• Is there a better alternative to the Apple Time Capsule for automatic wireless local backups?

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  • My girlfriend and I have three Apple computers in all. At the moment we have a traditional wireless router, but I am becoming more interested in using something like Apple's Time Capsule where the router and hard drive are combined allowing for wireless scheduled backups.

    What are the best products out there for scheduling automatic wireless local hard drive backups? Does it make a difference that we use Apple computers? Alternatively, what are the best off-site methods like Mozy and Amazon?

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    Question by Oliver Hulland

pogoplug with external HD is an alternative.

Answer by dominique dejonghe

it took me 5 minutes to do the setup. Real easy to backup and share stuff.. And with the iPhone App I can have access to all of my music, streaming...


Answer by dominique dejonghe

I thought Pogoplug sounded great, until I learned two things: 1) it requires an Internet connection to work, and 2) it's dependent on the Cloud Engines Inc (Pogoplug manufacturer) servers. So if your Internet connection is down or Cloud Engines goes offline, your Pogoplug becomes an expensive paperweight.

Other facets to this that (IMHO) might be of concern when considering it for backups are the fact that even though the files you're backing up and the backup drive you're saving them to are both on your local network, every file access has to involve an exchange of data with Cloud Engines' servers over the Internet, and the fact that Cloud Engines' privacy policy is a little on the vague side as to what information they might be sharing with others about you or your files.

If another company offered a similar product without these issues, I wouldn't hesitate to snap it up, but until then I too am searching for a more convenient solution for the backup problem.

Answer by ealmasy

I personally use a ReadyNas NV+ to handle my Time Machine backup and network storage needs. Time machine is easy to set up, and this little box can handle quite a bit, although it's not exactly a powerhouse. I use mine for DLNA streaming to my PS3, file sharing to 4 Macs, a Windows computer, an iPad and 3 iPhones, iTunes music sharing, BitTorrent, and ReadyNas Remote for remote file viewing, as well as Time Machine. Right now I have 1TB dedicated to Time Machine, and it has no problem backing up my 400GB Aperture library. http://www.readynas.com/?cat=4

There is also the smaller, two-bay ReadyNas Duo that is based on the same internals, and can handle the same workload. I owned one before trading up to the four-bay NV+. http://www.readynas.com/?cat=3

I owned the Duo for about three months before trading it in, and my NV+ has been chugging away since October with no problems with 4x2TB drives. You will want to do your first backup over a wired, preferably gigabit connection, due to problems Time Machine has with backing up constantly changing Spotlight indexes. Once you have the first backup out of the way, the wireless backup works perfectly.

There is also a very active user forum that has been extremely useful, and there are other features that I haven't gotten into, such as photo sharing and a rudimentary web server.

If you go this route, I would also highly recommend adding the iStat plugin with it's companion iPhone app ($0.99). It is perfect for monitoring CPU, RAM, Network and Disk usage to pinpoint exactly what is going on inside that headless box in your computer room.

Answer by jmello

I have been using Crashplan for the past 6 months or so, with user files on our multiple local computers backing up to an external drive. The contents of this drive then backup to a drive at work via the tubes, creating a private "cloud". I have watched backups occurring on our LAN while the internet was down, and according to their FAQ this is possible but not guaranteed unless you buy the PRO plan:http://bit.ly/jz1PeI

Answer by chaddley
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