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Backup/archive strategy question

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This is going to be very basic.


For some time I had been running Retrospect on my G3 using Zip disks. The G4 I used to replace the G3 doesn't have a Zip drive. Although I have an investment in Zip disks, I think CDs might work better in my new configuration.


Given that, can someone describe good backup and archive strategies and tactics using a large external hard drive? My assumption is that I would backup to the HD and archive to CDs. I'd also use the CDs for offsite backup periodically.


My first question is how does Retrospect "see" the hard drive. Does each backup set need to be a separate volume/partition? If not, does it create a new file when you move to a new version of the backup set? In other words, what formatting do I want on the external hard drive?


I will also be using the hard drive as backup for a laptop PC, but it won't be using Retrospect. For the PC, I'll just do directory copies to the hard drive.


Thanks in advance



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  • 9 months later...

I want to resurrect this thread (almost a year later) to ask a couple more questions about backing up to an external HD. I use the Mac version (6.0.204) but I assume the platform won't matter.


The way I used to do the backups to zip disks was to have 2-3 backup sets, would run one for awhile, move to the next one and start over, move to the next and start over, and then eventually rotate back through. One of those sets made its way off-site.


The first question is: if I want to use the same strategy with an external HD can I put multiple sets in the same partition or do I need to create multiple partitions, one per set?


The other question is: since I don't use zip disks anymore I will be using CDs for archive storage. To create an archive would you 1) just copy a backup set from the HD to a CD or 2) create a whole new backup backup set targeting CDs instead of the HD?





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I backup to files, one file (actually, file-pair) per partition being backed up.

My backup drive is one large but slow FireWire drive.

Each file starts out about 2/3 the size of the partition being backed up.

The files themselves can be copied into archive folders.

I made an Applescript to manage the files and decide when to do recycles.

Backups for three computers run every night at 3am.

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