OS X and Time Machine

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Big-G, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #1
    Hi - I have a new iMac with OS X, which has no installation disc or CD/DVD drive.

    As I type I am in the process of doing an initial TM backup to an external harddrive. If my iMac disc totally failed and I had installed a new blank drive into the iMac, how would I restore from the TM backup? Would the Command+R option work in that instance?

    I am new to this, so apologies if this is a stupid question. I have heard of the need for a clone, but was wondering if the TM backup would be enough in the above situation.
     
  2. macrumors 65832

    AppleNewton

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Location:
    1 Finite Place
    #2
    if it came with Mountain Lion (or Lion), you have internet recovery you can use Command-R (command option r for direct internet recovery)
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #3
    Thanks. It came with Mountain Lion (it's a late 2012 model - shipped in December). Do I need to turn anything on to enable the Internet Recovery?

    Is there anyway to test that it works before I actually need it, or do I just assume it works if/when the worst was to happen?
     
  4. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #4
    You can do a complete restore to a new, blank drive with your Time Machine backup you are making. Here is what you would do:

    1. Install new blank drive
    2. Plug in USB drive Time Machine (TM) backup and hold option key as you boot
    3. Select the TM drive as the boot source when the boot selection screen comes up. This will start recovery from the TM disk.
    4. Run Disk Utility and format the blank drive as Mac OS Extended
    5. Click restore and wait while TM reinstalls the OS and all your data

    You can also command-r boot to recovery to reinstall the OS, then import your data from Time Machine... but this requires you to redownload the entire 4.7GB OS. There is no need to do this as you already have the OS ready to restore from your TM backup using the process I explained above. Much faster.

    ----------

    You can do a command-r boot to make sure the Recovery HD partition works. You don't need to enable it.

    Also, you can option key boot to the TM drive to make sure that works.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #5
    Hi - thanks a lot for the info.

    I have tried using the option key a couple of times (with the TM disc connected) and I haven't managed to get the TM backup to be displayed as an option. The machine just shows the "Macintosh HD" icon, and there is no Western Digital or "My Book" icon available. Any ideas?


    Holding command-r did allow me to start the process of restoring from the TM disc in that it did show me the disc as an option. I didn't go through with this process, but I did get to see the option. Presumably though this will not work if the disc in the iMac itself is beyond repair?
     
  6. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #6
    It won't say My Book... it will just show the bootable recovery partition on the Time Machine disk. It should look like the one with the green arrow on the right side of the example at the top of this page. Just to confirm, you completed the full backup with Time Machine before doing this?


    It will work, just a little differently. If there is no recovery partition available (like with a dead drive), the machine will drop back to Internet recovery and ask what network to join. After you enter your wifi info it will DL a new 650MB recovery partition into RAM from Apple's servers, and after that it will look just like the recovery screen you saw earlier.

    So essentially, there is a bit of code in the firmware that allows the machine to grab a new recovery startup image from Apple over the Internet.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #7
    The backup itself has been completed (TM looks like it has successfully completed a few hourly backups), but the encryption process is still going on. Could that be the issue with the TM recovery partition not appearing when I boot with the option key pressed? I'll leave it overnight and try again in the morning when hopefully the encryption process will have finished.
     
  8. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #8
    Yes. I think that is the issue.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #9
    After about the 15 hours, the encryption is still going....it's currently at 54%

    It's a 3TB drive, but is this usual?
     
  10. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #10
    Yep... the first time takes forever. :(
     
  11. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #11
    Hi - thanks for the help so far.

    The TM backups are working and the encryption has has now finished. However, I still do not see the TM drive (which is a Western Digital My Book, 3TB, USB3.0) as an option when I boot with the option key selected. Any ideas on this one? I've tried it several times, but I've had no joy.

    As a side issue, when I press the Option key and it shows the "Macintosh HD", at the point where it asks me to select my network, my wifi network doesn't appear in the list (my neighbours does). Again, if there is anything I should be doing here please let me know. For info, the wifi is definitely turned on and working as I have other devices that are using it. Also, when I boot the iMac up, it connects to be network straight away with no issue.
     
  12. macrumors 65832

    AppleNewton

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Location:
    1 Finite Place
    #12
    Did you encrypt the Time Machine drive? That would be why it doesnt show up on startup/boot options
     
  13. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #13
    Try this.

    Is your router setup to show the SSID?
     
  14. Big-G, Jan 23, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013

    thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #14
    I'll have a look at that tomorrow.

    Yes. The "Allow Broadcast of Name (SSID)" option is enabled in the config.

    ----------

    Yes - I have encrypted the drive.....

    I do actually have two drives (I'm planning on keeping one at my Dad's house and swapping them around every couple of months) so if it comes to it, I can try setting that one up without encryption to see if that works.

    ----------
     
  15. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #15
    I have created a TM backup on a drive with no encryption and the drive is still not appearing when I boot with the Option key... :confused:
     
  16. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #16
    Hmmm... so you have the USB drive attached and you restart, then hit the option key just after the chime... and nothing?
     
  17. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #17
    I get the "Macintosh HD" option, but nothing else. I've tried it several times....

    The drive is plugged in and connected to the iMac, and the lights are on. When I boot up using "Macintosh HD" the drive is there and functioning fine.
     
  18. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #18
    I don't get it. :confused: So you just formatted the drive and ran a normal TM backup? It should show up like in the Pondini link I posted earlier.
     
  19. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #19
    Yes. I plugged the drive in, iMac recognised it immediately and asked me if I wanted to format it. I said Yes to that, and it started backing up. A couple of hours later it had completed the backup but the driver doesn't appear when I boot from with Option key pressed. :confused:
     
  20. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #20
    I am at a loss. This has worked for me and many others on the forums. I don't know what else to try. :confused:
     
  21. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #21
    No worries.....thanks for the help.

    Am I right in saying that if I had to, I could still recover using the Command+R option?
     
  22. Weaselboy, Jan 24, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013

    macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #22
    Yes, you could command-r then on that screen (below) you will see an option to restore from the TM backup.

    Given this issue you are having, maybe you should do a command-r boot to test it.

    [​IMG]

    I have one other idea just to test things out. Do you have a 1GB (or larger) USB flash key laying around? If you do, use this utility to make a bootable recovery USB key, then plug in the USB key and option key boot to see if it shows up in the boot list?
     
  23. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    #23
    A quick update is that it seems iMac didn't like it if the WD disc was turned on when the Option key was pressed on boot up.

    The "fix" (for want of a better word) is to boot the iMac with the Option key pressed, ensuring the WD drive is switched off. At this point, I just get "Macintosh HD" as an option. I then turn on the WD drive, the screen refreshes and then the WD drive appears as an option.

    This worked for both the encrypted and non-ecrypted drives, so I am in the process of encrypting the first drive I tried.
     
  24. macrumors P6

    Weaselboy

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    #24
    Wow. That is odd. Never heard of that before. Glad you figured it out because I was stumped.
     
  25. macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #25
    I didn't see anyone mention this alternative -- get another hard drive and clone your internal drive to it (this can be done with Disk Utility, but CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper! will do fast repeated cloning by looking for differences and making the clone the same as the original drive).

    Now if your internal fails, just clone the external back to the original internal. As a bonus, you can run off the the external drive while waiting for a replacement internal -- useful if you can't get your system fixed right away.

    I've had two drive failures on my Macs since I "switched" and have yet to do an OS install.
     

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