Mac backup software

Has anyone found any good Mac backup software?

Most Mac backup software is considered harmful. Before that excellent post came out (in April 06) I was using Impression, but that post revealed shortcomings in the way Impression works.

The only reliable two options seemed to be Synk or SuperDuper. I’ve been struggling on with Synk since August (it’s shareware, but I paid for it back then)… but I really can’t stand it any longer.

In theory it’s great. It uses the same mechanism as Spotlight to keep track of the changes on your hard disk – which means each backup should take only a few minutes. But in practice, that mechanism just doesn’t work. Furthermore, every time I backup it finds a list of “conflicts” between my original hard disk and my backup. Huh? There can’t be “conflicts” – it’s a backup – my hard disk wins every time, by definition. Resolving these conflicts takes – literally – half an hour choosing the same option in 214 pop-up menus, due to the design of the interface. And then, sometimes, the backup doesn’t work.

So, I am going to try to get my money back. I’ve never tried getting my money back from a shareware developer. Wish me luck.

Meanwhile, I’m giving SuperDuper a go. It looks happy so far:

SuperDuper

Update: the guys at Synk gave me my money back within a few hours, with no quibbles. I’m glad. I wish them the best of luck.

One Response to “Mac backup software”

  1. Hi,

    It’s certainly a lot harder than your average Unix. I haven’t tried any of the GUI products, but I tried and failed and ran into most of the documented problems with the usual tools. I’ve got a long blog post unpublished on the whole process, that might see the light of day some time.

    The thing I’ve found that works for me so far ( for some value of works that involves not skipping files, corrupting things, or blowing up and refusing to sync ) is Unison, ( http://www.cis.upenn.edu/~bcpierce/unison/ ) which, although not expressly designed to be such, can easily be convinced to work like rsync, and doesn’t go nuts over HFS+ quirks, like every other mac rsync I’ve tried ( including the Apple one, that’s supposed to do resource forks and whatnot, but is useless and explodey )

    I just use it to sync /Users on various macs nightly to a network RAID, It probably wouldn’t be too hard to script something more sophisticated around it.