View Full Version : SuperDuper Set-up with Drobo: .sparseimage vs. partitions

12-19-2008, 09:19 AM
First, thanks to Dave for reaching out to me on Twitter and suggesting posting here for set-up advice. Beyond software, it's the people that can make applications rock!

So...my back-up hard drive just died (WD MyBook POS). I'm on an Intel Mac running Leopard. The old HD was set-up into 4 partitions:
- Time Machine (double the MBP HD size)
- SuperDuper (same as MBP size, running periodic Smart Updates)
- Backups rsync'd from Linux box
- Misc back-ups

I decided to replace it with a Drobo (http://drobo.com). In doing research on the best way to set it up, reviews on multiple partitions are mixed because Drobo doesn't support OS X's partition moving (although people seem to have successfully done it). So as you add capacity, you wind up having to just add more partitions.

One solution I was looking at was the use of .sparseimages to create volumes for TM and SD. This would allow Drobo to have just one expandable partition, yet have max-sized volumes for backups. Some of this guidance came from: http://cli.gs/UnQpGP

I don't have much experience creating or using sparseimages, or using with SD. I would appreciate any feedback, recommendations, settings, or configuration guidance.

Thanks and happy holidays!

- Josh

12-19-2008, 09:50 AM
It's easy enough to create a sparse image (SD! will do it for you), but it's always better -- always -- to write directly to a drive if you can, for both TM and SD. It's less indirect, easier to recover from if something bad happens (a 'hit' to a file won't take down the whole drive, whereas a damaged image is often unrepairable), etc.

So, while it might be less flexible, I'd make a TM partition, a SD! partition and then a larger partition for your other use... and that large one is the one that'll grow when your Drobo gets additional capacity (since your base partition is the full virtual volume size).

Make sure to use GUID partitioning!

08-23-2009, 11:35 PM
I am a little confused about using DROBO, which I bought with Time Machine and Super Duper. Digital Robotics says there machine is bootable on their website, but recommended against creating a bootable disc. If I need to recover from a disaster, I think I need to boot from the Super Duper Backup disc. Is this correct?

08-24-2009, 07:07 AM
Yes: see my response to your support email (and the "Recovering from a disaster" section of the User's Guide).