Ways to back up or protect your files
Your photos, music, documents, and software are important. There are several easy ways to protect them.
Time Machine backs up photos, music, movies, and documents that are stored on your Mac. After you set up Time Machine, it regularly backs up your Mac without any more effort on your part. See Connect a new backup disk to your Mac.
You can use iCloud Drive to safely store documents in iCloud, so you can retrieve them when needed and access them from all of your computers, and iOS and iPadOS devices. If you like, you can have all the files in your desktop and documents folders stored automatically in iCloud Drive. See Use iCloud Drive to store documents.
You can use iCloud Photos to safely store all the photos and videos in your photo library in iCloud, so you can retrieve them when needed and access them from all of your computers, iOS and iPadOS devices, and Apple TV, and on iCloud.com. See Use iCloud Photos to store photos in iCloud.
CDs and DVDs
You can create a burn folder that contains all your important files. Whenever you want to back up the latest versions of those files to a CD or DVD, simply open that burn folder, then click Burn. See Create and use a burn folder on Mac.
If you have a second hard disk, you can back up files by copying them from one disk to the other. To save space, compress an item before copying it to a backup disk; just select it, then choose File > Compress.
If your hard disk is divided into partitions, you can back up files from one partition to another. This solution isn’t as safe as other options because your backup may be lost along with the original files if your hard disk is damaged. For information about partitioning a disk, see Partition a physical disk.
If you need to back up more files than can fit on a single CD or DVD, you can use Disk Utility to create a compressed disk image of the files.