Backup and Recovery

Best backup practices and recovering lost data.

How Do I Easily Back Up Google Photos Files Onto a Hard Drive?

Photos

Episode 1687

Rob from Arlington, TX

Rob uses Google Photos to back up his phone's photos. He wants to get those Google Photos pics onto a hard drive. Leo recommends Google Takeout, which allows users to download data from their Google features (including Photos). It allows users to download in a variety of formats and helps to avoid disaster if they get locked out of their account. 

Can I open email from an old iMac into a new client?

2009 iMac

Episode 1686

Joe from Miami, FL

Joe has a 2009 iMac with a bunch of emails on it, dating back to 2003. He wants to know how to open them in another email program, along with the contacts as well? Leo says it varies according to the email program you use. Leo says that since Apple Mail exports to MBox, you can open that format into just about any other email client. You can even open them in a text editor to see what's in it. Apple Mail will import them easily, and Thunderbird should be able to as well. Leo also recommends using SuperDuper to back them up. 

How Do I Move My Pics From My Hard Drive to Another Drive?

Google photos

Episode 1685

Stacy from Commerce township, MI

Stacy's hard drive is filling up after scanning a ton of photos. Her computer only has two USB ports. Does she need a hub in order to connect a USB thumb drive with an external hard drive? Leo says no. She should be able to plug them both in, and then drag from one to the other. But remember, if she deletes those images off the thumb drive, she still only has one copy. She should have three. Use Google Photos to upload them. Flickr gives 1000 photos for free. Shutterfly is free. And if she is an Amazon Prime user, she gets free photo backup as well.

Is Personal Vault on One Drive secure and easy to use?

OneDrive

Episode 1678

Joe from Tampa, FL

Joe wants to know if the personal vault feature of OneDrive is easier to use. He's copied and pasted folders into it and finds now that there are duplicates. Leo says that Microsoft apps save things to backup by default. Also, personal vault is encrypted for your security. It won't automatically sync from multiple places, just that my documents folder. Plus, you'd have to unlock it every time you need access. 

Can iCloud work with iDrive?

iCloud

Episode 1674

Terry from Long Beach, CA

Terry edits 4K video with his iPhone 11 Pro Max. But when he makes changes, the upload to his iMac is very slow. Leo says that no online backup is going to use all the bandwidth you have to backup. And your upload speed is always drastically lower than your download speed. Leo says that Apple does offer iCloud backup on your mobile phone, but it's only 5GB for free, and the data isn't private.  You can buy extra bandwidth, however. Leo recommends also backing up directly to your Mac. 

How Do I Back Up Programs?

TeraByte

Episode 1673

Bill from La Jolla, California

Bill wants to know how to back up his programs when he backs up his data. Leo says don't. It's problematic and rather difficult to do that, plus it'll take up a lot of space. What Leo recommends is to image the drive and use that as a backup. He can then blast it back onto the hard drive whenever he needs. Here are a few imaging programs to try:

Clonezilla

EaseUS

Drive Snapshot

Why is Time Machine backing up everything?

Apple's Time Machine

Episode 1672

George from Victor, Montana

George has a Seagate external hard drive for storing his photos. But when he opens it, he sees everything from photos to files. Leo says it's likely that his Mac is using Time Machine, and it's backing up everything. You have the option to disable the backing of system files and other data. So spend some time in the settings and decide what you want to backup. Once you tell Time Machine what drive you want for backup, then it'll backup regularly. Leo also recommends enabling iCloud.