Partitioning a Mac's HDD and Image Backups

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Cruise, Jul 25, 2013.

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  1. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    My daughter just bought a MacBook Pro and I would like to create two additional HDD partitions, one for data-backups (using time machine) and the other for disk-image backups (using ?).

    As she and I are both Mac noobs, I would appreciate some advice on how to create the additional partitions and which backup app to use for creating disk-images.

    Cruise
     
  2. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    Hi Cruise,
    For both partitioning and image backups just use apple's "Disk Utility".
    Disk Utility 12.x: Partition a disk
    Disk Utility 12.x: Create a disk image
    Disk Utility 12.x: Restore a disk image to a disk
    OS X: About OS X Recovery
    OS X Recovery Disk Assistant v1.0

    ps. When creating an image perform it from outside the OS/partition you want to backup. You can do it either from the recovery environment or from another installation of OSX in another partition or on an external disk or by using the recovery from a usb created with the recovery assistant.

    Panagiotis
     
  3. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Hi Panagiotis, thanks for the reply!

    My daughter already has a few new apps and personal data files on her Macbook's HDD, so won't I need a partitioning utility that is non-destructive to the existing (single) partition?

    Also, isn't there anything for the Mac more akin to the PC disk-imaging apps I'm familiar with (e.g., DS, IFW, etc.)? ...and how do I create a CD/DVD boot disk for the purpose of creating and restoring disk-images?

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013
  4. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Cruise,

    You have 3 licenses for IFL (family use). So use one of your IFL CDs.
     
  5. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    You're welcome. :)

    Disk utility's partitioning is non-destructive (when done correctly) but since you are a noob in the mac os it's better to create an image of your OS partition first.

    The steps to take:
    1. Format a usb disk with the OSX "disk utility".
    2. Restart the Mac and hold down the Command key and the R key (Command-R), and keep holding them until the Apple icon appears, indicating that your Mac is starting up. After the Recovery System is finished starting up, you should see a desktop with a OS X menu bar and a "Mac OS X Utilities" application window.
    2. There click the "Disk Utility". Then click/select the OS partition and after that click the icon "New Image".
    3. In the new window that appears
    "Save as" = name of the image
    "where" = select the usb partition to store the image
    "image format"= (leave it to the default) compressed
    "encryption" = (leave it to the default) none
    4. Press save and wait for the image to be created and verified.
    You are done.
    ---------------
    After that you can repartition the mac's drive as you want. In case something goes wrong you'll use that image to restore the system to the partition that you want and disk utility will automatically restore the image to the resized partition and the recovery partition (it's a hidden 650mb partition)

    IFW/IFL/IFD can create and restore images of "HFS Plus" but cannot write to hfs plus. You will need a ntfs,fat32,etc. formated partition to store the images.

    But first learn and instruct your daughter to do it with the disk utility; it is much more flexible since it can restore both as sector imaging app and as file imaging app (when the partition is smaller from the last occupied sector of the image).

    Use the recovery disk assistant http://support.apple.com/kb/dl1433 to create a usb flash for emergency recovery.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAEoI2qL-f8

    Panagiotis
     
  6. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Brian, we are talking about a Mac here - how does that work with OS X?

    Note that while I will have her backup to an external drive whenever she can, she will be using her MacBook going from class to class, taking notes, etc., so it would be very convenient to have Time Machine make frequent backups to another partition on her internal HDD.

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013
  7. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Panangiotis, does Disk Utility and Recovery Disk Assistant allow me to perform those operation on a DVD rather than USB stick (as I don't have a spare stick at this time)?

    Cruise
     
  8. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Cruise,

    See Post #5.
     
  9. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    If you have a spare usb hdd use it for both booting and storing the images.
    1.Open Disk Utility,
    2.Select the usb drive on which you would like to install the Recovery HD and format it as a GUID Partition Table
    3. add 2 partitions.One small should be at least 1 GB in size to use for the recovery enviroment; and one large (rest of the drive) to use as a place to store the image.
    4.Make sure the format for the partitions as Mac OS Extended (Journaled).
    5.Click Apply to perform the changes.

    then use the assistant to add the recovery disk to the small partition.

    Panagiotis
     
  10. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Brian, I think the world of the Terabyte Trio (for PCs), but if none of them can write to HFS+ they can't save to a partition on the internal drive. And even if my daughter used one of them to backup to an external USB drive (with FAT32/NTFS format), how could that image file ever be restored to the internal (HFS+) drive? :doubt:

    Cruise
     
  11. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Cruise,

    You can backup and restore but the image must be on a non "HFS Plus" partition.

    You can use IFW from BootCamp.
     
  12. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Sorry Brian, but I simply don't see that as a practical backup/restore solution for my daughter and her MacBook. :doubt:

    Cruise
     
  13. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Cruise, where do we differ? She needs to have the backup stored outside of her laptop. On an external HD. Not on the laptop internal HD.

