Currently Being ModeratedApr 15, 2012 11:51 AM (in response to hyster prynne)
I suggest the following:
Buy two external hard drives, each having twice the storage that you need.
Download SuperDuper. It is free in its simplest form, for a nominal fee you get better features.
Use SuperDuper to make a bootable "clone" of your drive. SuperDuper has detailed instructioons for that but it's very simple.
Run Time Machine (that's already built in to your computer) to make a second backup of all your files on the other external drive.
Now you have two backups, one a "clone" copy of your entire drive, the other a Time machine backup, which can be used to "restore" later on.
Currently Being ModeratedApr 15, 2012 11:53 AM (in response to hyster prynne)
One more thing ... if the instructions provided earlier intimidate you, I suggest you ask the Apple Store (or repair shop you go to) to make a complete backup of all your files before the repair. They will do this for a nominal fee, under $100 at the Apple Store, for instance. But I recommend doing it yourself, you can keep your files backed up that way after you get your computer back.
Currently Being ModeratedApr 15, 2012 12:29 PM (in response to hyster prynne)
I would recommend the external drive option. A recent backup for the hard drive is a good thing to have available; if you're lucky you'll never need it, but, but most computer users discover the need for one eventually.
If you can afford only one external drive for backup, suggest that you use only a cloning method (using SuperDuper or CarbonCopyCloner). Reason - a clone is a 'real' duplicate of the hard drive; it is bootable, amonngst other things (like being able to snag a copy of a single file quickly). A Time Machine archive is not bootable.