I’m a computer guy.
In the beginning, life was simple. You had one computer – you kept your files on it. If you backed up, you did so to a floppy disk.
Today, I have a few computers, and I use them for different things, but I need my data on all of them. If they were all desktops, Life would be easy – keep all the files on one, then share it out to the rest. Add a laptop and things get messy.
What I want is to have a local copy of all my files, and have those automagically copied to and from the server whenever changes take place.
For that, I’m using SuperFlexible File Synchronizer. I’ve tried over a half dozen apps on the Mac for Sync and this one is by far the best. It’s also available in a Windows version, which is awesome, because one of my computers is a windows computer -that solves the problem of what to do there, and SF is available as a bundle that includes both versions.
What makes SuperFlexible better than the others? Control & Options. Superflexible lives up to it’s name. Do you need scheduled sync – no problem. Exclude .DS_Store? Got it. Need to sign into a Windows server before you run the backup? Done. I could go on and on – it seems to EVERYTHING. Here’s a few more things it can do – it can encrypt and zip each file so you can backup to internet based storage like Amazon S3 or Google without worrying about your data being exposed. It can detect when files move so they aren’t simply re-synced. It can add version numbers to your files when it copies them over. The interface is well refined too. When you run a sync, you can do so in the foreground or background – background is kind of like Autopilot, where foreground gives you a bunch of information – what files are going to copy, in what direction etc… Here’s an area that set this one apart – you can right click on any file before it’s synced, and tell it what direction to sync, to ignore it, to delete it from one but not the other etc..
I also found it rewarding that during testing, I wiped out the target folder, and on the next run, SF came up and asked if the folder should be re-created. (other tools have given an error in this scenario)
My setup is as follows:
I have a folder I keep all my stuff in. I keep a copy of that folder on my Mac Laptop, and another copy on my home server. On the Mac, I have a Sync job setup with SuperFlexible File Synchronizer that keeps things in both places up to date. This way, when I’m on my laptop, I’m always working with a local copy of my data. If I take the laptop on a trip, that data comes with me. When I get home, it copies it to the Server.
SuperFlexible File Synchronizer also has some other good qualities and I hope to use it for online backup soon as well. It supports backing up to Amazon S3, and Google storage support is in Beta as of this writing. It also supports FTP & Webdav folders (such as apple’s iDisk). And as mentioned above, it supports zipping and encrypting files which makes me far more comfortable using online storage as a backup target.