Back[up] in Time

Our site was down for the last 2 hours. It's a story with a moral, or at least a lesson.

There are two types of backup systems. The first mirror data, so that if you have a problem with your storage medium, you've got a backup. The second archives data, so that you have old versions of data around. Both are useful. If the latter is comprehensive it can give you the results of the former, but not usually vice-versa.

The way I keep up to date is with FolderShare, a helpful utility that Microsoft bought and seems to be completely ignoring, which suits me because it works just fine. FolderShare keeps folders and files synced between multiple machines. When I drop new files on my development (virtual) machine, they show up seconds later on the server. Very convenient. (FolderShare also allows you to share your files with other folks, thus the name, but I don't use that feature). This is essentially a mirror backup. So when I accidentally deleted the entire folder on my development machine, FolderShare conveniently deleted them from the website. Ooops.

But fortunately I also sync that folder to my Mac, which I keep backed up using Time Machine. It took about ten seconds to retrieve an hour-old archived copy, which FolderShare happily restored it to the website.

I could really have used this sort of tech last year when I spent four hours getting our finances up to date in QuickBooks, then two seconds irrevocably deleting the file. This is the first time I've needed it since I started using Time Machine.

But Time Machine doesn't really provide a full mirror of my HD, and FolderShare is only mirroring some of my data, not the whole HD. If it crashed, my data would be there on Time Machine, which is good, but I'd still have to reinstall OS X before restoring the data, which would take time I might not have, especially knowing how badly I procrastinate on stuff. So next on my list is to buy Super Duper which will give me an immediately-bootable mirror backup.

The final backup solution I need to get is to get our data offsite. My plan is to use FolderShare to sync my computer with Gene's, across the city. I figure if all of Seattle goes away I have bigger problems than lost data.

Our next appearances


October 8, 2018 Walla Walla, WA
Walla Walla Rural Library District Staff Day (Gene)

November 15, 2018 Palm Beach, FL
Palm Beach County Library System (Gene)

November 16, 2018 Fort Lauderdale, FL
Southeast Florida Library Information Network (Gene)


Jan 25 - 28, 2019 Seattle, WA ALA Midwinter (Library COMIC Booth #726) (Gene)

March 1, 2019 Phoenix, AZ
Maricopa County Library District (Gene)

April 15 - 17, 2019 Austin, TX Texas Library Association Annual Conference (Library COMIC booth, Monday night event) (Gene)

June 21 - 24, 2019 Washington, DC
ALA Annual (Library COMIC booth) (Gene)

Check out our Full Schedule

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