SuperDuper v Carbon Copy Cloner v Time Machine v ... erm, help?!

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by duncyboy, May 19, 2008.

  1. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #1
    H'lo :)

    Will be buying a USB2 caddy for an old 200GB HDD next week. I'm going to use 100GB of it for back-up and was wondering what back-up/sync software people on here use?

    It's not going to be for a full disk-image back-up. It's going to be for about a dozen specific folders (e.g. iTunes Music) and Time Machine doesn't seem to fit the bill?

    What do people here use? What would you recommend?

    I want to be able to set which folders it backs up, which it doesn't and in future just click one button and it'll make sure all my precious files are copied. Also, I'd like flexible options for what it backs up: e.g. I want to back-up all my mp3's in the iTunes Music folder but would like to exclude the Movies folder as it's too large?

    Any advice, recommendations or experiences appreciated.

    Thanks muchly :)
     
  2. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #2
    I think SuperDuper is the ticket for you.

    IMO, the ultimate BU strategy is running SuperDuper AND Time Machine (TM). SuperDuper for a bootable solution ....and Time Machine for restoring a file from several iterations, etc. TM is also good for restoring the entire HD....just not bootable.

    http://www.itwire.com/content/view/16487/1151/
     
  3. spaceballl macrumors 68030

    spaceballl

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #3
    Well, let me start off by just giving a general recommendation for Time Machine. It's really simple. Just plug in an external drive, and it works. My girlfriend's hard drive died this past sunday, but she had time machine. She got her machine back from the Apple store and reinstalled leopard. Right of the bat, it asked her if she wanted to restore from a time machine backup, she clicked yes - and done. it was restored, just as she left it.

    That being said, it sounds like you just want to put some folders on an external drive, and make sure that the contents get synchronized, right?

    I'd recommend that you buy a drive significantly larger than your current drive. Then give it two partitions. Set time machine to use one of the partitions, and on the other one, just copy over the folders you want and then use a folder synchronizing utility to make sure that the contents stay in sync. That will give you the time machine backup for easy, thoughtless backup, and easy restore. And then you'll also have raw copies of any specific folders you like.
     
  4. mgsarch macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #4
    Honestly, these are not substitutes. As jaduffy suggested, having a bootable copy of your system is very nice and (to me) imperative. If my system breaks, I want to be able to boot it elsewhere if necessary without dealing with a time machine restore. Time machine is nice and it's great to be able to have that luxury of recovering from mistakes (deleted, corrupted, etc.).

    If you have sensitive data you should really have some sort of off-site backup. I've been using Mozy for a while and I love it. It's basically remote time machine and it's very affordable ($50 a year with the coupons you can find everywhere, if you PM me I'll give you my referral code and I'll paypal you half the bonus which I think is something like $15 so you can cut down the cost even more .. and mine! haha. They're backed by EMC and I've had the good luck (bad luck?) of actually executing a full restore from their server. They also encrypt your data. I don't know, can't really beat it other than it's not bootable and not as fast, you'll never lose your data though. Mozy is incremental just like time machine. There's no limit on the data and my boot camp partitions show up (2 windows drives do but Solaris drive does not, maybe if I loaded filesystem drivers it would).

    At the end of the day, Time Machine and bootable copies are hardware too. Although unlikely, they can all break at once. I'm a designer and for the first time ever I feel like my data is actually safe. It's really good feeling. :)

    p.s.
    Coupon for Mozy is 'MAY' (1year) or 'MAY2' (2year), that will get you 10 or 15% off, I can't remember.

    p.p.s.
    time machine and bootable copy on the same drive (unless there was another backup method) would scare me. but, my data cannot be replaced (photo, art, etc) so I might be a little more paranoid and for ~$50 it's a nobrainer.

    p.p.p.s. (omg ..)
    Make sure you really need the functionality of the paid version of SuperDuper. CCC is donationware and rock-solid, I'd rather support developers like Mike Bombich who support our platform by providing great apps without any greed. I would like to support him even more if he opened the source and helped drive additional dev. :)
     
  5. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #5
    Mozy...me too. How can you lose at $50 per year? Offsite BU...now we're talking. It's the BU to my BU. :)
     
  6. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #6
    Thanks for all the replies but none of the above really seems what I'm after. Maybe I should've been clearer in my original post.

    Thanks anyway and I'll do some more research :)
     
  7. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2004
    Location:
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    #7
    Apple's Backup 3.0 is exactly what you're looking for from a functionality perspective. You do need to be a .Mac member, though, to get it from Apple.

    I'm pretty sure you could also set up an Automator action to cover your need.
     
  8. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #8
    I had considered a .Mac subscription and it's something I may consider.

