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by Mike | July 7, 2017

There's a lot of excitement these days about the new APFS filesystem coming from Apple. I'm certainly excited about it; some of the promised features sound great. However, I'm going to make a bold suggestion: Don't convert your production startup disk to APFS this Fall. Wait for the new filesystem to get some more mileage before making the switch. HFS+ is still a supported configuration for High Sierra, and sticking with the tried-and-true filesystem may save a lot of headaches and wasted time.

Mutual Unreadiness

With just over three years of development and only 13 months of exposure to the developer community, it should come as no surprise that developers (and now some end users) have run into some problems with APFS on the High Sierra beta. All of that is a normal part of Apple's beta testing process. What's not normal, however, is the lack of information available on APFS. The APFS documentation is a meager 10 pages. The documentation for snapshots: zero pages. There are literally two sentences in all of the APFS documentation that do no more than describe that snapshots are a part of APFS. More importantly, there's not really any technical "meat" to the documentation. Two pages describe the APIs that you can use to clone files, but aside from that, it's primarily a lightweight description of features. In comparison, the HFS+ documentation was 59 pages and contained highly technical descriptions of the filesystem format. Apple's documentation indicates that Apple intends to document the filesystem format, but that hasn't happened yet, and it's getting really close to go-time.

Lack of documentation is not a small problem. Basic questions remain unanswered, such as "How do I determine how much space a particular snapshot uses?" and "How can I determine if 'file Y' is a clone of 'file X'?" Here's a good one: how can I definitively determine how much space any particular folder really uses? Doesn't that sound like a weird question? What's alarming is that even Finder doesn't do this math correctly yet.

Snapshots are probably the most exciting and promising feature of APFS, but that aspect of the new filesystem simply isn't ready at all. In fact, it remains to be determined whether third-party developers will ever get access to snapshot APIs. That one needs to be repeated to sink in. The programming interface for creating and manipulating snapshots is not available outside of Apple, and there's absolutely zero documentation about how they work and how to manage them. Yet here we are, just months away from this filesystem being pushed into production on millions of Macs, and we can't use this... Read More

ccc

by Mike | June 7, 2017

Apple introduced macOS "High Sierra" this week, and along with many other developers, we've eagerly started dissecting the new operating system to see what's new. Like in past years, those living on the bleeding edge are wondering, "Will CCC work with this new OS?". Or perhaps "when" prepended to that same question. The short answer is that we have already posted a version of CCC that offers preliminary support for High Sierra. If you're running the Developer Preview of the new OS, open CCC and choose "Check for updates" from the Carbon Copy Cloner menu to get the update. We've found a few issues of concern in the new OS. We addressed some of these issues in the current version of CCC; some will be dealt with in future beta updates as we continue testing.

Will I have to pay for an update to CCC that works with macOS High Sierra?

When we have completed CCC 4 qualification on High Sierra, we will issue an update to CCC 4 that is free to all current CCC 4 license holders.

Will CCC work with Apple's new filesystem, APFS?

The current version of CCC 4 already works with APFS insofar as CCC can copy files to and from that filesystem. The current version can also make bootable backups from an APFS startup disk to an HFS+ formatted destination volume – we've already tested that, and in the little bit of testing that we've done so far, that works great. The current feature set of CCC 4 will be qualified against High Sierra – creating bootable HFS+-based backups and working with CoreStorage encrypted backups will be qualified and functional (barring any OS bugs) and we aim to complete that by the time Apple ships High Sierra in the Fall.

Creating a bootable APFS volume, however, is brand-new territory. The semantics of starting a Mac from an APFS volume are completely different from those of an HFS+ volume. We have established a procedure to create an APFS startup volume, though, and we've even created a proof-of-concept bootable APFS clone. What lies ahead is a massive amount of engineering work to build support for these new procedures into CCC. APFS encryption is also handled quite differently from CoreStorage encryption, so we have a lot of work to do in regard to building in support for automatically unlocking and mounting APFS encrypted backup volumes. We're aiming to offer new functionality for creating APFS bootable (and optionally encrypted) backups by the time Apple ships macOS High Sierra in the Fall.

Stay tuned to our blog for updates on our progress and other news from Bombich Software. This will be an exciting Summer!

by Mark | March 31, 2017

Don't be an April Fool!

We all know the importance of backing up your important data — but many of us put it off until it's too late. Today, on World Backup Day, it's time to finally take that step into backing up those photos, documents, movies and music that you know you should be protecting.

To help make it even easier to get started, Bombich Software is offering a 25% discount on Carbon Copy Cloner 4 all weekend!

 

Buy CCC for 25% off
  or  
Buy as a Gift

 

 

World Backup Day
by Sarah | March 29, 2017

In honor of World Backup Day, March 31, we want to help ensure you've been backing up all of your important data. Hopefully you have a Carbon Copy Cloner backup routine in place, but have you checked up on your backups lately?

Here are some things to check:

Need help? Launch CCC and choose Ask a Question About CCC... from the Help menu.


Share World Backup Day with your friends and family! 

Do you know someone that needs to back up their Mac? To celebrate World Backup Day, we are offering a 25% discount on Carbon Copy Cloner household licenses through Monday April 3, 2016.


 

ccc

by Mike | June 13, 2016

Update September 16: CCC 4.1.10 qualified on macOS Sierra

Choose "Check for Updates" from the Carbon Copy Cloner menu to download the latest update. And be sure to update your backup before upgrading to Sierra!


Apple announced macOS Sierra today, and as soon as they make the developer pre-release available, we're going to start the process of qualifying CCC 4 against that OS. We'll start with a shorter collection of tests that verifies that nothing harmful is going to happen if you use CCC on that OS. Once that pre-qualification is complete, we'll post a beta release of CCC 4 that folks can use for testing on the new OS. Over the summer, we'll continue the full regimen of qualification and testing, and once we're happy with the results of our tests, we'll post an update to CCC 4 that runs on Sierra.

Will I have to pay for an update to CCC that works with macOS Sierra?

When we have completed CCC 4 qualification on Sierra, we will issue an update to CCC 4 that is free to all current CCC 4 license holders.

What happens if I try to run the current (stable) release of CCC 4 on macOS Sierra?

CCC 4.1.9 will open on Sierra, but you'll be greeted with a message stating that CCC isn't yet qualified on Sierra. For more information about how and why CCC presents this message, see Coping with Apple's pace of innovation in an application that can delete files.

Update June 23: CCC 4.1.10 beta posted

Our preliminary testing turned up a couple really minor issues, which we've addressed and rolled into a beta release of CCC 4.1.10. If you would like to participate in CCC's beta testing program, open the Software Update section of CCC's Preferences window, check the box next to Inform me of beta releases, then click the button to check for updates.