The Practical Guide To Mac Security: Part 13, Alternative Backups

Check out the rest of the videos in this special course: The Practical Guide To Mac Security.


In addition to a Time Machine backup, you may want to consider a second backup that is also Time Machine, or a clone of your drive, or an online backup.

Comments: 10 Responses to “The Practical Guide To Mac Security: Part 13, Alternative Backups”

    Massimo Terrizzano
    2 months ago

    My family has several Macs and we are currently using Time Machine with an old Airport Time Capsule that backs up all our Mas over wi-fi. All the solutions suggested in your videos are connected by wire (apart from the online service by Backblaze). Can you suggest a wireless alternative to Time Capsule (that unfortunately Apple has discontinued)?

    2 months ago

    Massimo: You’ll need to either get a new Wi-Fi system that allows you to connect an external USB drive and use that, or get a Wi-Fi system without that ability and buy and configure a network storage system (NAS) and use that. I haven’t used any of these systems so I can’t really recommend one in particular, sorry.

    Jasper
    2 months ago

    Massimo-I have a TP-Link Archer VR900 modem router, connected to a drive with all my ripped DVDs on it. It backs up over wifi, so I’m pretty sure that you could use a similar set up with a NAS for Time Machine. If you’ve got USB ports on you modem/router you could test it—maybe yours is already networkable? PS Chronosync is a good, cheaper alternative to Carbon Copy Cloner.

    Umesh
    2 months ago

    My experience with Time machine backup is that while it works, it works really well. But for some unknown reasons, every few months (say 6-7 months), Mac fails to recognise the external drive and it gets invisible even to disk utility. I have to buy the another Seagate and start backup process again! Frustrating.

    Ramon
    2 months ago

    I’ve tried Time Machine but it hasn’t worked well for me and I find it confusing, although retrieving various versions of a file is interesting. I do bootable incremental backups with ChronoSync, check it out, it’s excellent. All superseded files go to a separate folder and it’s similar to Time Machine in that, but has the added bonus of being bootable, something TM I’m not sure does. I recently bought a Mac with M1 chip and am looking into the new issues with bootable backups.

    2 months ago

    Ramon: Ask yourself, though, why do you need a bootable backup? The old case for this is if you did something important (like a nuclear missile silo controller) and needed to immediately swap the drive and boot to keep working. But if your Mac’s internal drive failed would you really boot to the backup and use it? Why wouldn’t you replace the drive (or Mac) and restore from the backup?

    Dan O
    2 months ago

    Why use BackBlaze when you can use DropBox or Box to back up your files? Why not use iCloud?

    2 months ago

    Dan: iCloud is storage, not a backup. If you delete from iCloud Drive, it deletes the file. A backup would save you from that. See https://macmost.com/icloud-is-not-a-substitute-for-a-time-machine-backup-with-your-mac.html

    Lucas Hutton
    2 months ago

    I have two local Time Machine backups. I also use an online backup service: Carbonite. If I use File Vault, does my online backup service store those files in their encrypted state? Say I travel and need to retrieve a file from my online backup. Let’s say I log into my service from a public computer—a Windows machine. Will I be able to access my file? And, if I can, what’s to stop anyone else from accessing that file? What if someone hacks into the online service—are my files safe?

    2 months ago

    Lucas: You’d have to check with Carbonite about whether they encrypt the backups. FileVault wouldn’t be a factor there. They probably do. As for someone logging into your account, your strong password (and 2-factor authentication?) would prevent that.

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