View Full Version : Why once a day only?

06-10-2009, 11:21 AM

In my previous post, I included a secondary question that got ignored -- I guess it's better to give it its own thread then.

I realize that Smart Update is fast enough that one could want to schedule a smart update every couple of hours (like TM does), but strangely enough the scheduler of SD assumes one only wants to schedule once a day (why is that? easy fix?)


-- Éric

06-10-2009, 01:20 PM
Answering to myself: I found that I can actually schedule the same process various times, so I can indeed have it run at several precise times during a day.

But this leaves the "periodic scheduling" question open: it would be fairly inconvenient to have to make 24 copies of the scheduling.

-- Éric

06-10-2009, 02:51 PM
It would, purposefully. I generally don't think it's useful to back up every hour... and the UI design reflects that.

06-10-2009, 02:59 PM
An advantage of backing up every (couple of) hour (or at least trying to), is precisely that you maximize the chances that the backup manages to run to completion at least once a day. (I'm talking as a laptop user that moves around quite a lot)

Because if I have only a couple of scheduled backups, it then becomes highly probable that you cannot backup fully (ie. without having to stop before the end) each day.

That brings a touch of obliviousness to the process of backing up that contributes to make TM successful.

I appreciate the technical superiority of the Smart Update vs. the way TM works (in particular, SD seems to be much faster, at least from my experience these last days, ie. typical run is less than 20 minutes in the background).

But it seems that this scheduling story is very much a subjective matter of taste, with not much technical difficulty behind. (I would imagine that adding a periodic scheduling would be a very easy addition for someone that was able to write the whole backup software).

So why not leave that up to the user? It can even be a very hidden possibility ("Advanced..."), but at least it should be easy to activate and configure for a user that purposely wants to have this behavior. No?

-- Éric

06-10-2009, 03:10 PM
SuperDuper! really isn't designed to work like this, though, even though it could be 'made' to. So, you have to create a number of schedules to accomplish your goal... or you could also edit the crontab to cause us to run more often if you'd like.

But the vast majority of people do not want to run every hour, or on a periodic basis more often than a day, so -- based on my general philosophy of keeping the UI as simple as possible, and not including hidden options -- that option isn't currently present.

If people's tastes/needs change, then we'll change with them, of course. But that's no the case now.

06-10-2009, 03:16 PM
I feel things are changing already, due in part to the higher computational power and disk space available, as well as the generalization of "one laptop for all use" approach.
This is something that I can feel in my professional niche (I'm a computer science researcher/university professor), and more generally, due to the widespread use of TM.

Of course in the end it's your decision...

-- Éric

06-10-2009, 04:06 PM
You could always make an Automator job that launches SD and then executes an SD backup. Save it as an "application" and use iCal to run the job as often as you want during the day.

Automator/iCal is a great tool that I use all over our network. I find a lot of Mac users have never really paid much attention to the power Automator/iCal provides in automating daily tasks on your Mac. There is literally no limit to what you can do with it. :)

06-10-2009, 06:26 PM
Thanks, I'll look into that more closely.

-- Éric

06-10-2009, 07:52 PM
While I was able to make an automator app that checks if my backup disk is mounted and, if so, runs SD, opens a given settings does a "copy now", I don't see how you can schedule this to run periodically with iCal (more than once a day, that is).

It seems the only alternative is to use a soft like Lingon, a frontend to launchd.

Any other suggestions? (in any case, while this will eventually work, it will be much more heavy/adhoc than having a simple "schedule every X" in SD itself)

-- Éric

06-11-2009, 06:39 AM
As I said, if you use CronniX (if you don't want to edit the crontab), you can easily set SD!'s cron job to run at multiple times.

06-11-2009, 12:51 PM
Thanks, this works (taking the SD app as explained in the OneTouch FAQ), and using launchd (seems to be the preferred way over cron in the new versions of OSX) for periodic scheduling.

-- Éric