If you own a Mac (or a Windows PC or any other computer device with files you want to keep) you need a backup. How many ways can you backup your Mac? As it turns out, there are dozens of ways to create a backup of valuable files, and dozens of apps that doc the deed.
Among the many ways to backup files from a Mac, one stands out as the method of choice for Mac users who cannot be without their Macs, catastrophe notwithstanding. The Mac clone. Cloning your Mac means you have a complete, bit-for-bit copy of the Mac’s hard disk drive or SSD on an external storage device, which itself is bootable.
That means your Mac is duplicated to another hard drive. Lose the Mac thanks to theft or motherboard malfunction or screen death, and all you need to do is plug the clone disk into another Mac and you’re right back to where the Mac was at the end of the last clone backup.
Through the years I’ve written about many different Mac backup solutions and the different cloning app but there’s one that differs from both the popular and the one-trick cloning apps. It’s called ChronoSync, a Mac backup and sync app that’s been around for years, and while it clones your Mac’s disk it has other features which make it even more useful. First and foremost, ChronoSync started life as a backup and sync app, then took on the mantle of a cloning backup. That means it has more features than cloning apps.
ChronoSync uses the time honored Source and Destination, left to right, method to sync files and create clones. Simply select a folder of files on your Mac, then select a destination, check the Trial Sync to see what is going to happen before it happens, and a few seconds later a sync is underway. ChronoSync syncs from the Mac, to the Mac, and in both directions.
The app itself has built in tools to create sync or backup documents, schedule each one to run when needed, and performs both backups between Macs and other devices, yet creates a bootable cloned backup, too. Backup. Sync. Clone. Plus, ChronoSync has built-in notifications which can give you the details– good, bad, or otherwise– of each backup, sync, or clone operation and push them to your iPhone as needed.
On the surface, those steps and the ChronoSync source and destination method will work for any Mac user with external disks, or multiple Macs where the Documents folder needs to be synchronized between Macs, but there’s much, much more going on so it’s easy to become intimidated by the sheer number of options.
For example, ChronoSync can setup an array of rules which filter files that need to be ignored while syncing other files. Those rules are extensive. Backups are easy from Mac to Mac or Mac to external USB disk, but ChronoSync also performs backups over a local network or the internet. Backups or syncs after the first one are incremental– meaning only files that have changed from the previous backup are copied– which speeds up the backup by an order of magnitude.
I can’t say enough good about ChronoSync, and along with SuperDuper!, Carbon Copy Cloner, and the new Get Backup Pro, present Mac users with a growing list of secure, dependable, and reliable backup, sync, and clone options.