Parachute 1.0 review

It seems, these days, as though there are as many ways to back up your Mac as there are Rice Krispies in a box. Few are as easy to use as Parachute, though. While the focus has been on cloud services recently, like Carbonite and Syncplicity, Parachute is a more old-school tool – enabling you to back up target volumes, files or folders to a destination of your choice at a time of your choice.

So, why would you want to use Parachute instead of Time Machine? Let us count the ways. Even though everything takes place in one window, Parachute is highly configurable. You create a new backup task and name it.

Next, you select a destination for the backup. Parachute gives you two options: On this Mac or On Server. The latter choice enables you transfer files via FTP, WebDAV or to your MobileMe service.

That’s not the end of the program’s network capability though. Select On This Mac and you can choose any destination on your Local Area Network as well as external drives and local folders. We were even able to back up to a Windows machine without any fuss.

Backups can be scheduled daily, weekly or monthly. You pick a category then a time and Parachute does the rest. Being unable to specify dates might seem restrictive, until you take into account that you can set up as many backup tasks as you like.

So, you can have a Monday backup and a Thursday backup – each will copy the same files to the same place. Backups can be full or ‘smart’, meaning incremental. If you opt to do full backups, you can keep a specified number of previous copies so that you can backtrack if you need to.


Our advice? Keep Time Machine for full system backups and use Parachute for important files. It’s fast, friendly and a great price.

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