Rethinking Backups

Since we moved back to Minnesota, the technology in our house has changed pretty dramatically. From a Mac mini tied to a single desk we now have two Apple portables around the house. The 2.26Ghz MacBook my wife uses stays in the house and moves around quite often while the 2.7Ghz Core i7 13″ MacBook Pro I have goes from home to work every day.

Because of the extreme mobility we now have, I now need to rethink my backup solutions to something a little more flexible and more regular. Portables inherently are more prone to failure due to the portability of the device (moving around is never good for a computer).

Right now here is what I am thinking.

USB External HDDs

The MacBook carries a 250GB hard disk and the MacBook Pro carries a 500GB disk. The idea is to get an external drive for each matching the size that can be used for a bootable clone. That clone would be updated weekly (hopefully) and there just in case the whole drive would die and I would need to get something off easily.

I’m not going to get tricky with it, just pick up some generic external disks from Western Digital so that I have a relatively decent warranty that I can use if things go “belly up”.

Time Capsule

This is the big change for me. I didn’t think I would ever think about using a Time Capsule, but with Laura now having a laptop upstairs and the rest of the technology in the house being in the basement, I think it is time to finally put one in place to fix two issues:

  1. wireless backups through Time Machine
  2. wireless coverage in the house

That sounds like a good deal to me. The 2TB version should be more than enough to act as the main “always there” backup device for the house along with any extra storage I might need for larger files.

Between the two of them I’m fairly confident that stuff will be “safe”. Of course, those are the words of a dead man right there, but that’s what it looks like I am going to go with soon.

First, though, is that I need to actually get the money for this stuff. Until then I continue my Time Machine backups every week.

9 replies on “Rethinking Backups”

How does your wife deal with your technology obsession, Bob? Most people don’t care about backups as much as you do for a simple home machine. How does she react?

Mainly, she tries to curb it.

In this case, she welcomes it because of the number of photos we have stored on her machine. I’ve already been bitten by data loss, so she does get a little sick of me talking about it so often.

The above system would actually be quite a bit simpler than what I have done in the past. Less hard drives being used.

Note to self: plant a baby monitor near Bob’s house to mess with his wireless coverage…

I’m already testing around the place with our current one to see what kind of damage it does. Really messed it up in one of our old places … it was so bad.

We ditched an old monitor because it jammed wifi signals for the whole neighborhood

We ditched an old monitor because it jammed wifi signals for the whole neighborhood

We ditched an old monitor because it jammed wifi signals for the whole neighborhood

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