Time Machine

Why is Time Machine backing up everything?

Apple's Time Machine

Episode 1672

George from Victor, Montana

George has a Seagate external hard drive for storing his photos. But when he opens it, he sees everything from photos to files. Leo says it's likely that his Mac is using Time Machine, and it's backing up everything. You have the option to disable the backing of system files and other data. So spend some time in the settings and decide what you want to backup. Once you tell Time Machine what drive you want for backup, then it'll backup regularly. Leo also recommends enabling iCloud.

Don't Rely on Time Machine for Your Only Backup

Apple's Time Machine works in a funky way, so go over to your local store and get a large 4TB (or bigger) drive. Also, get Shirt Pocket's SuperDuper program, which will make a bootable external disk that replicates the internal drive in your system. In case something goes wrong with your internal drive, reboot your Mac while holding down the "option" key, and boot the backup. The newest version 3.2.5 supports Mojave and includes their Smart Delete, Smart Wake, and Smart Update features.

Why Can't Time Machine Complete My Backup?

Time Machine

Episode 1604

Kevin from Bellflower, CA

Kevin just returned from an Alaska Cruise and downloaded all the photos and videos, but his Time Machine backup will not complete it due to insufficient free space. Leo says it sounds like his hard drive has run out of room. Even with 20GB of free space, Time Machine may be taking a snapshot of the drive locally, before backing it up. Choices: Free up space on the internal drive or buy a larger one. 

The chatroom says that if the external drive can't be seen, Time Machine will make the backup locally. So make sure it can see the external drive. 

Can I use Time Machine with macOS Mojave?

SuperDuper!

Episode 1546

Charles from Virginia Beach, VA

Charles wants to know the best way to set up Time Machine on his Mac with macOS Mojave. Leo says that in the new OS, there is a new APFS file system, and there have been backup issues with Time Machine and others. He may need to use an external drive formatted with the old HFS file system. That will insure that if his internal drive dies, his backup is secure. Leo also recommends not using Time Machine as his primary backup system. He should make an image backup with SuperDuper.

Why do I have to reauthorize my Synology backup with Time Machine?

Synology DiskStation DS216

Episode 1508

Tim from Franklin, OH

Tim uses Time Machine for his backup, but the backup fails intermittently. His Synology NAS is citing improper credentials as the cause. Leo says that encryption certificates need to be renewed from time to time, and if he's encrypting his data on backup, that could be the issue.

There is a post on Synology forums about this: Time Machine, Making it Work. Learn from my Suffering. There are some steps that can help.

Does Time Machine work with the new APFS file system on my Mac?

SuperDuper

Episode 1429

Eric from Bridgewater, MA

Eric converted to High Sierra on his Mac and chose APFS on Time Machine. Now he's got trouble. Leo says that Apple cautioned not to do that. Can he at least downgrade? Leo says that the good news is there was no data lost, so he could format it to downgrade from APFS and then let it backup again. Eric should check out this article at macobserver on how to use Time Machine with APFS. He shouldn't convert to APFS if he has a Fusion drive just yet.

What is a good alternative to Apple Time Machine?

SuperDuper

Episode 1417

Chris from Miami, FL

Chris says that his Time Machine won't let him set when the backup happens. It just does it when it wants to. Are there any alternatives? Leo says that SuperDuper is a better option. It can not only back up his internal drive, but it can make his external drive bootable so that if his hard drive dies, he'll be back up and running within minutes or even seconds!

Are there cameras using buttons and knobs these days?

Fuji X-T2

Episode 1416

Dale from Santa Monica, CA

Dale says that the Fuji X-T2 and he says that most adjustments can be made without the menu settings. They have dials and buttons like the old days. Leo says that seems to be the trend now, going back to physical dials to make changes while shooting, and you can even reassign and program buttons for your most often used settings. It's mostly in higher end cameras, though. Leo says that they look like the old retro style film cameras and he loves that.

Why can't I get Time Machine to work in macOS Sierra?

Episode 1343

Lance from Los Angeles, CA

Lance upgraded to macOS Sierra and now his Time Machine isn't working. Apple Care hasn't been able to solve the problem either. He's even reinstalled the OS and Time Machine. It just hangs about 2/3 of the way through the backup. Leo says that nobody really likes Time Machine, especially when it doesn't work. No one really knows how it works, either. If Apple can't figure it out, it's a lost cause.