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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Mar 31, 2008
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    385
    Question on Time Machine
    Hey guys, I have been an owner of two Macs now, and I am just about to get into using Time Machine. I have a question about Time Machine, so I hope you guys can help me out here.

    I am thinking about getting a 320G or 500G external hard drive. From my understanding, Time Machine saves "copies" of your entire computer from different times, and keeps everything there in place if you need to find something from the past. Right now, according to iStat Pro, I have used up 126.5G of the capacity on my iMac, so does that mean that Time Machine will make copies it over and over again, given that I do not add or erase anything from this point on? What if it runs out of space to back up, will it erase older versions of the content and put in new ones?

  2. #2

    nZa's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location
    Newport News, VA
    Posts
    242
    Specs:
    2.8Ghz MBP
    it will copy the full 126gigs the first update, but after that it pretty much only updates the files that are changed. I have about 80gigs of stuff in my hard drive and have been using time machine for about a year on a 500gig external drive, and still have 100gigs to go before it gets full.

    once it is full, as far as i know, it will delete older versions to make room for new, but not the oldest. it will just gap them out to once a month instead of once a week or day.

  3. #3

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 03, 2009
    Posts
    211
    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    It will just update files that have been deleted or moved from the area they were first in, as 'nZa' said.

  4. #4


    Member Since
    Mar 31, 2008
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    Do I have a choice when it comes to backing up once a day, per week or per month, and are those the only choices? Can I choose to back up once every, say, two weeks?

    Let's say I want to use my external hard drive for other purposes, and I plug it out and stuff like that. When I plug it back, while it resume the back up process or will it start over?

  5. #5

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 03, 2009
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    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    Yes, you have complete choice over when you want it to backup.

    And if it was in the middle of a backup and you removed the External HD, it would start the process over again once it is connected again.

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Mar 31, 2008
    Posts
    385
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Macintosh View Post
    Yes, you have complete choice over when you want it to backup.

    And if it was in the middle of a backup and you removed the External HD, it would start the process over again once it is connected again.
    By that do you mean a COMPLETE back up all over again or will it pick up from where it stopped?

    And is it possible for someone to make a screen cap of how the files in the external hard drive look like with Time Machine?

  7. #7

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 03, 2009
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    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    You can take screen captures

  8. #8

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 03, 2009
    Posts
    211
    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    It will start over again if you choose it to do so.
    It will come up with a notification windows that will say whether you want it to resume later, or whether you want it to stop and start over.
    But usually, it will automatically start a new backup when the External HD is reconnected.

    yes it is possible to take a screen cap.

  9. #9

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
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    Mar 03, 2009
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    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    Here is a screen capture I did when I was in Time Machine of some backups.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Mar 15, 2007
    Posts
    161
    Specs:
    17" MacBook Pro, 2.33GHz C2D, 2GB RAM
    By the way, you can set Time Machine to not backup certain parts of your file system in order to use your backup drive's space more effectively. For example, backing up your System folder might be wasteful of your backup space, since after a system crash you would just be reloading all of that from the OS X Leopard installation disks anyway. You can go into the Time Machine Options dialog to add these kind of backup exceptions.

  11. #11

    Mr Macintosh's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 03, 2009
    Posts
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    Specs:
    New iMac 20" Leopard vs. 10.5.7
    And by the way, did I mention, to take a screen cap, it's:
    cmd-shift-3

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