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  1. #1
    cloning hard drive
    Good afternoon --

    Looking for a recommendation for a piece of software that will completely copy my hard drive, a mirror image, not time machine.

    Using OS Sierra, 10.12.6.

    Thanks,

    bmahin

  2. #2
    cloning hard drive

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmahin View Post
    Good afternoon --

    Looking for a recommendation for a piece of software that will completely copy my hard drive, a mirror image, not time machine.

    Using OS Sierra, 10.12.6.

    Thanks,

    bmahin
    I use and would recommend Carbon Copy Cloner. Unless you intend to use it regularly, the trial period will do what you want.
    Steve
    UK

  3. #3
    cloning hard drive
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    +1 for CCC. Use it every day as part of my backup routine.
    Jake

  4. #4
    cloning hard drive
    IWT's Avatar
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    +1 for Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC). Although for complicated historical reasons, I also have the other main contender, SuperDuper! (SD!)

    Both offer trial periods, as stated.

    The URLs for these are:

    Mac Backup Software | Carbon Copy Cloner | Bombich Software
    SuperDuper!

    Ian
    Ian

  5. #5
    cloning hard drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    I've used both the programs recommended thus far and settled on Caron Copy Cloner because it copies the macOS recovery partition. The last time I used it SuperDuper did not clone the recovery partition. Of course there are those that think cloning the recovery partition is needed since the entire cloned drive becomes a means of recovery.

    My suggestion would be to check out both programs to see which one makes the most sense to you. In other words which program are you most comfortable using because if you're not comfortable with it you won't use it.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

  6. #6
    cloning hard drive
    chscag's Avatar
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    What hasn't been mentioned regarding Carbon Copy Cloner is that it also offers a "Safety Net" option which archives files that have been deleted. I use that feature since it's a bit easier and faster than Time Machine when you need to recover a single or several files. It should be noted though that the Safety Net feature is limited to available drive space. My recommendation is to use both CCC and Time Machine.

  7. #7
    cloning hard drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    Good point Charlie. I didn't think to mention that.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

  8. #8
    cloning hard drive
    pm-r's Avatar
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    If you just want an exact Mirror Image identical copy including every single bit and byte, then the OS's included Disk Utility.app is more than capable:
    HOW TO › MACS
    Use Disk Utility to Clone a Mac's Drive
    Disk Utility's Restore Function Lets you Create a Bootable Clone

    Use Disk Utility to Clone a Mac's Drive

    Note:
    Re: CCC backup:
    Some files and folders are automatically excluded from a backup task...
    Carbon Copy Cloner maintains a list of certain files and folders that are automatically excluded from a backup task. The contents of this list were determined based on Apple recommendations and years of experience. The following is a list of the items that are excluded ...
    Some files and folders are automatically excluded from a backup task | Carbon Copy Cloner | Bombich Software


    Disk Utility.app will include everything. So the method chosen can depend on what you want exactly.



    - Patrick
    ======
    Last edited by pm-r; 08-04-2019 at 07:50 PM.

  9. #9
    cloning hard drive
    MacInWin's Avatar
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    I read both of those articles and the net effect is just about the same. The list of things CCC excludes includes files that are constantly being changed by the system on the boot drive and which it makes no sense to clone as they are created/recreated at boot. The write up for the Disk Utility approach gets to the same result by requiring you to boot from an external source, or the Recovery partition, to clone the boot drive. In that case the volatile files are all eliminated from the original boot drive already because it's no longer the boot drive. As the final paragraph at Lifewire says:
    Why Use Disk Utility’s Restore Function?
    You may have noticed over the years that I've recommended cloning apps, such as Carbon Copy Cloner and SuperDuper, for creating bootable clones as part of a backup system.

    So if cloning apps are better, why use Disk Utility instead? The reasons can be many, not the least of which are the simple facts that Disk Utility is free, and included with every copy of the Mac OS. And while the various cloning apps have a lot more features, if you don’t have access to the third-party apps, using Disk Utility will create a perfectly usable clone, although it may require a few more steps and lacks some nice features, such as automation and scheduling.
    Although the author refers to "many" reasons, the article gives ONE--cost. If the clones were significantly different, I'm pretty sure it would have been mentioned somewhere.
    Jake

  10. #10
    cloning hard drive
    RavingMac's Avatar
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    Another satisfied Carbon Copy Cloner user here . . .
    I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .

  11. #11
    cloning hard drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    @Jake Thanks for clearing up the reason that some files are not cloned by Carbon Copy Cloner. I have used Disk Utility to clone a drive and gotten it to work. I still prefer using dedicated cloning software such as Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper because it is a more flexible approach as one becomes more familiar with the features.

    Here are two tasks that I routinely use Carbon Copy Cloner for that I don't think Disk Utility handles well:

    1. We've focussed on cloning the boot drive in this thread and that why I tried it initially, but I think it really shines when cloning other drives. The initial clone copies all files except those mentioned earlier in the thread. On subsequent cloning runs only files which have changed are rewritten. These incremental clones occur much faster than the initial clone. That comes in handy if you routinely make backups of things like your media drive.

    2. When I'm not cloning my boot drive there are some files that I routinely exclude. Typically these are files that I have known good copies of elsewhere or can easily re-download from the internet.

    Other software also has this feature. I don't remember for sure but you may have to have the pad version to use the incremental backup/clone feature.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

  12. #12
    TO: techiesteve, MacInWin, IWT, Slydude, chscag, pm-r and , RavingMac

    Thank you.

    Downloaded and ran Carbon Copy. So far, it seems to be everything I'd hoped for.

    So, again, thanks to all of you.

    bmahin

  13. #13
    cloning hard drive
    Slydude's Avatar
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    Great. Glad we could help.
    “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”
    Kevin Durant

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