    IFL can create backup images of her internal HD partitions on an external HD.
     
  14. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Brian, I thought I understood what you were conveying, but I didn't think IFL was capable of restoring (writing) its image file onto the Mac's internal drive. However, it now appears that presumtion is incorrect.

    So am I now to understand that as long as IFL's image file is saved to an external drive (formatted FAT32 or NTFS) IFL is able to properly restore the Mac's (OS X) partitions? Are there limitations using IFL with the Mac - compared to IFL's capabilities to backup and restore (or mount) Windows partitions?

    Cruise

    Ps. At this early stage on her Mac (OS X) learning curve I believe that BootCamp (dual booting) would just confuse her.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2013
  15. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Cruise,

    That's true and I'm hoping Panagiotis will answer the remainder of your question.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2013
  16. The Shadow

    The Shadow Registered Member

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    Hi guys,

    I believe I read (somewhere) that in order for IFL to faithfully backup and restore OS X partitions it is necessary to make sector-by-sector backups. :doubt:

    TS
     
  17. Wendi

    Wendi Registered Member

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    Hi fellas,

    I believe you will find Carbon Copy Cloner a far simpler and free* backup approach - designed specifically for the Mac. Check it out... :)

    Got to run now, Wendi

    *Current versions of CCC have become "commercial-ware" (about $40 US), but the last free version (referenced) still seems to work!
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2013
  18. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    I already did answer it.
    TB products can backup and restore correctly HFS+ partitions
    http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/upgradehist-image-for-windows.htm

    But I see no point to use other products since apple has included a complete and very easy to use imaging app; and with the addition of the recovery environment in lion and later the user no longer needs external media to boot for performing the restore.
    It is a 3-4 mouse clicks procedure
    http://www.switchingtomac.com/tutorials/using-disk-utility-to-backup-your-mac/
    When done from outside the OS, eg. from the recovery environment, performs a sector based backup and is very fast, when done from inside the OS performs a file based backup and it is slower.

    Programs like carbon copy cloner or superduper are alternatives to ASR(Apple system restore) used by disk utility. Personally I prefer ASR but I do like SuperDuper for its ability to create a sandboxed enviroment.

    ps. those that like to know more about how ASR performs the backups/restores open the terminal and type "man asr". There you can read the manual of ASR and how exactly it performs the backups/restores.

    Panagiotis
     
  19. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    This has been very educational for an old 'PC-dog' like myself, so my thanks (in alphabetical order) to Brian, Panagiotis, and Wendi.

    My daughter's 1TB external USB HDD (which she was using to backup her PC) has nearly 700GB of free space; so I was thinking I could use that space to create two HFS+ partitions; one for Time Machine backups and one for Image backups. Please let me know if you see any problems (or precautions) in my attempting that...

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  20. Wendi

    Wendi Registered Member

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    Hi Cruise,

    In addition to Panagiotis' excellent advice, you may find this YouTube video quite informative (re partitioning).

    -http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qc9VnF-QIdY-

    Regards,
    Wendi
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  21. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    That's very much appreciated Wendi. The perception that 'a Mac is much more user-friendly than a PC' sure doesn't ring true for me (most likely because I've been using PCs for a very long time). But I just need to know enough to get my daughter started with her new MacBook, using it properly and making all-important frequent backups! Then it's back to my familiar PCs!

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  22. Wendi

    Wendi Registered Member

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    Speaking of Mac perceptions, many Mac users believe that they needn't be concerned about malware. While I believe it is true that OS X is less vulnerable to malware infections than Windows (especially with the introduction of 'Gatekeeper' which is included in 'Mountain Lion') why take chances with security? Even Apple recommends installing security software on the Mac. So you might consider that for your daughter's new MacBook Pro. ;)

    Wendi
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
  23. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Hmm, I was focusing so intensely on a backup methodology for her Mac that I completely overlooked security. So thanks for the wake-up call Wendi.

    Cruise.
     
  24. The Shadow

    The Shadow Registered Member

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    Panagiotis,

    Thanks for the correction on the more recent versions of IFL (it's good to know that IFL is now capable of backing-up and restoring just the used sectors of an OS X partition). I have been using OS X's Disk Utility to backup my wife's MacBook, but not as often as I should! Since I am far more familiar (comfortable) with Terabyte's programs on my PCs, I will start using IFL to backup her MacBook. ;)

    TS
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2013
  25. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    Hi TS,

    You are welcome.
    My brother in law, also prefers IFW instead of Disk Utility, so I instructed him to create a small partition at the end of his internal drive and use it as a TBWinRE partition. Now, he uses apple's bootmanager//bootloader to boot in that partition and then perform the backup/restore without having to use external media.

    Panagiotis
     
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