The Easiest Way to Backup your Raspberry Pi SD card on OS X

To back up your Raspberry Pi SD  card follow these simple steps.

Command Line Approach

  • Step 1: Run diskutil list from the command line
  • Step 2: Determine the SD card of the Pi, and unmount it with diskutil unmount /dev/disk2s1
  • Step 3: Save the file to your hard drive with the following command: sudo dd bs=16m if=/dev/rdisk2 of=backup.img and to restore: sudo dd bs=16m if=backup.img of=/dev/disk2

If you are impatient you can hit CTRL + T to get status of the transfer

GUI Approach

There are many ways to back back up your Pi’s SD card, but I have found this one the easiest to remember how to do only doing it once or twice a year since it uses Disk Utility.

If you haven’t given Disk Utility “Full Disk Access” You will need to do these steps only once.

  • Step 1: In your Preferences go to > Security and Privacy > Privacy
  • Step 2: Hit lock button and enter password
  • Step 3: Hit the + button, search disk utility and add, save and close out

Once that is done backing up is easy and can be done with only a few clicks.

  • Step 1: Open Disk Utility, hit **⌘2**so all disks are shown
  • Step 2: Right click on the top level volume of the SD card you want to back up and select Image From ....
  • Step 3: Name the file what you want but before you save change the format from read-only to compressed or read/write depending on your needs.

That’s it folks! 3 very quick steps to backing up your Raspberry Pi SD card on a Mac! With the ISO file you can easily use Etcher to deploy the image on other Pi’s or replace a worn out SD card.

I hope you find this helpful!