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Thread: How to open Apple Photos from Time Machine backup ?.

  1. #1

    johnboy676's Avatar
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    How to open Apple Photos from Time Machine backup ?.
    Hi, In Time Machine backup on ( MacOS Sierra ) I can open Files & Folders in Documents but canít open Apple Photos to view my Photos. Any help would be appreciated. ( Just started using Time Machine so go easy on me ).
    John.

  2. #2

    MacInWin's Avatar
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    Time Machine is not meant to be used that way. You can break TM doing that. TM is a backup system. Only TM should be poking about inside the TM backup. Those are mostly NOT files, just pointers to files and if you muck with them you break the links and the backup is broken.

    Why are you trying to run Photos from the backup? What are you trying to achieve? (and please give details on what Mac, what version of macOS you are using, too).
    Jake

  3. #3

    IWT's Avatar
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    +1 to all that Jake said. Leave it alone is the message.

    On the other hand, give us your problem in detail and we'll do our best to sort it out for you.

    If we do need to use Time Machine, we can take you through the proper way to do this.

    And welcome to our Forum.

    Ian
    Ian

  4. #4

    Slydude's Avatar
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    @John

    Are you trying to open Photos to work with the files or are you trying to recover something that was accidentally deleted?

  5. #5

    johnboy676's Avatar
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    Hi,
    I understand now that I can’t open Photos on Time Machine Backup, The only reason I wanted to open it was to check inside to make sure it had backed up all of my Photos inside, Am I right in assuming theres no way of being certain that all my Photos have been backed up, I now realise I can’t use Time Machine Backup to randomly open Folders & Files ( thanks for pointing that out ), I am using:- macOS Sierra 10.12.6 ( iMac 22.5” 2017 ).
    John.

  6. #6

    MacInWin's Avatar
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    OK, no problem. Assuming you are bringing in the images into Photos when you import them, there is a database of all those images that should be backed up as a database. You can see where it is by opening Photos, going to Preferences and on the "General" tab at the top of the window it will show the path to the database. What you can do is check to see where it is, then enter TM and go back to any date in the past, navigate to that location and see what the size of the photos database is and compare that with what it is on the regular place. If they are the same size, you can be reasonably comfortable that the entire database is backed up.

    About the only way to see if all the images are actually inside the database is to move the current database somewhere else, then store from TM the backed up copy and see if the images are there. Then delete the restored one and put back the current one. But that's not really necessary unless you are really paranoid, in which case what you really should do is to make a clone backup as well as a TM backup using something like Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper! to make the clone. And use two different drives, one for TM and a second one for CCC. And if you are REALLY paranoid like me, you then make a third copy onto a network attached drive of the really critical files and maybe even consider putting a copy on a drive that you store in a safety deposit box at your bank. (I haven't gone quite that far, yet.) Pick your level of paranoia and go with it!
    Jake

  7. #7

    Slydude's Avatar
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    OK johnboy I gave you a nice fuzzy welcome in the other thread and you repay me by asking what turns out to be a brain buster if a question. That is no way to treat a fellow forum member.

    Seriously, I can see why you would want to determine whether everything in your library has been backed up properly. As usual, Jake has provided some excellent advice.

    You would think that it would be as easy as looking at such parameters such as file size, creation and modification dates etc. for both the source (original) and backup. Turns out, surprise to me, it's not that easy even though the photos are in a single database (sheepishly takes off forum genius hat, puts on dunce cap, and trudges off to sit in the corner).

    This article, explains the problem and gives one method for checking the backup with a Terminal command.

  8. #8

    pm-r's Avatar
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    Am I right in assuming theres no way of being certain that all my Photos have been backed up, I now realise I can’t use Time Machine Backup to randomly open Folders & Files ( thanks for pointing that out ),

    Well you should be able to, only if and when using Time Machine.app, but I'd suggest you also get and use a good backup application like Carbon Copy Cloner.app (CCC) that will allow you to create a bootable backup clone:
    https://bombich.com



    - Patrick
    ======

  9. #9

    IWT's Avatar
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    @johnboy

    My comments are less directly related to Time Machine which, I have to say, I've always found reliable. And, you may know this, you can have up to 2 External Hard Drives as Time Machine backups - just in case............

    The other option is for you to backup your Photos database to a different External Hard Drive on an occasional basis.

    Your Photo library can be found: Macintosh HD > Users > Your Name > Pictures > Photos Library.photoslibrary.

    You could you copy/paste that to an EHD or, if you have a steady hand, Click-Drag it to the EHD. This doesn't move anything, just copies the database.

    I do this about every 8 weeks; but you could do this less or more often depending on how heavy your usage is.

    Ideas to mull over.

    Ian
    Ian

  10. #10

    johnboy676's Avatar
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    Many thanks for the replies much appreciated.
    John.

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