Backup mac external hard drive using time machine

The beautiful part about Time Machine is that it will keep backing up your new information even if your drive fills up, in which case it will delete the oldest backups. You may also notice if you are using a MacBook that the automatic backup may not start until you plug in your power adapter. This backup estimated minutes, but it ended up actually taking two hours. For more help getting the most out of your Apple devices, check out our how to guide as well as the following articles:.

How to use Time Machine on your Mac

Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:. The Apple Pencil 1st Gen is a fabulous drawing tool for iPad users, but it gets lost very easily. Here are some accessories that'll keep your Pencil safe and secure. Joseph Keller is a senior writer at iMore. An Apple user for more than a decade and a half, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, and Mac.

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  6. A Guide to Backing Up Your Mac with Time Machine.

How does Time Machine work? Getting started with Time Machine. Apple granted new patent that reimagines the iPhone case Apple applies for, and is granted, tons of patents every year. You can also use Time Machine to back up to a server on your network as long as it's running macOS Server, available here. We have a collection of the best NAS drives here , the best hard drives here and the best SSDs , to help you find the best option for backing up to.

How to Back Up Your Computer with Time Machine

If you don't already have a shortcut to the Time Machine menu it will be easier for you if you set one up. This icon was present in El Capitan but disappeared after Sierra launched in If you don't see this icon it looks like a clock with a curved arrow you can create a shortcut to the Time Machine preferences in the form of a Time Machine icon in the menu on the right-hand side of the top of your screen. You can also add Time Machine to your Dock if it's not already there, but this will be a shortcut to the backups rather than the menu.

Open your Applications folder and select the Time Machine icon and drag the icon into your Dock. You should backup your Mac regularly.

Using Time Machine to backup an external hard drive

The beauty of Time Machine is that it will back up pretty much constantly, but rather than make a complete back up of your Mac every time, the software only copies the things you are working on, so each back up is small and you will hardly notice it happening. Most other backup methods involve a daily back up of your whole system. The benefit of Apple's method is that you can load up a version of a document you were working on an hour ago, rather than undoing over and over again until you get back to that version.

Back Up Your Mac With Time Machine and SuperDuper

The important thing is to remember that while Time Machine backs up regularly, it will only do so if your Mac is connected to the device you are backing up to. This could be an external storage device that needs to be plugged into your Mac, so don't forget to plug it in! Speaking of which, your Mac also needs to be plugged in before it will back up to Time Machine.

Alternatively it could be a network attached storage device a NAS drive in which case, your Mac should only need to be connected to the same WiFi network in order to back up.


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  • If your Mac hasn't backed up using Time Machine for a while you will see alerts reminding you to back up. Don't wait until a hundred days have passed since your last Time Machine backup and then spill water over your laptop we say this from experience. Time Machine will make hourly backups but you can force it to make a backup at any time, perhaps because you are about to shut down your Mac and you want to make sure that the Time Machine back up is up to date first. It's likely that if you've only made a few changes since the last backup this one won't take very long: just a few minutes.

    But if you haven't backed up for a while, or if this is your first backup, it's probably going to take some time.

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    You will see a progress bar that indicates how many gigabytes of data is being backed up and how much time is remaining. Initially you will just see Preparing Backup, then you will see how big update will be while the software calculates the time remaining. If it's just a normal backup it's unlikely to take more than five minutes. If you feel that the Time Machine backup is taking too long there are ways to speed it up, which we look at below. Next to the progress bar described above you will see an X. Click on this to stop the backup.

    How to back up external hard drives with Time Machine on Mac OS X - Let's Talk Tech

    The system will start the back up again in one hour. To start it again see how to force a Time Machine backup above. If you want to pause a backup and finish it later, select Skip This Backup from the Time Machine menu.

    wafurixywa.tk If the hourly backups become annoying you can disable them - but don't forget to use Time Machine to backup from time to time, and remember that when you do it will take longer because the system won't be making the incremental hourly backups so there will be more to cover. There are a few scenarios when Time Machine might fail to back up your Mac and when this happens the Time Machine icon in the menu bar will have an exclamation mark in the middle of it.

    It could be because the external drive doesn't have enough space; it might have become corrupted because you unplugged the drive without dismounting it first this is why it's important to make sure you always eject a drive properly before disconnecting it ; or it could be that the drive isn't formatted correctly.