store, all your photos are organised in the application, the physical store is found in your home folder / pictures - its called 'iPhoto Library'

    If you right click on the iphoto library and click 'show package contents', you'll see all the folders as organised by the application. (dont change anything!)

    As for backup solutions, also check out Carbon Copy Cloner and Crashplan as alternatives to Time Machine.

    Enjoy your Mac!
     
  7. Tumbleweed666, Jan 30, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2011

    Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

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    #7
    iPhoto has two ways of operating.
    In "default" mode, it sucks all your pictures in and creates its own hidden folder structure, which you mess with at your peril. Pictures "live" in "events" which do not correspond to its internal folder structure. In this case what you understand is most definitely wrong because its where all your pictures live, there is one very large "package" (which is a sort of hidden folder structure) where it all is.

    However, if you untick "copy to..", as per my previous post, then it uses your folder structure.
    I'm presuming, though I haven't used it in this mode so I dont know for sure, that in that case, Event name = Folder name. All you would have in iPhoto then, is the thumbnails, faces, geo location stuff, and also, probably, the original version of any changed pictures ( iPhoto keeps the original if you edit a photo so you can always revert). More of a "front" but still a heck of a lot in iPhoto.

    The difficult with the latter is you can get out of step,. Imagine you start deleting and changing some pictures in folders directly (and not through iPhoto). Now thumbnails point to non-existent photos, other photos appear for which there is no thumbnail (I presume it discovers these), some edited photos dont have an original, faces point to a picture thats no longer there, etc.

    If I wanted to keep my own structure, for which I can see some benefits, I'd use something that was basically designed to work that way, in my case Picasa if I was happy to do basic editing, or PSE for more complex editing, though I'm sure there are many other choices out there, they are the two I am most familiar with.
     
  8. supermarvin76 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    #8
    I have two more questions (at least that's all I can think of for now).

    1. How do I load files from iPhoto into my DropBox?

    2. I have heard there is no anti-virus, maleware, or other type of protective software I need to install. Is this correct? If not, what would be recommend?
     
  9. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #9
    1. Does Dropbox have help? Have you tried? In general I'd have just thought you select the event or photos you want? Look in the sidebar under media if there is a "finder type" window that opens. But I've never used it.I would just have a play with a few photos and come back if you have a problem.

    2. There are no viruses, there is some malware (not much ) which you'll only get if you browse dodgy sites. I see no point installing protective software because with the malware you still need to type a password to run it, and if some malware comes out that isnt recognized by the protective software (very likely) then you'll be giving yourself a false sense of security by letting that tell you what is OK and what isn't. If you aren't expecting something to pop up and say "type password to run" then dont type it whatever a malware checker says , hence no point using one for the handful out there.
     
  10. supermarvin76 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    #10
    I have now backed up everything on my external drive with Time Machine. The only question I have now is this:

    When I look at my iPhoto library in Time Machine, I can click on it and it gives me options. One of the options is "open". When I click open, all it does is pop open a window which states "-- KB". That's it.

    Should I be able to view the photos or how does that work?
     
  11. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #11
    "I have now backed up everything on my external drive with Time Machine. The only question I have now is this:
    When I look at my iPhoto library in Time Machine, I can click on it and it gives me options. One of the options is "open". When I click open, all it does is pop open a window which states "-- KB". That's it.
    Should I be able to view the photos or how does that work?"

    Suggestion:

    DON'T USE TIME MACHINE.

    It makes backup "look easy" but too many people have trouble when -- in a moment of extreme need -- they reach for their TM backups and find..... they don't work.

    Instead, download the FREE app called CarbonCopyCloner:
    http://www.bombich.com/

    Then use it to do a "clone" of your internal hard drive. Once done, CCC will update that backup using "incremental backups" that take much less time. You can even set it up so that "changed files" are archived, instead of being deleted from the backup.

    A CCC backup is an exact copy of your internal drive, is in "Plain Old Finder Format" (you just open the backup and copy what you need from it), and it's BOOTABLE. You can't boot from a TM backup in a moment of need.

    If you have room on the external drive, you can partition it. Then, use one partition for a CCC cloned backup, and you can still use the other for TM if you wish.

    But again -- when the time comes when you have a disaster and you need to reach for a backup THAT WORKS and can save your bacon -- you will be better served by a "cloned, bootable backup" from CCC (or SuperDuper), than you will be by a TM backup.

    Just my opinion. Others may differ.
     
  12. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #12
    Indeed. How do you know this ( "many people") ?
    I suspect the issue with some who use CCC or similar is they say "oh %&**% I forget to backup for the last 3 months". TM doesn't forget.

    The best backup solution in the world is no use if you didn't take one.
     
  13. supermarvin76 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Location:
    Northern Illinois
    #13
    I have another external drive that I might use for CCC. But, it has data on it from a PC that I need to retain on that drive. Would I be able to use that external drive for CCC and keep that data from the PC on it?
     

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