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Backup & Restore Question

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I asked this question elsewhere a few days ago, and haven't had any responses. Hopefully someone here will have experience with this.


I am running 10.7.2 on a custom PC, and have been for about 7 months or so. It took nearly a week of daily effort to finally get up and running fully, but it was well worth it.


The machine has a single 2TB HDD, which is partitioned as follows: "Lion" partition, which is 500GB - "Disk" partition, used for storage, which is 1.1TB - "Time Machine", which is dedicated to my time machine backups, which is 400GB.


As I was very cautious when setting up OSX in regards to not following guides EXACTLY as they were written (it did take many tries), I didn't set up FileVault.


Now that I have been using the system for awhile, I would like to get FileVault setup (as, per my research, it is the only type of full disk encryption that isn't likely to screw up my OS install, especially in regards to a bootloader), but OSX notifies me that I must re-format the drive before it can be enabled.


So, my question is, is there any 100% (99.999% is acceptable too :) haha) safe method of backing up everything on my "Lion" partition, wiping the partition to encrypt it, then writing the data back exactly as it was, and WITHOUT messing up the bootability of my system?


This machine is my main machine, and my production machine, and I can not afford more than an evening of downtime, and I especially cannot afford to start from scratch with a fresh install of OSX again.


Any advice, suggestions, tips, or direction would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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If you format the drive and then use cloning software to "write the data back exactly as it was" then you will revert to the old format the drive was in!


Reinstall OS X on a different hard drive with Filevault enabled and then use the Migration Assistant to recreate your user with the data from the old drive.


Be careful: http://netkas.org/?p=1016

This shouldn't be a problem though, as long as you keep the source drive around you'll be able to use the boot loader installed on it to boot your new installation so that you can fix things.


Also, about Filevault: http://netkas.org/?p=1014

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to add on to what GV said I suggest that you also also create a bootloader on a spare flash drive just in case things don't swing your way and do make sure which every cloning program you use such as Superduper or Carbon Copy Cloner that you make sure that it does it to make the drive bootable.


I personally keep the bootloaders off my my drives and just keep them on flash drives for a more vanilla experience so I can always swap my drive into a real Mac and boot with no issues

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*Great advice*


Always keep a CD-RW or flash drive or anything with Chameleon on it that can boot your Hackintosh in an emergency.


Or an 8GB flash drive with Chameleon and the 10.6.3 retail DVD or app store Lion installer restored* to it so that you can run Terminal and Disk Utility.


*Disk Utility can do this

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