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Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

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43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

A Tale of Disk Crashing Woe, and the Utilities That Saved Me

Apologies if I'm a little cranky, but I've suffered two hard drive crashes in as many weeks, and while I was able to recover somewhat gracefully, the aggravation of watching plodding status bars for hours on end while I wait for my data to load has been unbearable. Fortunately, my wife has employed Bobby Knight-proof safety features in our home office and chained everything to the desk, or else I would have chucked it all out the window.

But since I'm finally back online, I wanted to give a tip of the binder clip to three little programs that saved my bacon during these past two weeks, one crowd favorite and two lowly OS X utilities:

  • SuperDuper! - The People's Champ was responsible for idiot-proofing my backup process, so I had multiple pristine copies of my data. Worth every penny.
  • Disk Utility - The built-in OS X disk wrangler helped me juggle my various images and FireWire drives like a clown on speed.
  • Migration Assistant - But despite SuperDuper's and Disk Utility's heroic efforts, this little beauty was the clear choice for MVP. I don't know how I never knew there was a utility that could pull all my data, settings, and installed apps directly from one computer to another, but credit goes to the Michigan Avenue Apple Store Genius here in Chicago who tipped me off to this little gem, saving me from even more hours installing apps and tracking down license keys. A++++, would do business with again.

I had been planning to write a post wondering aloud as to why so many of you try to keep multiple machines in sync, but being stuck with one bare bones Mini and a dying MacBook Pro knocked some sense into me. The word of the day is redundancy, kids. I learned my lesson.

About wood.tang

wood.tang's picture


Matt Wood is a writer, former IT drone, sometime realtor, and full-time stay-at-home dad. He and his family live in Chicago.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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