A beginner's question about Time-machine

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by eroxx, Aug 9, 2011.

  1. eroxx macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #1
    I have done some reading and pod-cast listening regarding Time Machine. I understand it backs up your files.

    Question #1:But let's say my hard drive fails (I do have a snow leopard DVD). After booting from the dvd, can I restore my system from the time machine and everything will look exactly as it did before?

    Question #2: I have a 3TB hard drive, plenty of room for time machine. Can I have another folder on the drive filled with misc. stuff, or does it have to be EXCLUSIVELY time machine?

    Question #3: My imac has a 256gb SSD drive and a 2TB drive. I will time machine on all of it (the 2 TB is only half filled). Going back to question 1, if I restore, will it restore the ENTIRE computer, second drive and all? I have, for example, my itunes library on that second drive. If I were to restore from a perfect time machine backup, would it run without any other necessary steps? Thanks so much!
     
  2. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #2
    Yes, you can. From the Utilities menu when booted from that Snow Leopard DVD, you simply choose "Restore from Time Machine Backup."

    Sure. If it ever runs out of space, it'll just start deleting older backups. You can have anything you want on the drive, I just wouldn't place anything else in the Backups folder.

    I haven't done this before, but I would expect so. It's designed to work with multiple drives. Someone else may have personal experience to fill in here.

    jW
     
  3. spidey3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #3
    You can do this - but it is NOT advisable, as it would mean that you have data and its backup on the same drive. If that drive were to fail, you would be way out of luck.

    Basic rule of thumb:
    1) Back up everything you care about
    2) Backup drives should have nothing on them except for backups
    3) Make a periodic copy of your backup drive to a third drive, which you store offsite - to provide protection in case of fire, flood, theft, etc...

    Spidey!!!
     
  4. eroxx thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #4
    thank you both for your very detailed explanations. I am using a clone program as well (superduper). And although I read about the differences (superduper does not even need the snowleopard dvd to install), it seems like time machine is just fine on its own .. ?
     
  5. spidey3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #5
    It depends:

    If you need to restore that batch of files you accidentally overwrote three weeks ago, then Time Machine is your friend -- because it keeps history: Backups every hour (by default), with older and intra-day backups thinned out as space is needed. The storage is very efficient - as a file is copied only if it changes.

    But if you need to restore an entire disk [say, after a drive failure], then restoring from a clone will probably be faster and easier. And if the clone drive is the same type of hardware as the failed drive, you should just be able to swap it into place where the failed one was.

    Then, of course, you can follow up swapping in the clone with a restore from Time Machine of any files which changed since the clone was made...

    Spidey!!!
     
  6. eroxx thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #6
    sorry for being dense here, but can't you use time machine to also restore the "clone" (ie the latest backup) ?
     
  7. spidey3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #7
    Yes, you could -- but on a very large disk that is much slower than swapping in your most recent clone drive, and then restoring the files which changed since the clone was made.

    Also, there is a difference based upon whether you have configured Time Machine to include system files. If you have not included them, then it will definitely be convenient to have that clone to get up configured and up and running faster...

    Spidey!!!
     
  8. eroxx thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #8
    where do you configure to backup system files? Thanks SO much!
     
  9. spidey3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #9
    You should be able to change this by going to Time Machine Preferences -> Options

    Spidey!!!
     

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