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How to back up your data on macOS

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09 / 02 / 2015

How to back up your data on macOS

Backup - it is not just a backup of some important data. It's your plan B!

In the digital age it sounds obvious to make reserved copies of important data. But how many people discard this simple rule and step on the same rake?  There are so many ways to maintain your data, but we'd suggest spreading your data across a combination of these things: cloud storages, external USB hard-drives, backup programs. Your best defense is to make sure you back up your data in different methods and different formats.

According to the "3-2-1" rule data should be stored as follows:

  1. All relevant information should be stored in triplicate.

  2. Data should be kept at least on two different sources (eg, cloud + USB flash drive, flash drive + DVD-ROM, and so on).

  3. One copy should be located in the remote place.

There are multiple ways files can be lost for good:

#1 Computer crashes

“It will never happen to me” always happens, sometimes twice. To be on the safe side you would better back up your files and not pick up the pieces after a computer crash.

#2 Viruses

Mac viruses happen so rarely to the majority of users who switch to OS X after using a PC with Windows: the OS is clean and safe. However just because Mac malware is rare it does exist or can be transferred from your PC.

#3 Hard drive failure

It happens that hard drives fail in the most inappropriate time - just before the college or work deadline. The truth is that you will never predict when it happens, so do not miss the chance to backup your data and get professional help.

#4 Physical computer damage

Buying the laptop we pay the price for convenience - after getting portable device we should be more careful as laptops are very susceptible to physical damage.

#5 Theft

In this case backup to the hard drive is useless. It is more reasonable to store your data on the separate location, i.e. cloud storage or usb flash drive. But in case your Mac is stolen you still have a chance to get it back by means of Anti-theft feature. Having the  ip address and a picture of the person who is using the lost or stolen computer can be priceless evidence when it comes to recovering your property.

As a Mac user you can use Time Machine, but also keep in mind that Time Machine only provides a back-up, like incremental backups from the Windows 7 backup program and similar software. It doesn't provide long-term storage for files you want to keep. If you delete them from your hard drive, then eventually they will be gone. Ultimately you have to run the backup program, not the standard file manager.