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Critical file backups

Tue, Sep 9, 2008

Mac OS X, Server / Web Apps

It’s sad to think about. You will only know how valuable something is until you lose it.

I’m sure many of you have lost a file, or some data, or A LOT of data, like your whole hard drive. So we talk about backing up.

But where do we backup? Not on the same drive or a partition on the same drive. A 2nd internal drive? An external drive? Well, these can die, or be lost to fire, flood, theft, etc. Certainly an external hard drive that backs up every night is the minimum we should be doing.

But what about offsite backup? Where do we do this? How? How do we secure our data? How do we upload that much data? There are services out there like Mozy and BackJack that look OK, but cost money. On my new laptop, my User folder is already 30GB; that sounds like too much to push out even over my 2.5Mb upstream cable line.

So let’s make a list of the files that are absolutely critical:

1. Your Databases (SQL, FileMaker, Address Book, etc.)

2. Your Bookmarks (Safari, Firefox, Transmit, etc.)

3. Your Calendar (iCal, etc.)

4. Your Email (if a manageable size.)

5. Your Keychains

Now when we look at these files, we can forge ahead with a doable plan of backing up these files, compressing them, encrypting them, and then automatically uploading them to a hidden folder on an FTP server. So even if someone finds the compressed archive, it is password-protected so they cannot even open the archive.

Next week, I’ll show you how…….

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- who has written 48 posts on Mac Lab: An Apple Macintosh OS X, Mac & PC Blog.


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