Backing Up

I have some hardware changes I am planning during the next year. These changes always create the chance of losing my PC’s data and I have decided I need to have some external backups. I use Apple TimeMachine and have a local back up of everything that is on my MacBook Pro.

However, if I had my MacBook Pro stolen or if it failed, then I am down to my TimeMachine backup. Since it is a local device, it could be stolen too, so I have been looking at offsite backup systems.

The odds of both the external TimeMachine backup and my MacBook going out at the same time are small, but always possible,

Quite a while back, I tried iDrive and didn’t like it. When I had tried iDrive, it had completely hogged all of my bandwidth and my PC was completely unusable.

I have been watching a lot of TWiT and one of their sponsors is Carbonite.

I took the TWiT recommendation and installed Carbonite. It runs $5/month for a single PC and it took much less resources than my previous iDrive experience.

The first thing I tested was its affect on my Internet speed. It had negligible effect.

While it was not consuming much bandwidth on my Internet, it also was not backing up very fast.

I have moved to Google photos from Apple Photos, so all of my photos are backed up by Google for free. Photos make up most of the space I use on my PC.

When I looked at my document area on my PC, it is only about 6 GB. Since I am using Google for Photos, I have all of my photos backed up on an external source as well as TimeMachine. I decided to use Google Drive to backup all of the rest of my data. Google Drive gives 15GB of space free, so that is plenty of space to backup everything I have.

I stopped Carbonite and backed up all of my laptop files in less than one day. I restarted the Carbonite backup and it ran for several days.

The Google Drive is really just off site storage, and will not keep all files on my laptop and the Google Drive in sync. Still it is another backup of my data and I can manually insure that I have my data in sync in both locations.

After futzing with Carbonite for several days, I decided to forget it and removed it from my system. I decided may it was something to do with being in Panama, something to do with Cable Onda, something strange about my MacBook Pro or something I don’t know about and I removed Carbonite from my system.

Then out of the blue, I got another $15 iDrive promotion. $15 for a year is the same as what I was offered in 2014, but I thought maybe something has changed. I have gotten the cryptical stuff backed up to Google Drive, so why not try iDrive again.

This time, it is working better for me. I decided to take it a step at a time and am selecting specific portions to back up s opposed to saying back up everything. The documents area backed up like Google did and now I am on the photos area. They will take some time, but since I have some reasonable backups, I am going to stick with iDrive.

6 thoughts on “Backing Up

  1. When I returned from the states about a month ago, I brought back four 4TB Seagate, portable, USB, fit in your hand, hard drives. Got from Amazon for $117 before Florida tax. Sure enough, customs in PTY, singled me out and went through my stuff. When asked what I was doing with all “electronical”, I just replied it was for my casa in Chiriqui. Enough said, he said OK, & let me go. Of course he also wondered about the 40 LED mr16 bulbs in my suitcase too. “Mí casa” again is all it took. At least me & 3 of my friends can now back up our stuff just in time for rainy season. Sure enough, the day after I arrived back, lightning took out a bunch of TVs, routers and modems here in Brisas. Seems it came through the cable this time, so UPSs, and surge protectors didn’t help. The guy at the David LG repair shop sold a few cable surge protectors that week!

  2. I will give you the warning I give all my clients about using cloud storage as a backup. If the cloud storage is set to keep everything in sync – you can not count on this to be a true backup. That is because any damage or deletion to the original file will be almost immediately be reflected in the cloud storage device, thereby giving you no way to step back in time when disaster strikes.

    To play out the example of the laptop being stolen… the thief erases the files on the stolen laptop and the cloud storage then erases the files it has so that it matches the files on the laptop. That is keeping the files in sync but horrible if you are now wanting to go back to it to retrieve your lost files. The same would happen with a virus infection or the dreaded randsomware encryption of all files. The infected or encrypted files would be transferred to the cloud storage in their unusable form.

    When using cloud storage be aware that keeping files in sync makes it unreliable as a true backup. A true backup requires that the files not be changed by any process other than the user making a new backup.

  3. If I have read iDrive correct, it keeps up to 10 previous versions of a file. So as I read it, if a file is deleted, there is still a previous version available. Apple Time Machine does the same in that you can find previous versions. As always, one should never depend on a single backup.

Leave a Reply