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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

Reliable backup: Raid or Time machine


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john.stone

 
Member Since: Nov 22, 2010
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Hi,

I've a G5 1.8 that I'm putting together to use for my music, likely Tunes with Pure Music. To that end, Ive maxed the RAM to 8gb, installed a Velociraptor 300gb disk for the system and programmes and have installed a Sonnet G5 Jive, Tempo Sata X4i card and two WD 2TB Caviar blacks for the media.

What I'd like some help with is the question of how best to set this up for backups, using the two 2TB disk's to back up each other. Should I set them up to be a mirrored raid, some other form of raid or have Time Machine do it? Do any of these set ups affect the performance greatly too?
Any advice would be a real help.

All the best, John
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XJ-linux

 
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Mirrored RAID is safest. Speed shouldn't be an issue with Velociraptors. Time machine really just makes sure you have a very recent backup on hand, and keeps incremental backups organized as well. It doesn't protect from hardware (disk drive) failure. You might be able to set up time machine to actually use the RAID of 2 x 2TB drives, but I'm not sure if TM will allow one to backup to internal drives. Someone can chime in on that one I'm sure. Maybe you just can't back up to the boot drive? Anyhow, if TM didn't like the internal RAID, you could try Carbon Copy Cloner or Superduper. Both are pretty easy to set up incremental backups and a wide variety of other things that TM doesn't really do.
Still, my personal choice would be a RAID any day of the week.

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john.stone

 
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Thanks, I had always though that a mirrored RAID was best for data protection but came across a post on another forum that said mirrors make poor back ups. It had me doubting what was best. The last thing I want to do is rip a whole load of CD's and lose them, hence the second disk and the question here.
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Chilbear

 
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My thoughts are from experiences. RAIDs are always better. A software RAID is worse than a hardware RAID (software mirror is what you read I believe). I do not believe that an internal drive system is a "good" backup strategy. It is file storage at best. An external drive using TM or CCC is best as a backup. Your largest dilemma is how to backup up such a large internal system. You will need more RAIDed drives spinning the cost even more.

My last thought is the system you are building around. The G5 line though solid in it's days is long in the tooth. One thing missing from your list is a solid battery backup system that will give clean power to the G5 giving it the best chance of "longer" life. Certainly another identical G5 at least for parts also makes good sense.
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technologist

 
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RAID is not a backup solution. RAID provides protection against disk failure only.

Backups protect against data loss from bad software and user mistakes. By all means, use RAID, but back up using Time Machine or something else as well.
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john.stone

 
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Ok, I'm a bit confused now, I'm not sure why external would be better than internal for the back up disks, can someone let me know why?
If I use each of the 'spare' disks in each pair I have as a backup, would TM be the easiest way to do this?
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Because you want your backup to be physically removed from your actual machine that you use on a regular basis. That's the point of a backup.

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When it comes to media files such as pictures and music, I actually do my own backups, copy the files over to a separate hard drive myself. Even though it takes a bit longer, I know what I'm doing with my files, and can keep them in my own files, instead of having them go into time machine. I have 1 WD caviar 500gb external 3.5" that I use for media(pics/movies/songs/etc), 1 seagate barracuda 500gb external 3.5" that I have partitioned as a backup(time machine) for my macbook pro/powermac g5. Then I have 1 hitachi 250gb external 2.5" drives for iso images of all applications, along with another identical drive for keeping ONLY pictures and videos. Then I have a 160gb seagate 2.5" external for only music.

That's my version of redundancy! It only take one hard drive failure to change the way you protect your stuff! Especially when you are forced to pay 900 dollars to pull files from a dead drive, and that was only after pleading for mercy!

“If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself but to your own estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.” Marcus Aurelius
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