Archive for November, 2008

Retrospect for Mac and Apple Time Machine

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

I’ve been asked about the differences between Retrospect and Time Machine, and while I would love to say that Time Machine is only ideal for the individual user, it’s actually not that simple.

Retrospect is definitely our preferred backup solution for small to medium sized businesses, but we have successfully implemented Time Machine on servers for small user groups.  Since it’s built into Leopard, it can be a very cost effective backup system for a small office.  Time Machine is capable of backing up multiple Macs to the same backup drive, and it doesn’t require any scripts — it’s automatically scheduled to backup every hour.  However, Time Machine doesn’t do well with backing up large databases because it has to back up the entire database every time a change, no matter how big or small, is made.

That said, Retrospect is a more versatile and robust backup solution for the small to medium business environment, as you can create scheduled backups, backup cross-platform (Mac, Windows and Linux) computers in your network, backup to Tape, CD/DVD, FTP, among others.  This way you can take the backups that are kept on tapes or CDs to an offsite location for additional security.

EMC Retrospect X is scheduled to release on December 19, and promises a nicer interface with the OS X Leopard look and a remote management console, among other new features.  The EMC Retrospect X dev team just posted an update to their blog yesterday, and they think they will have new screenshots of the user interface posted by Friday.

Google Sync for BlackBerry update announced

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Like many New Yorkers (as I saw on NY1 the other day), a lot of our clients are BlackBerry users.  The BlackBerry Storm was released today, and I haven’t had a chance yet to take a look at it, but I wanted to let all you BlackBerry users know that Google Sync now has two-way contacts sync for Blackberry.  Google announced this a couple of days ago on its Mobile Blog.  I’ve had a few clients who use Gmail contacts and Google Calendar and have had some sync issues lately, so I know that this is going to be a big help to them.

Google has nice instructions on the Mobile Help section of its site.

Waiting for FM Touch 1.35

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Like many businesses, we use Filemaker Pro for our contacts database.  I use it to keep track of all of our clients and make notes on their setups, needs and appointments.  I also include all of my techs’ notes in there, so that whenever they visit a client, I can give them the past appointment notes.

I had emailed Stephen Knight of FM Touch a month ago, and he told me that the live server mode for version 1.35 of FM Touch will be out in mid to late December.  I’m psyched for the arrival of this updated version of the software, because then the techs will be able to use the FileMaker client on their iPhones to access the relevant data live from our server.

Stephen and his team are super nice and respond quickly to any questions or comments.  Their support seems fabulous as well.  You can follow Stephen and his team on Twitter to get the latest updates on FM Touch.

Twitterific and The Iconfactory

Friday, November 21st, 2008

I was looking around for an easy way to make posts to Twitter without having to use the Twitter website, and came across this nifty application called Twitterific, which was created by a cool software company called The Iconfactory.  Twitterific is a desktop widget that I can make as small or as big as I like and makes it easy to make posts and keep track of all of the people I am following throughout the day.

The Iconfactory makes loads of other great software, too, like iPulse, which shows you what’s going on inside your machine either on your desktop, in your menu bar or in your dock.  iPulse monitors a number of different stats, among them your disk usage, memory activity and usage and even the temperature of your motherboard.

Cool company worth checking out and keeping an eye on for new products.

P.S.  They’ve also teamed up with EMC Retrospect Dev Team and are desiging the icons for Retrospect X. on Twitter