How many times has SuperDuper saved my bacon? Let me count the ways....
SuperDuper creates bootable backups of your Hard Drive.
It can run in the background while you're working.
You can take that backup to any other Mac computer and boot from it.
It's only $30.
It's super simple to use.
Are you convinced yet? I use a Macbook Pro every day for work. I carry it with me every day so it gets bounced around quite a bit, and as a result, I've already had two hard drive failures. But did I panic?? Nope -- Because I knew I had a SuperDuper backup waiting for me at home. Once I got the hard drive repaired, all I had to do was hookup the backup drive to my computer and use SuperDuper again to copy everything onto the new drive. Even while I was waiting for my computer to be repaired, I was able to work off my backup drive using a different Mac (another plus Mac OSX as well SuperDuper).
There's lots of backup solutions out there, but I've never seen anything as simple to use as SuperDuper. The instructions are incredibly clear. You pick a source drive, you pick a target drive, and then you click "Go". And just in case you're not sure which is source and which is target, the application spells out exactly what is going to happen. Just look at the screenshot included in the review.
Pressing "Copy Now" will use "Backup all files" to copy Macintosh HD to Backup...
I've looked for similar functionality on Windows, but to no avail. These guys must be doing some sort of black magic because there's nothing else like it out there. Even if you use Apple's built-in Time Machine, I still recommend complimenting it with SuperDuper. Time Machine can recover lost files, but if your computer won't boot, I'm not sure Time Machine is as easy to recover all files onto another computer.
Finally, if you're not convinced that the app is worth $30, they offer a free version which will still create a full working backup of your hard drive. The paid version just offers additional features like incremental backups (faster) and backing up to a disk image (single file rather than copy of entire directory structure). This should be the first application installed on any Mac.