help getting data from the TimeMachine of a stolen Macbook

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by GilesM, Nov 27, 2015.

  1. GilesM macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2008

    recently my mothers macbook was stolen. However they did not steal her TimeMachine drive on which she kept her back up data.
    Her Macbook was a 2008 model running 10.6.
    I have been given the drive and asked to get the data back.

    I have two Mac's 1 running 10.10.5 and one running 10.6.8

    How can I get her data back using these machines? I have tried assigning this drive as Time Machine on my 10.10.5 machine but it does not recognise it.
    If I plug the drive in to USB i can browse it but can not navigate to the actual data just the backups directory.

    Thanks in advance for any help given.
  2. AFEPPL macrumors 68030


    Sep 30, 2014
  3. GilesM thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2008
    Thanks, not sure what that is but I will try to find it and give it a go....
  4. GilesM thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2008
    Ok, so now I can read the drive and can navigate through to the last back up of the iPhoto library.
    This is what i need to get back, the photos in this library.
    However when I try to use the iPhoto library upgrader as directed by Apple the process fails and I can not get the library to open in iphoto 11 nor in photos. I can navigate to the library but it just will not open nor import.
  5. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Are you trying to do that from inside the Time Machine backup? I don't think that will work... you will need to restore that file to your Mac then open it in iPhoto.
  6. GilesM thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2008
    Thanks for helping. I finally found my answer. how I got it to work;

    1) attach the TM drive to a Mac of the same generation as the machine that was stolen (2008), lucky here as my wife iMac matches up!

    2) open iphoto 08, while holding the option key (to be able to select the library)

    2) navigate to the latest version of the backup.

    3) navigate down to the user account, then onward to the iPhoto library.

    4) Open the library - hey presto all the photos and events.

    Now I can export all the photo's and then re-import to Photos or I can just wait till I can replace the stolen laptop with one also running 10.6 and iPhoto 08, then be sure to copy the library over.

    Thanks again for your help.
  7. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    Now follow up with changing all your username & passwords. Plus go to Apple - My Apple ID and change you Apple password ASAP!!! Also change your iTunes passwords too!
  8. GilesM thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 17, 2008
    Yes, I have already changed my mothers passwords and so forth for her... (it was her laptop that was stolen)
  9. JohnDS macrumors 65816

    Oct 25, 2015
    Yes, and assuming that she got a new Mac, turn on FileVault to encrypt the drive in case it gets stolen again.

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