ChronoSync takes the pain out of syncing between Macs
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

ChronoSync takes the pain out of syncing between Macs

If you have multiple Macs -- as many of us do -- you should certainly look into ChronoSync. The US$40 utility offers a way to synchronize or backup files and folders. You can synchronize between folders on your Mac, other Macs, PCs, external drives or anything you can mount on your Mac.

Let me admit that I mainly use ChronoSync for synching, as I have Time Machine and a Time Capsule that I use for my back-ups. What I really like about the software is its "intelligent" synchronization. It identifies and copies only the files that have changed since you last synchronized.

The most common need for synchronization is to simply maintain a redundant backup of your data. In this case, all the changes made in one target, the main target, will get copied over to another target, the backup target. You may never directly access the files on the backup target; they're there as a backup in case something goes wrong.

In this scenario, ChronoSync would be configured to perform a backup, blind backup or bootable backup synchronization. It does this well, but, as I mentioned, I use other products mainly for this (though you can certainly use ChronoSync along with Time Machine for double insurance).

Another common need for synchronization is to keep two sets of files that are actively modified in sync with each other -- which is how I use ChronoSync. My main computer is my 27-inch iMac. However, I also have a MacBook Air. I use the Econ software to perform a bidirectional synchronization between the two.

However, you can use ChronoSync as it best suits your needs. It uses a document based interface, which means that all your configuration settings as well as specific information about the set of files being synchronized are contained in a single document. This document may be saved anywhere on your computer's hard disk. Likewise, a ChronoSync document can be opened at a later date by simply double-clicking it from the Finder. This differs from an application-based interface where only a single set of data and options are presented.

ChronoSync lets you create two types of documents: synchronizers and containers. A Synchronizer document contains all the information necessary to synchronize two targets. A Container document contains one or more Synchronizer documents.
A ChronoSync Synchronizer document contains all of the information necessary to keep two targets synchronized with each other. This includes a reference to each target, the type of synchronization to be performed, numerous option settings to control ChronoSync's behavior and zero or more rules to inform ChronoSync of what type of files need to be synchronized.

A Synchronizer document also contains a snapshot of every file being synchronized in each target. This snapshot is referred to as the synchronization tree because it maintains the same hierarchical relationships of files and folders as they exist in your targets.

A Container document contains one or more Synchronizer documents that have been previously saved. So you can synchronize several Synchronizer documents in one step. You simply drag documents in and out (or click the Add or Remove toolbar icons) in the Documents panel.

Running a synchronization on a container will execute each contained Synchronizer document in the listed order. Synchronizer documents in a container can be rearranged by dragging them, affecting the order in which they run. In most other aspects, Container documents behave just like Synchronizer documents.

The synchronization operation is specified on a Synchronizer document's Setup panel. ChronoSync offers nine synchronization operations. These operations have five variants, Backup, Blind Backup, Mirror, Bidirectional and Bootable.
When it comes to, for example, synching a desktop and laptop, the first step to setting up a Synchronizer document is to decide which computer will be responsible for the synchronization.

Econ recommends that the "responsible" computer be the one that connects to the other. In my case, that means the "responsible" computer is my iMac, and the "target" computer is my MacBook.

One misconception that many users have is that they have to install ChronoSync on both computers and set up a synchronization document on both computers to perform a sync from one computer to another. Doing this isn't necessary; in fact, Econ doesn't even recommend it. Since ChronoSync has the ability to do bidirectional syncs, one document can analyze the contents of the files for both computers, synchronizing in either direction when necessary. Because of this, ChronoSync needs to be installed on only one computer.

If you are going to backup or synchronize to another computer you need to connect to it. There are two basic ways to connect to another computer: Network or Direct.
The Direct method is simpler and faster as you can connect two Macs via FireWire. But if FireWire is missing (a la the MacBook Airs), you'll have to use Ethernet or connect to shared computers and servers using a network address.

That may sound complicated, but it's really not, though you'll have to spend some time learning all the ins and outs. Basically, here's how it works: you set up a Synchronizer document to schedule and automatically mount volumes so your syncs and backups go smoothly. Archive your data and "go back in time" to restore and view older files. With ChronoSync, you can not only copy data, you can manage it too. You can exclude files and folders, check the current sync status of files, even run trial synchronizations to see what will happen before it happens.