    I've been reading about iBackup and that seems to do the trick. I s'pose the best thing is when I've got the external HDD set up I can try different programs then- proof is in the eating and all that guff! :D
     
  9. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #9
    I've re-read your original post, and I am pretty sure that SuperDuper! can do what you want. You can script it to sync only specific folders and (I think) certain file types. It's also very reliable and the support is good. Try it!

    Or, since HD space is pretty darn cheap these days, just get a bigger drive, partition in two and use one for SuperDuper, and the other for Time Machine. It really is the ultimate backup solution (although you should get some off-site backup too).

    SL
     
  10. jaduffy108 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #10
    Amen. The above is a *real* BU strategy.
     
  11. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #11
    Thanks for the reply. It's always been at the back of my mind to buy, as you said, a really big drive to hold everything. Never really considered offsite back-up but my have a look into it.

    I'll be getting the caddy next week so I'll try the above. Thanks for the replies everyone- it's greatly appreciated.

    My really precious files- family pictures and such- I put on a USB drive and gave to my sister and she did likewise- we're each others back up strategy :D
     
  12. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #12
    With some creative googling you may find this write up someone did on a few software programs such as SD and CC. I believe it was generally stated that CC is not adequate in terms of what it backs up and doesn't include meta tags. I could have that backwards so you may want to check it out. If you work with a lot of photos and you use meta tags at all then you'll want one over the other and price shouldn't be a concern.

    Does Time Machine back up all files including metadata?
     
  13. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #13
    My memory of CCC is that I had to muck about in the command line (lots of sudo and cron) to get it to work, and even then the backups usually weren't bootable.

    But I've not tried it for a while. Maybe they've fixed it now. But SD means I don't have to try anything else.

    SL
     
  14. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #14
    Not sure if this is the article you were referring to but it does make for interesting reading: http://blog.plasticsfuture.org/2006/03/05/the-state-of-backup-and-cloning-tools-under-mac-os-x/

    Thanks for pointing that out- that would be a major deciding factor in whichever solution I choose. It took me a long time to get my iTunes tags right and having them ruined by poor software just wouldn't be acceptable.
     
  15. superleccy macrumors 6502a

    superleccy

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2004
    Location:
    That there big London
    #15
    That article predates Leopard by over a year. I don't think your iTunes tags are at risk. Stop worrying.

    If Time Machine and Super Duper can't back up your hard drive accurately between them, then nothing can.

    The Leopard release for Super Duper was considerably delayed whilst the developer got it exactly right. He's a perfectionist.

    SL
     
  16. Elsmar macrumors member

    Elsmar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    West Chester, Ohio, USA
    #16
    I'm new here, but a Mac person going back to 1986. I just got a new iMac. My old one was 4 years old - an old G5. I've been searching / researching backup solutions (which is how I ended up here through a Google search) because of the Time Machine aspect I now have available. I have some web sites and I work from home. In short, I have data backups on CD going back to the 1980's. I have to keep backups. I have 12 250 to 300 gig drives which I have archived important data on (cheaper and faster than DVD these days) and keep the drives in a container in a climate controlled room.

    I have used CCC for quite a while now. I used it because I wanted a BOOTABLE backup. I will 'admit' that I have no use for sequential backups, but I know CCC will do them. When I change significant files during the day I copy them (Drag and Drop the folder on the drive) to a backup drive meant for sequential archiving of data files (these are the drives I fill up and put in my drive storage container).

    In the several years or so that I have used CCC, I have never had a failure of the backup to boot on firewire to a backup computer, and I check at least every other time I back up. I did have a computer failure (not a drive failure - motherboard failure) a while back and CCC saved my butt. All I had to do was plug my firewire backup drive into my backup Mac, boot from it and I was where I was the night before. No time spent copying files or anything. Plug firewire drive into my backup computer, boot from that drive and there I am. Ready to go in a minute.

    The interface is graphical - I haven't had to deal with sudo and/or cron. I'm OK using the CLI in terminal or on any unix/bds machine, but I've never seen that involved in CCC - Maybe you can do some stuff there that I haven't even looked at.

    I can't speak to SuperDuper - Haven't used it. And after reading about Time Machine, it's more than I personally need. I use CCC to back up a 1 terabyte drive once every 24 hours.

    From what I'm reading, for most Mac users I think Time Machine is the appropriate program. What you use depends upon your specific needs.

    I would try Time Machine, but I have about 310 gigs of 'stuff' on my backup drive in addition to the about 450 gigs from CCC backing up my new iMac 1TB internal drive. I don't want to have to partition it and I don't want to buy another drive to dedicate to Time machine. My 'system' works pretty well for me. Your mileage may vary, as one would expect, in accordance with your individual needs.
     

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