The tools are numerous safeguards in Mac OS X and some of them, in
particular to make clones, are presented on this site to trick the
"Backup and OS X". You are already likely to have chosen the option of
cloning your OS X partition to an external hard drive, which is without
doubt the best security in case something goes wrong on your main hard
drive. Cloning also has undeniable strengths: ability to boot from the
clone, clone the clone back to its partition, repair and defragment the
main OS X partition, not to mention the possibility of using the clone
source as partition part of a relocation of the system with or without
"Migration Assistant". One of the main features in Mac OS X Leopard is
"Time Machine". "Time Machine" is not intended to replace your favorite
tool of cloning, because this new tool built into Leopard is different
in how to operate. Indeed, "Time Machine" is to first make incremental
backups automatically. It certainly allows the restoration of all or
part of your computer, but can not restart a clone. For against, with
incremental backups "Time Machine", you can (through the browser "Time
Machine") back in time and go in search of your old files and see
exactly what your computer at a given date . Select a specific date and
let Time Machine "identify the most recent changes, or do a search"
Spotlight "to find exactly what you want. Then click "Restore".
For you to see if you prefer to use the method of cloning "traditional"
or if "Time Machine" and the incremental method gets your preference.
It is possible to opt jointly for both solutions, which are ultimately
quite complementary. For me, I have enabled "Time Machine", after
changing the external hard drive and have purchased a large capacity
(500 GB). I partitioned the external hard drive into two partitions:
one partition 150 GB for the clone of my OS X partition.
If you use "Time Machine", it is indeed highly recommended to have an
external hard drive with large storage capacity, because incremental
backup needs large disk space. It goes without saying that the more
your external drive is, the more you can "go back in time." When the
disk is full, "Time Machine" deletes the oldest backups. It is possible
to choose a partition a hard drive and not use that hard drive when it
is full. This will avoid adding a second external hard drive if you
already have a partition large enough and available for "Time Machine",
but again it is strongly recommended to use "Time Machine" on a disc
external hard drive, because if "Time Machine" is used on the single
hard drive, then you do this backup will be useless if the hard disk
comes to falter!
Warning: If you keep files elsewhere on the same backup drive
(another partition for example), "Time Machine" does not save these
files. This is not very serious (and I would say that so much better!)
If you create a second partition (smaller) dedicated to the clone on
the disk. Indeed, there is no utility that "Time Machine" backup also
clone your main OS X partition!
What does "automatic incremental backup mean?
This means that if "Time Machine" is enabled in the dashboard "Time
Machine" in "System Preferences", this tool will automatically and
regularly updates your computer. In other words, "Time Machine" allows
you to save and preserve everything on your computer, including your
photos, your music, video and documents (hence the need to allocate
space for "Time Machine" on an external hard drive is very large).
After setting "Time Machine", the application regularly backup the data
on your computer without you having to intervene in any way. At its
first backup operation, "Time Machine" starts doing a backup of all
files on your computer. This includes files from your operating system,
applications, accounts, preferences, programs, music, photos, video
clips, documents, in short, everything you store on your computer. When
performing backups, Time Machine only backs up the elements that have
changed since the previous backup.
The first backup of your system by "Time Machine" may take some time.
It may be wise to set "Time Machine" in the evening so that the initial
backup takes place at night. Backups take less time then since only the
elements that have changed are backed up again. The backups are stored
by date so you can browse your entire computer as it appears on a given
date. You can restore your entire computer from any backup copy. You
can do this for single files, entire folders or your entire system.
How "Time Machine" performs backups ?
"Time Machine" performs:
The hourly backups for 24 hours:
This means a backup every hour (when your Mac is turned on only).
However, the changes between backups 2 hours are not taken into
account: if a backup after you create a file, then remove before the
next hourly backup is taken, it will not be present in "Time Machine"
and you will not be able to recover it. If you really want that "Time
Machine" backup this file, then we must start a manual backup, launch
the "Time Machine" while pressing the "Ctrl". Then select the menu
The daily backups for 1 month:
Here backup is maintained once each day. So you have thirty or thirty one backups in each month.
The weekly backups till disk saturation : You can us "Time
Machine" to bend your schedule: Imagine that "Time Machine" is in full
backup and you want to shut down your Mac or pause. "Time Machine"
simply stops the backup process and remembers the stage it reached. It
will then automatically start working when your Mac is active again.
USE TIME MACHINE
To enable / disable "Time Machine" just click on "Time Machine" from your Dashboard.