ChronoSync also lets you create bootable backups. With it you can create a complete copy of your hard drive and boot directly into the backup. Additionally ChronoSync gives you full access to the entire hard drive so any files can be copied. The app also features a modified "Sync Engine" logic to use less memory and scan files faster, resulting in speedier synchronizations in most cases.

ChronoSync sports templates that provide the ability to create Synchronizer and Container documents with customized settings. The Setup panel contains a Readiness status that displays any issues between the two Targets being synchronized. The Archive feature now supports file compression saving you disk space.

There are lots more features of ChronoSync, but these are some of the highlights. If you want a fast, flexible tool for synching and back-ups, look no further.

Rating: 10 out of 10

Also, Econ offers a companion product: ChronoAgent. The utility runs on a destination Mac and communicates directly with ChronoSync. Normally, when you synchronize or back up to another Mac you mount it using file sharing. However, you only have the same access to that Mac as the user you mount as. This means that other user accounts and system files are off limits.

ChronoAgent bypasses file sharing, giving you full access to the destination Mac and eliminating the need to mount via AFP, SMB or other protocols. It can even match Users and Groups of files between two different Macs giving you full preservation of file ownership and permissions.

ChronoAgent runs in the background as an invisible application and is controlled in the System Preferences of your Mac. ChronoAgent only communicates with ChronoSync, meaning you need to have ChronoSync in order to communicate with ChronoAgent. ChronoAgent for Mac is a separate purchase and sells for $10.

ChronoSync and ChronoAgent for Mac will run natively on both Power PC and Intel-based Macs running Mac OS X 10.5 and higher. A demo is available for download.

 
AAPL
$99.02
Apple Inc.
+1.35
MSFT
$43.97
Microsoft Corpora
-0.53
GOOG
$590.60
Google Inc.
+1.58

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

OS X Yosemite Wallpaper 1.0 - Desktop im...
OS X Yosemite Wallpaper is the gorgeous new background image for Apple's upcoming OS X 10.10 Yosemite. This wallpaper is available for all screen resolutions with a source file that measures 5,418... Read more
Acorn 4.4 - Bitmap image editor. (Demo)
Acorn is a new image editor built with one goal in mind - simplicity. Fast, easy, and fluid, Acorn provides the options you'll need without any overhead. Acorn feels right, and won't drain your bank... Read more
Bartender 1.2.20 - Organize your menu ba...
Bartender lets you organize your menu bar apps. Features: Lets you tidy your menu bar apps how you want. See your menu bar apps when you want. Hide the apps you need to run, but do not need to... Read more
TotalFinder 1.6.2 - Adds tabs, hotkeys,...
TotalFinder is a universally acclaimed navigational companion for your Mac. Enhance your Mac's Finder with features so smart and convenient, you won't believe you ever lived without them. Tab-based... Read more
Vienna 3.0.0 RC 2 :be5265e: - RSS and At...
Vienna is a freeware and Open-Source RSS/Atom newsreader with article storage and management via a SQLite database, written in Objective-C and Cocoa, for the OS X operating system. It provides... Read more
VLC Media Player 2.1.5 - Popular multime...
VLC Media Player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats (MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DivX, MP3, OGG, ...) as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols. It... Read more
Default Folder X 4.6.7 - Enhances Open a...
Default Folder X attaches a toolbar to the right side of the Open and Save dialogs in any OS X-native application. The toolbar gives you fast access to various folders and commands. You just click... Read more
TinkerTool 5.3 - Expanded preference set...
TinkerTool is an application that gives you access to additional preference settings Apple has built into Mac OS X. This allows to activate hidden features in the operating system and in some of the... Read more
Audio Hijack Pro 2.11.0 - Record and enh...
Audio Hijack Pro drastically changes the way you use audio on your computer, giving you the freedom to listen to audio when you want and how you want. Record and enhance any audio with Audio Hijack... Read more
Intermission 1.1.1 - Pause and rewind li...
Intermission allows you to pause and rewind live audio from any application on your Mac. Intermission will buffer up to 3 hours of audio, allowing users to skip through any assortment of audio... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Traps n’ Gemstones Review
Traps n’ Gemstones Review By Campbell Bird on July 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: CASTLEVANIA JONESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Fight mummies, dig tunnels, and ride a runaway minecart to discover ancient secrets in this... | Read more »
The Phantom PI Mission Apparition Review
The Phantom PI Mission Apparition Review By Jordan Minor on July 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: GHOSTS BUSTEDUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad The Phantom PI is an exceedingly clever and well-crafted adventure game.   | Read more »
More Stubies Are Coming Your Way in a Ne...
More Stubies Are Coming Your Way in a New Update Posted by Jessica Fisher on July 28th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
The Great Prank War Review
The Great Prank War Review By Nadia Oxford on July 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: PRANKING IS SERIOUS BUSINESSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Though short, The Great Prank War offers an interesting and fun mix of action and... | Read more »
Marvel Contest of Champions Announced at...
Marvel Contest of Champions Announced at Comic-Con Posted by Jennifer Allen on July 28th, 2014 [ permalink ] Announced over the weekend at San Diego Comic-Con was the fairly exciting looking Marvel Contest of Champions. | Read more »
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Review
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Review By Jennifer Allen on July 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: DULL SWIPINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad The pizza power is weak when it comes to this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game.   | Read more »
Exploration Focused Puzzle Game Beatbudd...
Exploration Focused Puzzle Game Beatbuddy Set to Make Transition from PC to iOS this September Posted by Jennifer Allen on July 28th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
PlanetHD
PlanetHD By Nadia Oxford on July 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SPACE MADNESSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad PlanetHD will keep players busy for a while, though its unpredictable physics are a handful to deal with.   | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: July 21-25, 2014
Another Week of Expert App Reviews   At 148Apps, we help you sort through the great ocean of apps to find the ones we think you’ll like and the ones you’ll need. Our top picks become Editor’s Choice, our stamp of approval for apps with that little... | Read more »
Reddme for iPhone - The Reddit Client (...
Reddme for iPhone - The Reddit Client 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: News Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Reddme for iPhone is an iOS 7-optimized Reddit client that offers a refreshing new way to experience Reddit... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

