Imagine this scenario. You turn on your Mac in the morning and nothing happens. No startup chime. No lights. Nothing. Your Mac has died. Whatever the reason (bad RAM, bad motherboard, dead hard disk drive) all your photos, music, movies, and documents are toasted digital crispy critters. They’re gone.
What will you do to get them back?
Sync And Clone Redux
Apple’s Time Machine helps restore lost files, but takes awhile, especially so if your Mac had to be taken into the shop for diagnosis and then repairs.
That means multiple backup methods are a requirement beyond Time Machine.
We’ve always recommended that a Mac user store critical, valuable files on other Macs, or external disk drives.
Why? Both apps are superb at creating a bootable backup, fully cloned and synchronized with your Mac’s disk drive.
Unfortunately, neither app is easily setup to create simple file syncs and file mirrors from your Mac to another Mac, or across the internet for off premise backups.
If I had to choose to use only one app for all my backup needs, I would go with ChronoSync instead of the clone tools. Why?
ChronoSync does bootable, cloned backups, too. So, if your Mac dies, a cloned hard disk drive can be attached to a different Mac and your files and apps are ready to use within minutes.
ChronoSync does more, though. It uses the familiar Left Target and Right Target layout so you know which files are being copied or synced to which device.
It can connect and sync or mirror files to disk drives or storage devices connected to your Mac or over a network, including USB, FireWire, NAS, flash, iPod, Windows, Linux or anything your Mac can see on a network.
Synchronization or mirroring between your Mac and other devices can be automatic, so whatever files are on your desktop Mac are ready for travel with your Mac notebook. And, they’ll sync up properly again when the MacBook returns home.
Sync, mirror, or simply backup, ChronoSync makes it easy and automatic with a built-in scheduler and a deep set of options, including notifications to you so you know what took place, when, and where.
Within minutes after installation ChronoSync makes perfect clones, full file syncs or mirrored copies between devices.
However, ChronoSync can do far more complex backup procedures based on a list of options, filters, and rules that give you granular control over each backup.
Even better, ChronoSync saves each backup as a document, and documents can be stacked and run in sequence for multiple backup routines with different devices, all according to a schedule.
ChronoSync is not as easy to setup and use as SuperDuper! or Carbon Copy Cloner, but it provides more options, and more ways to handle back ups, syncs, mirroring to other devices.
That said, the interface can be daunting. Not because it’s overly complex, but because the options are numerous. It’s a trial before you buy app. I suggest you try it and create both a cloned backup of your Mac’s disk drive, and then copy critical files to another Mac or external disk.