Friday, March 23, 2007


I've been looking for a file and folder synchronization tool for my Macs. OS X includes rsync but I wanted something with a nice GUI. There's RsyncX, but the couple of times I tried it I ran into difficulties. An open source program is always preferable, but I was prepared to buy a proprietary app as long as it had the functionality I need.

One advantage that a file sync tool has over something like Apple's, is that a sync tool just mirrors the contents of a folder to a backup device (in my case an external hard disk). You don't need the backup application to access your data on the backup, since your data is not stored in a proprietary format.

After some Googling this morning I decided to try our ChronoSync from Econ Technologies. I downloaded and installed the limited demo of v3.3. The GUI is well designed and intuitive. It appeared to work as advertised. I checked a couple of reviews online, noting that it got 5 stars at VersionTracker. MacWorld has a review of v3.0. Their only complaint was that some of the icons were ugly compared to what Mac users have come to expect. BFD.

I like it and wound up buying it. ChronoSync costs $30, and it's worth it in my opinion. One feature I like is the ability to create a "container," which contains other backup jobs. ChronoSync also includes an easy to use scheduler. I now have the program setup so that every Friday at 10:30 AM it runs a container which in turn calls backup jobs for my Documents, Library, Pictures, and downloads folders. If I want to, I can run each backup job individually, e.g., if I make some major changes and don't want to wait for the master weekly job to run.

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