While what Time Machine does is surprisingly complex, setting it up and using this feature is quite simple. Selecting a backup destination To start setting up Time Machine, you need to have a backup destination — the device on which your files will be backed up. Time Machine can back up to many devices:. How often does Time Machine back up your Mac, and for how long? Time Machine performs a full backup of your Mac when it is first set up. This initial backup can take some time, so be patient and allow it to finish. Once the first backup is complete, Time Machine checks your Mac for new, changed, and deleted files once every hour.
Time Machine keeps these hourly backups for the past 24 hours, then keeps a daily backup for the past month. Setting up Time Machine With a properly-formatted and empty external drive, setting up Time Machine is simple — just connect it to your Mac. The external disk you have purchased from OWC may or may not be formatted in the format that Time Machine needs. Before you let it reformat the drive, realize that doing so completely erases all files on the external drive. Either a Mac or iOS device can be used to set up and configure the AirPort Time Capsule; full instructions for the setup process are included with the device, or can be downloaded here.
The preference pane looks like this:. As before, you can select to encrypt your backup. The backup begins. Be sure to leave your Mac on so that Time Machine is able to capture all of the information. The extra arrow in this icon indicates that Time Machine is working on a backup.
On older versions of Time Machine, the arrow would move in a circle, which many Mac users found to be endlessly distracting. Selecting this menu while pressing the Option key provides the option of verifying backups or even switching to a different backup disk. Restoring files or versions of files from Time Machine Backups The entire reason you use Time Machine to back up your Mac is to be able to retrieve accidentally deleted or corrupted files, or to restore an entire system if your primary usually internal storage fails. Your Mac display transforms into something that looks like this:. On the right side of this window is a timeline showing various dates and times back until the oldest backup saved by Time Machine.
To reach a specific point in time, click on the appropriate line on the timeline. You can search from the Time Machine Finder window by typing a search term into the Search field on the top right of the Finder window.
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Use Quick Look before you restore it by just pressing the space bar once you have selected the file. Right-clicking or control-clicking on a file in the Time Machine window display additional options. Every version of the document that has been saved appears on the screen in the now-familiar Time Machine timeline. Restoring a Mac From a Backup One of the most depressing situations a Mac user can run into is having a primary storage device fail.
If the Time Machine drive is on the network — a AirPort Time Capsule, for example — make sure that the Mac is on the same network before proceeding. When the Apple logo appears on the screen, you can release the keys, and the Mac boots up from the Recovery partition stored on the drive and into OS X Utilities. Next, select the Time Machine backup. You may be asked to enter a name and password to connect to the backup disk. If requested, enter the appropriate information, then click Connect. A list of the dates and times of backups appears.
Back up your Mac with Time Machine
Select the one you want — usually the most recent — then follow the onscreen instructions to restore all data and settings onto your Mac. Once the system has been restored, Time Machine will probably perform a full backup at the next scheduled backup time.
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This is perfectly normal, and the hourly backups begin again once the full back is done. Name required.
Email required. Leave this field empty. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. I understand that time machine only knows up to 14 January what happens after that please. Is a new system in the pipeline? It must be building an image of sorts. Can there ever not be enough room on the system drive that would prevent a backup? If I have time machine backups from a previous older computer on external disks can I find and retrieve files from those backups on my current machine with a different version OS?
I need to retrieve photos.
Time Machine (macOS) - Wikipedia
I am doing a backup with an external harddrive and only as a result did I learn about the Time Machine Back Up. I just did this with the external and tried to open my photos when the back up was complete to check that they were all there and it says it can not open because they are stored in Time Machine Back Up. Does that mean they are not on the external one as well? On a PC this is also true.
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You pay someone to get back the original files. Then the procedure is in summary …. Configure the brand new 2nd disk as a TM disk. Verify it — maybe just checking that all the files they should have a very similar count came across. So now the new TM disk should have all your data. You should run the TM backup again using the new TM disk.
Why the 4 TB Porche Design is nice? I Migrated everything from the old to the new in 2 hours. Time Machine backs up only the files that changed since the previous backup, so future backups will be faster. Use the same menu to check the status of a backup or skip a backup in progress. Information about products not manufactured by Apple, or independent websites not controlled or tested by Apple, is provided without recommendation or endorsement. Apple assumes no responsibility with regard to the selection, performance, or use of third-party websites or products.
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Risks are inherent in the use of the Internet. Contact the vendor for additional information. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. Create a Time Machine backup To create backups with Time Machine, all you need is an external storage device. Connect an external storage device Connect one of the following external storage devices, sold separately. Select your storage device as the backup disk When you connect an external drive directly to your Mac, you might be asked if you want to use the drive to back up with Time Machine.
If Time Machine doesn't ask to use your drive, follow these steps to add it manually: Open Time Machine preferences from the Time Machine menu in the menu bar. Select your external drive from the list of available disks.
Does Time Machine back up every file every time?
Enjoy the convenience of automatic backups After you select a backup disk, Time Machine immediately begins making periodic backups—automatically and without further action by you. Learn more Restore your Mac from a backup Other ways to back up and restore files If you back up to multiple disks, you can switch disks before entering Time Machine.
To stop excluding an item, such as an external hard drive, select the item and click the Remove — button. If using Time Machine to back up to a network disk, you can verify those backups to make sure they're in good condition.