For years, we at Mac360 have advocated a multi-faceted approach to backing up files. Clone the Mac to an external disk. Use Time Machine. Upload critical files to online storage. One of the Mac’s best ever backup apps, responsible for saving Mac user bacon for many years, has a new feature you’re not going to like.
When Clones Are Not Free
Mac users can choose from a few dozen apps that perform one kind or another of critical backups. Some simply synchronize folders to another disk drive or Mac.
Other apps make it easier to manage backups of Mail, iTunes, iPhoto, and iMovie files.
A number of Mac backup apps are used to clone your Mac’s entire disk drive to a second, external disk drive, making the copy fully bootable and an instantly usable replacement for your Mac’s storage.
Among the leaders of Mac backup clones are SuperDuper! and Carbon Copy Cloner. Both perform perfect clones of your Mac’s disk drive to another disk. Both feature a built-in schedule maker for unattended backups.
What was the difference between the two? SuperDuper! was commercial, while Carbon Copy Cloner was donation ware. The latest version of CCC still features the top four basic functions every Mac backup app should have.
Clone: This is a bootable backup of your entire Mac. Apps, files, folders, Mail, movies, photos, music, everything.
Incremental Backup: The first clone takes awhile to create because everything on your Mac must be copied, bit by bit, to another disk drive, and the copy is then made bootable. But subsequent backups only copy files that have changed, speeding up the cloning process.
Scheduled Tasks: Good backup apps shouldn’t have to be manually operated. CCC gives you an elegant schedule function so the Mac can be cloned while you’re asleep or away. There’s even an option to receive email notifications on the status of each backup.
Network Backups: It’s one thing to backup Mac files to an external disk, but the added capability of backing up to another Mac on your home network or across the internet is priceless.
That brings me to the latest changes to Carbon Copy Cloner.
There’s good news and bad news. The good news is that Carbon Copy Cloner is ready to clone and backup your Mac running on Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion. The bad news is that Carbon Copy Cloner now comes with a price tag. It’s no longer donation ware.
Worse, the price tag makes Carbon Copy Cloner one of the more expensive Mac backup apps, decidedly more expensive than the popular SuperDuper!
If the files on your Mac are worth saving, then a few dollars toward an app that makes a complete, bootable backup clone of your Mac is a small amount to pay. While many CCC users are not surprised that the app went commercial, most of us are surprised at the hefty new price tag.