iOS 8 and OS X 10.10 To Support DuckDuckGo As...
Writing for Quartz, Dan Frommer reports that Apple’s forthcoming iOS 8 and OS X 10.10 operating systems version updates will allow users to select DuckDuckGo as their default search engine. He notes... Read more
U.K. Hospital Using iPods and iPads To Record...
British news journal GazetteLive’s. Ian McNeal notes that the old “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” proverb is being turned on its head at http://southtees.nhs.uk/hospitals/james-cook/ James... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $1099,...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro available for $1099.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Their price is $100 off MSRP. Price is... Read more
Roundup of Apple refurbished MacBook Pros, th...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ and 15″ MacBook Pros available for up to $400 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. Their prices... Read more
Record Mac Shipments In Q2/14 Confound Analys...
A Seeking Alpha Trefis commentary notes that Apple’s fiscal Q3 2014 results released July 22, beat market predictions on earnings, although revenues were slightly lower than anticipated. Apple’s Mac’... Read more
Intel To Launch Core M Silicon For Use In Not...
Digitimes’ Monica Chen and Joseph Tsai, report that Intel will launch 14nm-based Core M series processors specifically for use in fanless notebook/tablet 2-in-1 models in Q4 2014, with many models to... Read more
Apple’s 2014 Back to School promotion: $100 g...
 Apple’s 2014 Back to School promotion includes a free $100 App Store Gift Card with the purchase of any new Mac (Mac mini excluded), or a $50 Gift Card with the purchase of an iPad or iPhone,... Read more
iMacs on sale for $150 off MSRP, $250 off for...
Best Buy has iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP for a limited time. Choose free home shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Prices are valid for online orders only, in-store... Read more
Mac minis on sale for $100 off MSRP, starting...
Best Buy has Mac minis on sale for $100 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup. Prices are for online orders only, in-store prices may vary: 2.5GHz Mac mini: $499.99 2.3GHz... Read more
Global Tablet Market Grows 11% in Q2/14 Notwi...
Worldwide tablet sales grew 11.0 percent year over year in the second quarter of 2014, with shipments reaching 49.3 million units according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation... Read more

Jobs Board

Sr Software Lead Engineer, *Apple* Online S...
Sr Software Lead Engineer, Apple Online Store Publishing Systems Keywords: Company: Apple Job Code: E3PCAK8MgYYkw Location (City or ZIP): Santa Clara Status: Full Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Sr. Product Leader, *Apple* Store Apps - Ap...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.