MacDirectory Magazine

Fall-Winter 2010 (#43)

MacDirectory magazine is the premiere creative lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts featuring interviews, in-depth tech reviews, Apple news, insights, latest Apple patents, apps, market analysis, entertainment and more.

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104 MacDirectory REVIEW SUPERDUPER Computer users know that it is not "if" the hard drive will crash but "when." We all read about the calamities happening to "everyone else" but we know it will never happen to us. Right? While browsing VersionTracker Mac OS X Weekly I ran across a listing for a backup program named SuperDuper. With nothing better to do at the time, I decided to take a look at the Web site and download the application. Curiosity you know, and maybe even an evaluation. SuperDuper was a creation of David Nanian and, in his words he has a thing about clothing so the company name is Shirt Pocket. Past developments included UnderWare in 1983, co-founded with Michael Strickman and BRIEF, now owned by Borland. After working for Compuware's NuMega lab for a few years, he decided to set off on his own and created Shirt Pocket, "Software for an audience of one: You." I downloaded and installed SuperDuper in my MacBook laptop that travels with me when I am on the road and gets a lot of hard use. I was beginning to worry about the hard drive and was using Time Machine to back up certain files but I had not gone to an external backup hard drive at the time. The installation was quick and uncomplicated. Not a normal action for me, but I even printed out the very complete SuperDuper User's Guide. I was truly impressed. Easy-to-read instruction, excellent screen shots and lots of details. There are two versions of SuperDuper. The unregistered allows easy, complete backup to partitions, FireWire drives, and image files. The registered version allows you to schedule backups, quickly update backups with Smart Update, select specific copy modes and fully customize the copying process. All sorts of great features. I contacted David by e-mail regarding his program and he got back to me "from a 30-mile bike ride." Now that is what I call great customer service. He does a lot of bike riding for relaxation but takes his Blackberry along just in case a customer needs help. He provided a upgrade registration and I was on my way to taking a close look. One day later MY HARD DRIVE CRASHED! I knew it had some mechanical problems but I had been waiting to replace it. Waiting for my budget to be in better shape. I had begun using a 460 Gb external drive for backup and SuperDuper had done its job. I was immediately able to reboot using the external drive and SuperDuper as a boot program. I had all of my files except for my e-mail program. The hard drive had done its dirty deed in the middle of my working with Entourage (MS Office 2008 for Mac) and I could not recover it. I e-mailed David and got an immediate response and suggestions as to what action I should take. Again, great customer service and technical assistance. This man is a marvel. I ordered a much larger SATA hard drive for my MacBook and even upgraded the memory. Figured I might as well do everything at one time. Since the crash took place on a Friday evening I could not get overnight shipping until the following Monday. In the meantime I kept right on working (reinstalled Entourage and began rebuilding my e-mail address book) using SuperDuper and the external drive as my boot disk. It worked perfectly. My replacement hard drive and memory chips arrived Tuesday morning by FedEx and I began my repairs. Installation of the new hard drive and memory chips took but a few minutes and I was on my way. A quick command to SuperDuper to copy to the new hard drive and within a short period of time all was well again. A test of the old hard drive in a USB enclosure provided absolutely no recovery of any data. For an excellent backup and recovery program, I highly recommend SuperDuper by Shirt Pocket and David Nanian. You can find SuperDuper and Shirt Pocket at and it is compatible with Snow Leopard. Go for it! You won't regret it. WORDS BY LEE GRIGGS

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