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OS X - Apps and Games Discussion of applications and games available for Mac OS X.

Backup software recommendation?


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PlainSpoken

 
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Can anyone recommend a good backup program? I'd prefer one that could backup the system state and would work with a travan tape drive and/or USB flash sticks. A free/open-source app would be great, though I could see go w/ a commercial solution.

It would have to run on 10.3.

Thank you.
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PlainSpoken

 
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Thanks for the reply. I will check out the trial version, though it says it does not work with tape drives.
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As much as I appreciate and respect people's storage choices, I'm burning to know why you still keep tape drives :-).

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PlainSpoken

 
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Well, it is not the only backup device or method I use. At work and at home, I have to take of PCs, a Mac and Sun boxes. Travan tape works and works well in almost all those environments. It is fast, reliable, reusable and has enough capacity to do unattended backups.

Backup to HD is great, but they just recently got to the size where they work for off-site storage. Our primary backup scheme will be switching to that later this month. DVD-RW is great too, but is a pain if you have to span disks. The media wears out quickly too. Internet backup is becoming more common, but it takes time, even with broadband.

As to this specific question, there is only one Mac I use. It has no external storage, so I thought I'd try one of the Travan drives on it. If not, I will see if I can put one of the DVD-RW drives from a PC on it & backup there.

Probably more than you wanted to know. Tape is indeed looking pretty outdated, but for some operations, it still works fine.
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Do you really need *any* specific backup software? I have always done backups the "cheap and cheerful" way. It is even easier with Macs than it was on my PC.

I get an external hard drive. To back up, I plug it in, turn it on and then create a new folder in its root called todays_date_backup. Then I simply use Finder (or PathFinder in my case) to drag my home folder into my newly created backup folder. This copies ALL of my personal data. It does not create a full blown image of my current disk, but I tend to view the system setup as transient. It is my personal stuff (music, photos, files, etc.) that I want to keep.

To make this really useful, I use a system of two hard drives, which I rotate between work and home. Each time I do a backup, I take the hard drive with the fresh backup to work and exchange it with the one there. That way, I always have two full backups at two different locations. Hence, even if some terrible disaster should befall my house (tornado, flood, fire, whatever), I still have a full backup "off site".

Note that no incremental backup software is involved or needed. Hard drives are so big and so fast these days that this works great and it is so simple. It has always been my philosophy that in order to be done regularly, backing up must be easy. Apple clearly agrees with me - I think that this is the whole premise behind Time Machine (... a FAR more elegant solution than what I do of course!).

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PlainSpoken

 
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In the PC world, for anything mission critical, you absolutely, positively need a good backup solution. In my work life, all of our mission-critical data is backed up every single day. Loosing a days worth of data would be a disaster. Ditto on big-iron.

Now on the Mac, I have no idea. The last time I used Macs in any official capacity was some typesetting in the pre-System 7 days. I know, I just dated myself. Maybe a simple file copy would do it.

Thanks for your reply.
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