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[edit] Backup (disambiguation)

Backup is also the name of Apple's .Mac backup utility. It can be used without a .Mac account.

[edit] Dantz Retrospect

Retrospect is the granddaddy of Mac backup software; there are options ranging from personal backup to enterprise solutions. But many feel that the price escalates a bit quickly to get necessary options for serious home office backup.

[edit] Carbon Copy Cloner

CCC is perhaps the best-known GUI tool for backing up a hard drive to a secondary drive or disk image. Its primary limitation is that you can only exclude directories at the root level; otherwise, this is an excellent backup tool.

In its simplest form, CCC will clone one hard drive to another, copying every single block or file to create an exact replica of your source hard drive. This is very useful if, for example, your laptop is damaged and you must send it in for repair.

[edit] rsync and RsyncX

Another free tool worth mentioning is RsyncX, which exposes all the swiss-army-knife backup goodness of rsync in an easy to use Aqua interface (not to mention HFS filesystem support). Be sure to read this tutorial if you're new to rsync.

I use rsync on the command line, called by cron, to perform nightly incremental backups on changed files, which I then manually burn to CD once a week for "offsite" backup. The idea being that in the event of catastrophy (theft, fire, alien attack), your backup is not in the same place as your original. I've also automated backup for my various servers to external boxes using the same method but haven't got around to it for the laptop. And, not to be forgotten, I throw a nightly complete MySQL dump into the files to be backed up as well. --RobertDaeley 13:45, 9 Apr 2005 (EDT)

[edit] PsyncX

A GUI front-end for psync. Many of the options of rsync but not nearly as complex. Primary advantage over Carbon Copy Cloner is its ability to synchronize over a network connection.

[edit] Disk Archive (Darwin)

If you want to back up a whole bunch of data, spanning multiple media (say, DVDs) the Disk Archive tool might be a better alternative to the more ubiquitous Tape Archive. To my knowledge there aren't any Mac OS X binaries, so you may need to build from source (also, I had to do some weird symlink thing to work around a compile error), but the functionality makes it worth the hassle.

[edit] Resources

Take Control of Mac OS X Backups is a $10 ebook offered by Take Control Books, from the publishers of TidBITS. In addition to comparing the features of many Mac backup products, the book also walks through building your own backup and archival strategy. (Highly recommended. Jeff Porten 03:27, 12 Apr 2005 (EDT))

[edit] Other Strategies

I'm curious what backup strategies people use. I try to rsync to an external hard drive at least every few days and do a big multi-DVD snapshot every couple months.

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