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Retrospect again

October 31, 2007 — Leave a comment

UPDATE 24 March 2009: Retrospect 8 for Mac OS X has been released!

Just saw this on MacNN: EMC Retrospect 8.0 on chopping block? (ok, it’s months old), so it looks like version 8 definitely isn’t coming to the Mac. Is it just me or does this seem like an opportunity for some hungry Mac developers to build a really good backup system that suits Small Office Networks, has provision for offsite backups like Retrospect does, but sports a swish Cocoa interface and is Universal?

Because basically Time Machine covers local backups but doesn’t serve the same ‘Backup Server’ role that Retrospect Workgroup does…

I know there are some good small backup apps for the Mac out there, but do any backup a network of Macs and provide backup set management?

UPDATE 24 March 2009: Retrospect 8 for Mac OS X has been released. So, given the limitations of Leopard’s Time Machine, it might be worth a look…

…At least in our office. With the imminent arrival of Leopard, my attention’s turned to the upgrade process. At the moment, the only application that I can foresee having problems is Retrospect. No real reason for that, other than it’s not Universal and is generally old and clunky! But Time Machine might take care of most of our backup needs pretty simply, so I’m considering just ditching Retrospect. The only snag is that we do offsite backups with Retrospect – every week I retrieve one drive and send the other.

So how to replicate the offsite part of the backup system? If Time Machine supports multiple drives and therefore Multiple backups, it would be simple. Perhaps an online system, e.g.: .Mac or S4? Is Apple doing this to drive more customers to .Mac?

I’m in two minds about the departure of Retrospect, it really is flexible and it has done a great job, but the interface is arcane and non-Intel native (and with no upgrade in sight!). It also requires a bit of administration overhead, so I’m angling to reduce that and go for a more Mac-like backup experience – it should just work!