Dear Apple...

Now precisely what use is this to anyone? I can't back up my files in a usable fashion because I want my home directory to be secure? I have to log out to achieve even the monolithic protection of being able to restore my entire home directory in one lump? I don't log out; I lock my system and hibernate it; it's a single user system and the hibernation works extremely well.

And to add insult to injury, this is the error message I get *after* spending hours decrypting and re-encrypting my home folder, discovering backups were silently failing, and turning TimeMachine off and on again. The first time I tried this after upgrading from Tiger I was told that "Your home folder cannot be backed up as it was encrypted with a previous version of OS X. You will need to turn FileVault off and on again to enable Time Machine backups" (this is not verbatim, I didn't expect to need to screen grab it). And I get a little help dialogue (or possibly a link to a video, I don't recall now) showing me how to do this, and how to chose 128- or 256- bit security. Except that when you try and to that, it gives you no such choice, takes hours to de- and re-encrypt, and still doesn't let you back up anyway!

It would appear that the FileVault and TimeMachine teams at Apple are not on speaking terms, and that neither are giving correct information to the documentation team. This is shoddy, and the differing dialogues suggest that this is an incomplete feature that was rushed to release.

For now, I'll be sticking with Retrospect backup. That backs up what it claims, including FileVault folders, encrypts the backups on request, and restores properly. The interface isn't what you'd call user-friendly, but still it's a bit more friendly than a system that turns around and says "Oh, I didn't back any of your personal files up - didn't you guess?"
Posted by parsingphase, 2007-10-29 23:07

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