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Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Apple BDR and Why Is Boston Iron Unique ?

Boston Iron is the only provider offering full Apple Macintosh Time Machine compatible Backup, Data Recovery and Virtual Recovery. Our service goes beyond other offerings:

  • We’re fully Apple Time Machine compatible. This means that you can use all of Time Machine features and functions to do your hourly backups, restore individual files or folders just like you could if you were using a local Time Machine backup disk or Apple Time Capsule.
  • All of your hourly backups are pushed to our data centers so they are out of harm’s way.
  • Verifying and keeping the integrity of your data. Checksums help establish the integrity of all your backups, so we not only checksum everything but we keep multiple copies so we can automatically fix any problems we find. We are set up to not only recover your data, but to recover your machine. We can re-create and spin up your machine in our cloud facility and provide you with remote access to it.
  • We can recover your data from the backups and create an image for you that can be restored onto your new Mac as part of Apple’s standard installation process. Nothing weird to do, nothing hard to do. Its designed to just work.

What is Virtual Recovery ?

Virtual Recovery for Apple Macintosh computers is unique to Boston Iron. With it, we can recreate your Apple Macintosh exactly as it was before it crashed (or worse). And we can do it in our data centers so that you’re back to work quickly.

Once we’ve got your new Virtual Apple Macintosh online, we will provide you with a web site you can connect to from another machine and you’ll be back working. We will also create a special login that you’ll need before you can connect, of course!

Depending on the services you’ve selected, you can even spin up your machine locally on Boston Iron provided Apple Mac Mini or Mac Pro.

Why Do I Need a Membership Invitation Code ?

Boston Iron was founded to provide a 100% solution for businesses who need a full Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution with an eye toward regulatory compliance. That means that we can’t just sell a cloud service and a piece of hardware and walk away, we need people trained on our service who can work with your business to help ensure that we can meet your requirements.

Depending upon their size and requirements, we can only bring a certain number of businesses online per month and do a great job at it. As a boutique BDR provider, and the only provider in the world of full BDR for Apple computers, we want to make sure our implementation meets all our customer needs.

How Long Might I Have to Wait ?

Apple Time Machine compatible backup and data recovery technology is exclusive to Boston Iron, and being a boutique provider we want to make sure everything is a right fit for you.

We hate to say it, but it depends. Our exclusive Apple Time Machine backup service can be put online in just a few minutes for each machine. If you’d like our local recovery option, we’ll have to ship you a Mac Mini or Mac Pro to run the recovered machines on. Our “Virtual Machine Recovery” and our Time Machine compatible recovery can usually be brought online in 24 hours.

How Does Your Time Machine Compatible Backup Work ?

Whether you’re using our local BDR solution, or the remote solution, we provide a Time Machine target for your Apple MacIntosh Computer. You connect over the network to our local appliance, or via a secured VPN to our servers. Time Machine will perform its hourly backups to us and you can use it to recover lost files or folders.

How Do You Transmit My Data ?

We use an SSL-based protocol and 2048-bit or bigger keys during transmission of your data. This is known to provide a highly-secure tunnel for data and is used by everyone from banks and hospitals through government agencies to secure their sensitive data.

How Do We Assure Data Integrity ?

From the initial get-go, we transmit your data using an encrypted and checksummed tunnel. This helps to ensure the integrity of your data before we even get it.

Once we have the backup, we retain three copies of it and checksum every bit of your information weekly to make sure there has not been any corruption on our side. If any corruption is detected, your backup is automatically repaired…

How Large a File Can We Back Up ?

There is no limit to the size of any file that will be backed up. The only restrictions on size are tied to the total size of your backup pool, and that is determined by the Boston Iron service level you’ve selected.

What Restrictions Are There to the Type of Data ?

There are no restrictions to the type of data you’re backing up. As long as it can be stored on your Apple Macintosh, we can back it up, recover it and do a virtual recovery.

There are no restrictions on Movie files, Audio files, CAD drawings, X-Rays, etc. None at all.

Which Directories Are Backed Up ?

Everything is backed up. Including:

  • All files in your home directory
  • All of your Applications
  • All of your passwords, webform information and your keychain
  • All of your browser bookmarks, passwords and even your open tabs

Unlike all other products, we are making a recoverable backup of your entire Apple Macintosh.

Can You Backup Locally Attached Disks ?

We automatically back up all locally attached hard disks, thumb drives, cameras, etc. In fact, if you want to save space in your plan you’ll have to manually exclude devices that you don’t want to have backed up.

Apple’s Time Machine does not automatically backup all devices, so make sure you check your configuration to ensure the drives you want to be backed up are being backed up.

If you’re using our Virtual Recovery option, make sure you let us know if you need to have your attached drives included in the recovery. Otherwise, you can restore those attached disks when you rebuild your machine.

Can I Run Graphical Applications While in Virtual Recovery ?

The short answer is “yes.” The longer answer is that your Virtual Recovery machine does not have much GPU power and you’re connecting to it via the Internet and a web browser. We don’t specifically restrict it in any way, but you probably don’t want to do a lot of manipulation of heavy graphics while in Virtual Recovery mode.

Ideally, you’ll have us create an external drive for you that we can ship to you. That drive will let you restore your old machine to a fresh install of Apple’s OS/X.

Where Did the Technology Come From ?

The technology behind Boston Iron was originally developed by one of the oldest Managed Service Providers (MSP) in the country for use with its own clients. They had been using it for years to backup and restore their own machines, and then rolled the technology into an offering for their clients. Because of the effectiveness of the base product, Virtual Recovery was added to the BDR suite and Boston Iron was formed to work with other MSPs to bring the product to market.

So, far it has helped clients recover from:

  • Fires
  • Flooding
  • Disk Crashes
  • Theft

What Type of Apple Macintosh Computers Will Boston Iron Work With ?

It works with all Apple Macintosh computers with Mac OS/X that supports Time Machine. That means anything running OS/X Leopard (late 2007) or later. It works equally well with MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMacs, Mac Pro, xServe, etc.

Can Boston Iron Backup iPads/iPhones/iPods Off-Site ?

It will back up all iOS devices that are syncing via iTunes to an Apple Macintosh that is being protected by Boston Iron BDR. The iOS backups will be automatically placed into the Time Machine backups for the machine, and will be copied to our remote data centers.

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