At one time I only used SuperDuper! (I’m dropping the exclamation from this point on) to create a backup image to an external disk that’s directly attached to my Mac. Because I don’t keep my external drive connected to my Mac I wanted a way to have a full image backup done automatically every night. This way I’d always get a full image backup without me needing to actually do something. I decided to use my Synology NAS for this, although any NAS or home server share should work.
I use my Synology DS1511+ NAS as my repository for everything backup. I created a new share on the NAS since no existing share was really suitable. I’ll use one share for all my SuperDuper images so that they’ll be easier to find and manage. I called it “SuperDuper” (imaginative, I know). My ID has read/write access to the share.
I could keep the drive mounted all the time and simply schedule SuperDuper to do the backup every night. But I dislike having my backups always connected to the computer they are protecting. SuperDuper will automatically mount the share if it’s not mounted. This was recent news to me, learned as I was creating a macro to auto-mount the share and found that SuperDuper was doing it already. This is SuperDuper 2.7.2 and OS X 10.9.2, both the latest versions at this time. I created a Keyboard Maestro macro to unmount the drive when SuperDuper exits.
- Select a disk image as the destination. The file does not need to exist, SuperDuper will create it. (click any image to see it full size)
- Then give the image file a name, select a “…Sparse Bundle…” as the type (assuming your using OS X 10.5 or later). Then click <Save>. You’ll need to be sure the destination has enough free space for your entire hard disk. Include free space in your calculation so you aren’t surprised in a year after your disk usage grows.
The file won’t actually be created until SuperDuper starts the first image copy.
- Then click the Options button so the copy can be configured.
- Select the General Tab if it’s not already selected. Select “Smart Update” as the copy type and tell SuperDuper to shut down when the image copy completes successfully. Click <OK> to save the settings.
- The last step is to schedule the backup so click the <Schedule> button.
- Setup the schedule you want. Mine is shown below.
If you have multiple makes I’d recommend setting a schedule so they don’t all backup at the same time. This will reduce the load on the network and the NAS which should allow the backup to complete quicker.
- As I mentioned, I don’t like having my backup drives always connected to the machine they protect. To accomplish this I have a Keyboard Maestro macro that checks to see if any of my backup drives are mounted when SuperDuper exits and unmounts them. Here’s the macro:
Writing images to the Synology NAS has been surprisingly reliable. I open the image every couple of weeks to make sure there weren’t any issues. I’ve yet to encounter a bad image file. I had one case where SuperDuper wouldn’t mount the image file. In this case I created a new image file just fine. I could also open the old file in finder and copy files out of it, so I don’t know what the problem was.
The image backup isn’t bootable, but I have other solutions for that. At least I have a complete backup of any data, configuration and application files.
I’m pretty happy with this solution and it seems to be working pretty well.