The Mac Migration

The journey of a rabid PC user into the land of OS X. This is not a blog about "why" you should switch. It is a guide for those who "have" switched.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

more painful lessons about backing up

I think firewire is the standard for Mac and because of this the USB support is a little lacking. Just a note, DO NOT try to move files to a USB drive if it is not connected directly to the USB port. This may seem obvious but I tried to move files to a USB drive on an unpowered hub and the transfer would just die. There was no warning or error. Finder tends to hang when these transfers died out and nothing short of powering down the USB drive would interrupt the hang. Also for some reason installing *anything* seems to be a bad idea during this transfer process. During the system optimization the file transfer would stall and then neither the installation nor the transfer would respond. Finder does NOT deal well with relaunching and I am unsure why it is even presented as an option. I've managed to get Finder to die but never to come back. That being said I have finally managed to get the files of my first two disk images (one with a base install and the next with X11 installed) safely moved to a backup drive.
The first image took around 14 GB and the second 15GB. I am prepping my machine for a third image now that I have a good array of applications installed and configured. The hard drive image should weigh in at roughly 18GB or 19GB. Some important considerations:
1) Move your iTunes library from the main drive somewhere else. There is no need to include all of this weight in your drive image. The same goes for photos, movies and possibly documents. I am creating a seperate backup strategy for those types of files and would rather not take up more space then is needed for the images.
I need an entire post to talk about iTunes. There are some odd behaviors and hacks that will allow easier movement of files. Everything in iTunes is controlled by an xml file so peek into it if you want some insight into where I'm going with all this. Moving my iTunes folder alone saved me 8GB of space.


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