backup

How can I backup both Windows and iPad without iTunes?

iTunes

Episode 1625

Octavio from Fontana, CA

Octavio wants to make a switch to iOS, but he wants to know how he can do backup while on the road and not use iTunes? He wants to also backup his Windows machine with the same option. Leo says that if you want a "trust no one cloud backup" then there really isn't going to be a solution. But a local backup is your best bet for that, and that means a NAS (network-attached storage). Leo likes Synology. It'll backup every machine, except Octavio's iPad. Your only option there is to iCloud directly or through iTunes.

Can malware get onto my backup?

Malware Types

Episode 1623

Martin from Hayward, WI

Martin has a backup running on his computer all the time, and he's worried that malware can get onto it. Leo says that current malware is "wormable" and can actually take advantage of Microsoft's networking, spreading through the network. It's called "eternal blue." So if you have hot storage that's online and current, you have to treat it as vulnerable. The only real good backup is a disconnectable backup. 

Do Both Imaging and Incremental File Backups

Imaging a hard drive is basically creating an exact mirror copy of the hard drive. The copy is bootable and can be blasted onto the same or new hard drive fairly quickly. Of course, it can get out of date since the image is "frozen" in time, so making an image every month is a good idea. However, it is also smart to make a file-by-file backup procedure for extra peace of mind. It is recommended to use both backup methods in order to conserve important media and files.

Don't Rely on Time Machine for Your Only Backup

Apple's Time Machine works in a funky way, so go over to your local store and get a large 4TB (or bigger) drive. Also, get Shirt Pocket's SuperDuper program, which will make a bootable external disk that replicates the internal drive in your system. In case something goes wrong with your internal drive, reboot your Mac while holding down the "option" key, and boot the backup. The newest version 3.2.5 supports Mojave and includes their Smart Delete, Smart Wake, and Smart Update features.

Why Can't Time Machine Complete My Backup?

Time Machine

Episode 1604

Kevin from Bellflower, CA

Kevin just returned from an Alaska Cruise and downloaded all the photos and videos, but his Time Machine backup will not complete it due to insufficient free space. Leo says it sounds like his hard drive has run out of room. Even with 20GB of free space, Time Machine may be taking a snapshot of the drive locally, before backing it up. Choices: Free up space on the internal drive or buy a larger one. 

The chatroom says that if the external drive can't be seen, Time Machine will make the backup locally. So make sure it can see the external drive. 

How can I backup my music from my phone to my computer?

iPhone

Episode 1593

Clyde from San Diego, California

Clyde ripped all his CDs and has the music on his phone, but he doesn't have any backups anymore. How can he back them up from his phone? Leo says that if you backup your mobile phone, your phone backs it up. But Leo wants Clyde to also make a separate, accessible copy of the music from his phone. Connect your phone back to your computer and then let iTunes back it up and add those phones to the iTunes library.  Here's how. There's a third party program called Senuti that can also work. 

How Can I Connect My Backup System to My New Fiber Internet Connection?

Verizon

Episode 1592

Richard from Bucks County, Pennsylvania

Jake recently "cut the cable" in favor of fiber. He's getting 700 MBps up and down. Leo says WOW. Jake wants to be able to connect his router to it so he can back up his computer. Leo says he would have to put the Verizon router in bridge mode and it won't do it.  He will need to get another router that can handle that kind of speed. 

Multiple Smaller Drives are More Reliable than 1 Massive Hard Drive

Leo advises to buy multiple smaller hard drives over one extremely large hard drive. The bigger the size, the higher the error rate...which can be catastrophic in the worst case scenario. In any case, move away from old spinning drives to faster Solid-state Drives (SSD), where the cost per gigabyte is getting conveniently cheaper. You may have so much storage in the future that you could forget to discipline yourself on cleaning out files!

Why Can't I Restore my Backup?

Solid State Drive

Episode 1585

Larry from San Francisco, CA

Larry's sister had her hard drive fail. Her backup isn't responding and it seems like her hard drive may be "locked." Leo says that doesn't make sense at all. If she made an image of the drive, she should be able to blast it onto another drive pretty easily, and Acronis should handle it. And unless she was locking her drive before, there's no reason it would be locked now. So more likely, if the recovery failed, then it could have messed up her SSD because the installation didn't finish. Leo recommends getting a new copy of Windows and format and reinstall.