Cloning a Hard Drive

        Jim Hamm reports on his latest experience.  "After 4 - 1/2 years of using a Mac I finally decided to clone the SSD drive on my new MacBook Air. I've used Time Machine faithfully, but never a clone. After reading about cloning and talking to various people, I decided to purchase SuperDuper   which costs $28.
        "For the drive I purchased LaCie's Rugged Mini 500GB external 7200rpm hard drive. Cheaper drives can be found, but I wanted one that would withstand the rigors of travel.
        "The clone of my storage drive took 25 minutes with Super Duper (SD). When I first got the LaCie drive I formatted it to OS X (journaled) but found out I didn't need to do that. SD erases the drive first, before starting the clone. A day or so after the clone I had installed some other programs on my Mac and wanted to do an update to be sure I didn't lose them in case of a drive failure. SD provides a full set of operating instructions, and after reading what to do, I started SD to do a 'Smart Update,' which recognizes all the changes one has made and clones them. The 'Smart Update' took 4 minutes.
        "Well, will SD work when I need it? I hope so, and hope never to find out. One of the bloggers that I read frequently, John Gruber of Daring Fireball fame, recently lost his hard drive. He said that SD got him back in business very quickly. He has had occasion to use SD more than once. As the speaker at the PMUG meeting said yesterday, a hard drive will fail eventually. It's nice to know one's programs, pictures, research, etc., are safely cloned and ready for resurrection when needed.
        "My next step will be to do a clone of Zee's MacBook Pro, as she has lots of pictures and genealogy research she wouldn't want to lose."