Feb. 14th, 2017

thewayne: (Default)
We leave tomorrow for Phoenix, and I wanted to get my camera memory cards cleared (I have three or four shoots planned), so it was time to get my backups restarted. It had been a month since I'd backed up my 27" iMac, mainly because my computer desk suffered a near-collapse. I wanted to move my iMac to a lower shelf, which required removing a board from the top. When I did, there was a *POP* and suddenly there was a half inch gap on the left and right side of the desk. I off-loaded everything heavy from the top, rushed to the village hardware store and bought a bag of 2" screws, and promptly reinforced it. But I've been sick, and not to get in to the complications thereof, haven't finished the job. So my iMac has been sitting on the dining table for a bit over a month.

Today I cleared the memory cards, and it's a good thing I did. I'm not sure what happened, I'm guessing that when I did the initial restore of my new iMac from the most recent backup of my previous iMac that I might not have used the most recent backup. Like I said, I don't quite know what happened. I do know that my 2016 photo folder did not contain the photos from the October Scott Kelby Photo Walk, fortunately they were still on my memory cards, so those were not lost. I know I had copied them off my cards as I had done some Photoshop on those images, perhaps I filed them under the wrong year. I'll look in to it later.

The main plan for today was to clear the memory cards, refresh the backup, take the backup to the observatory, then go down to Alamogordo and pick up prescription refills. I copied three cards to appropriate folders then plugged in the backup drive. It said it'd take two hours to back up the system -- 180 gig of changed stuff! Oh, well. So I could go to Alamo and get the meds, THEN go to the observatory. No big. Get in the shower, and the backup was almost done. Hurray for USB 3!

By that time the spousal unit was awake. She offered to do the observatory run for me as she'd left a pair of shoes there from her weekend work shift and she needed them for the trip. I made a counter-offer that we do both errands together, culminating in a late lunch/early dinner in Alamo. She agreed, so off we ran. But before we departed, I plugged in the other 3 TB USB 3 drive in to my iMac to start the second backup.

We got home about half an hour ago, and the backup failed. Not enough space on the drive. Considering the iMac has a 3 TB drive, and it had over 800 gig free, it shouldn't have been a problem, but never mind. So I reformatted the external drive and restarted the backup. Ten minutes ago it reported an estimate of 16 hours to complete the backup, now it's down to 8 hours. Again, huzzah for USB 3!

So I now have a complete backup off-site, a second backup in-process, and a bare-bones and dated backup of the old (stolen) iMac in a fire-proof lockbox. I'll put the in-process backup in the lockbox when it finishes later tonight or in the morning. We'll have our laptops with us, they were backed up about a month ago and they don't change very much: I'll refresh their backups when we get back late next week.

I don't think there is such a thing as overkill when it comes to backing up computers. I once accidentally overwrote an important file, and when you do that, the only recourse is restoring from a backup. Turned out the backup had a problem and was unreadable. Fortunately I had a second backup copy at work, and that got me my file back, albeit a day later. Maintaining two sets of backups is extra work, and it's extra expense because you need two sets of external drives, but it is also extra peace of mind.

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