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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Time Machine Initial Backup question

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Member Since: Jun 26, 2010
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I Just got a WD Elements HD and did an initial backup connected USB to my MBP. It didn't take that long. Then I unplugged and attached to my Airport Extreme for wireless backups, and when selecting the drive, it didn't have record of the previous backup and started the long initial backup again. Is this right, is there something I can do to avoid this? Thx
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Can I assume that you used Time Machine to do the initial backup when the drive was directly attached to your Mac? If so, here's what happened:

When Time Machine is directly connected to a Mac it places backups in a folder. Within that folder are a series of folders for each day. When you use Time Machine to backup over a network it stores the files inside an image file called a sparsebundle. As far as Time Machine is concerned these really are two different things. There is a procedure to move the original backups inside a sparsebundle but it can be a pain.

The easiest thing is probably to start the backup again with the drive attached to the Airport Extreme. For the first backup connect the MacBook to the Extreme via Ethernet. It will be much faster. Subsequent backups should proceed fine wirelessly.

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