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Other Hardware and Peripherals Other Apple systems and peripherals discussion.

External Hard drive / Time Machine backups question


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MorganaMoonston

 
Member Since: Mar 02, 2010
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Hey all, new to the site and wanted to ask this very quickly before I really mess things up on my computer.

I have a Macbook pro that I bought a few years back. I started Time Machine backups fairly quickly, I used a My Book and kept up with the updates. Then, I moved in with some people during an internship. After my internship, I came home and realized my external had been stolen. I was furious, since I had all my info on there (over 3 years!), and I demanded to know who took it, but none of my roommates fessed up.

So now I have a problem; I bought a brand-new hard drive and I'm rarin' to go, but I wanted to see if there was any way i could possibly get my info back from my other drive. Now I realize that without the old drive, it's almost impossible, but if there's a slim chance, I want to know it! I ran Time Machine, and I don't have any info on there anymore.

I'm confused, upset, and hoping that there's something I can do to retrieve my information!

Any advice would help!!!!!
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EndlessMac

 
Member Since: Jan 17, 2010
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I'm sorry to say that if you don't have a secondary backup anywhere else then that data is gone. Also Time Machine should not be used to store your data because once it fills up your hard drive then it starts to delete old data to make room for new one. If you have been using it for 3 years then there is a good chance that your very old data might have been gone already.

TM basically has two functions. First it backups the current data on your computer and then it does a deletion of your old data if it's full. That depends on how much space you have on your external hard drive. The larger your external hard drive is the more it will keep old data. This is why you can retrieve old data but it should not be used for data storage.

If you want to use your external hard drive as a storage device as you seem to be doing then you should create a backup for it so this problem will never happen again. You can do this with a second external hard drive, with DVDs, or with online backup sites. If you don't trust your roommates then an online backup site might be a good solution for you and get some good security locks on your room door.
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MorganaMoonston

 
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Thanks for your help! I'm sad to hear about it, but I appreciate the advice. At least I know I'm not messing it up intentionally.

Thanks! :3
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EndlessMac

 
Member Since: Jan 17, 2010
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No problem about the help. It is an awful feeling to lose data but now you will know how to setup a good backup system so this will not happen again.

You should have two external hard drives. One used for Time Machine and the other used for storage data (anything that's not currently on your computer but you want to keep). Then you can either use DVDs as a backup to your external storage data or use an online backup website. As I've said earlier an internet backup site might be good for you if people keep stealing stuff from you.
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