You can check the status by clicking Show status in the menu bar when
Time Machine is running. Thus, TimeMachine icon will appear in Finder’s
menu bar. By clicking on this icon you can access several menus telling
you when was the last backup taken, and you can manually initiate a
backup, and enter "TimeMachine". You can also access the preferences of
"TimeMachine" by righ-clicking on "TimeMachine" from dashboard. Push
the button to "On". A window opens asking you to choose a hard disk or
partition. Note that if you connect an external hard drive to your Mac
running Leopard, a window will ask you to follow if you want to make
this external hard drive your hard drive for backup with "Time
If you select a partition on the same hard disk you have this message:
It is of course strongly recommended to select another disk drive,
otherwise, in the event of hard disk failure, your backup will not help
you in anyway. Once your partition / external drive is selected, you
have nothing more to do, Everything is automatic and "Time Machine"
takes care of everything. The "Time Machine" window will tell you at
any time what is to safeguard the oldest, the most recent and the next.
The "Options" button lets you view a page giving you the opportunity to
set what should be saved or not. Use the buttons "+" or "-" to add to
this window excluding files / folders that should not be saved. So you
are free to determine what needs to be saved and what is not really
useful. This parameter can be changed whenever you like.
For example, if you do not have a lot of disk space reserved for "Time
Machine", it may not seem wise to save that much, or your own personal
files. Moreover, I advise you also to exclude your virtual machines if
you use Parallels Desktop or VMware Fusion from "Time Machine" backup.
This take up space unnecessarily. These virtual machines are already
"saved" in your clone. "Time Machine" takes care of everything, therefore, you have nothing more to do.
PS: Your disk / partition backup appears dimmed in the list.
How to restore or recover data?
- Open the window covered by
the restoration. For example if you want to restore an element of the
"Documents", open the window for the folder "Documents". If you want to
restore an email, open the inbox for that e-mail account in "Mail" etc.
- Run the application "Time Machine" that is in your Applications folder or from Dock.
"Time Machine" window will appears on the screen.
PS: As a browser, you can navigate through the window as you do in
the Finder to switch windows if necessary. You can open folders, click
on elements of the sidebar and use the search box in the upper right
corner of the window.
Use the arrows or the timeline on the right side of your screen to
browse the backups that Time Machine has created. If you need more
information about an item, double-click to get a preview.
Once the item to restore is found, select it and click "Restore".
If an item you are restoring has the same name as another item on your
computer, you will be prompted to specify whether you want to keep the
element already present, one from the restore or both.
The restored resumes its original location. For example, if it was in
the "Documents", "Time Machine" asks if you want to recreate records to
put an item back to its original location.
"Time Machine" restores all the files you want, photo libraries
"iPhoto" and even contacts from your Address Book. If necessary, you
can even use Time Machine to restore your entire computer. Everything
depends on what you have saved in the preferences.
How to restore your entire OS X partition?
With Time Machine you can restore your entire OS X partition, if your
main OS X partition is defective or if your primary hard disk is
Insert the installation disc of Mac OS X Leopard and then double-click the installation of Mac OS X.
- In the Setup, choose "Tools" / "System Restore from backup".
- Click "Continue".
- Select your partition/disk for "Time Machine".
- Select the Backup "Time Machine" to restore.
- Follow the instructions on the screen.
Change the schedules of Time Machine
As I stated earlier, "Time Machine is backing up every hour and every
day and keeps hourly backups for 24 hours, daily backups for 1 month
and weekly backups until saturation of the disk. Perhaps you feel that
doing a backup every hour is a bit "exaggerated", and then you want to
change this default setting? Two small free software can change this
- TIME MACHINE EDITOR : Download TimeMachineEditor
which allows you to change the schedule backups of "Time Machine". You
decide the frequency of backups or by "interval" or "by time intervals.
Note: Check the two boxes at the bottom of the window. Click "Apply"
and exit the software. Everything is automatic.
- TIME MACHINE SCHEDULER : Download " TimeMachineScheduler"
which will allow you to disable the clock of "Time Machine" and
determine your own preferences in terms of time saving. Once the
application has downloaded, run, enter your administrator password,
then proceed as follows :
- Click on "Install" and then "Continue" to activate the application
- Use your cursor to indicate when "Time Machine" to launch a backup
- Click "Apply"
- Select the "Make backup at startup" and you can make a backup log of "TimeMachineScheduler" if you want.
PS: It is also possible to make the volume "TimeMachine" invisible. Check the box "Invisible", and then restart .