Carbon Copy Cloner


Carbon Copy Cloner v4.1.13 by Harvey Rubinstein Jan 2017

Website: (been in business since 2002)

MSRP: $40

System Requirements: Mac OS X 10.8 through 10.12.6

Overview & Conclusion

The purpose of CCC (Carbon Copy Cloner) is to make bootable backups (full or incremental) on any schedule you desire.

I have no reservations in recommending CCC to any/all users, regardless of their skill level. Without doubt, CCC is a 5 star application!

Parenthetical: The developer of CCC, Mike Bombich, is himself a clone. Well, an identical twin…

Review Details

In the spirit of full disclosure, for several years I used the principal competitive product, SuperDuper! (SD), and always found it first-rate; both from a technical and support perspective.

So why the change?

Well, the simple answer is that with the passage of time, and as my computer skills increased, I appreciated the extra capabilities CCC provided. But make no mistake, there are a few minor disadvantages; these are noted below.

But before I go too far, be advised, comparing CCC with the competition harkens to “Printer Wars”. Some/much of your decision (CCC or SD) will boil down to what you, the user, prefer. But as for me, I find CCC superior to SD Of course, YMMV (your mileage may vary)!

Downloading and installing CCC is easy-peasy and the set-up is quite intuitive. And if you have questions, their tech support responds within a day or two; often within hours.


  • CCC supports cloning of the Recovery Partition (SD does not).

  • Can customize to NOT copy selected files.

  • If (during a backup) CCC encounters a corrupted file or files, it will "keep on going", trying to clone all the “good” files, then give you a report when it’s finished. SD would abort this cloning.

  • It is ideal for all levels, from beginner to genius.

  • I find that cloning back required less “cleanup” than does SD.

  • CCC respects Energy Saver Settings (on laptops).

  • Preferences & settings are easy to understand.

  • There are both simple and advanced settings.

  • There is a Safety Net feature that allows archiving those files replaced/updated in the target drive. Users can determine how much, if any, space is dedicated to this feature.

  • You can copy a Windows partition (but it won't be bootable).

  • Free 30 day trial, try before you buy.

  • License is for every Mac in your household.

  • Easy to edit tasks and their schedules.

  • Easy to customize backups, run scripts, etc.

  • Has a shell script to unmount backup disks upon copy so malware cannot attack your backups.

  • It is a perfect compliment to Time Machine.


  • Clone History cannot be cleared per target volume. Rather, clearing the history clears all CCC History.
  • SuperDuper! has a SandBox feature which is very nice for software testing; CCC has no such feature.
  • SuperDuper! will backup a Time Machine, CCC will not.
  • SuperDuper! is $12.00 cheaper.


  • Cloning time, via CCC or SD! is essentially identical.
  • I know of no drive size constraints.
  • Note: Not all hard drive enclosures are capable of booting Mac OS. Check with the manufacturer of your hard drive enclosure to verify that booting from the enclosure is explicitly supported.