HELP Time Machine won't launch.

Discussion in 'macOS' started by seniorgeek, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. seniorgeek macrumors member

    Jun 6, 2011
    I screwed Time Machine up, I think I deleted a backup and quit one midstream, now Time Machine will not start, if it were my Windows machine I would just uninstall and reinstall but I on't have a clue how to fix this. I have a week old iMac running Lion. Thanks for your help.
  2. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    A week old iMac doesn't have history to preserve. Delete the old backup and start from scratch.

    First find the old backup. Switch Time Machine off. Go to the drive you were backing up to and look for backups.backupdb or yourmachinename.sparsebundle. You might have to mount the drive you normally use for backup. You aren't backing up over the network are you? TM does very badly backing up remotely. If you back up to a usb or firewire drive or even via ethernet, things go more smoothly.

    Second delete the old backup.

    Third launch Time Machine and tell it to use the disk you want it to use for backup.

    Fourth: wait. It takes about an hour to back up 30 gig over gigabit ethernet. It takes 25 hours to do the same thing over 802.11g. So go ahead and use your machine but ignore that spinning clock. Don't pick at it, touch it or harass it. Once a backup has completed, and you'll know when it says something like last backup 5:44 pm next backup 6:44 pm, then you can poke around and do things like "enter time machine" to browse around and see what's in there.

    Most importantly: Don't let Time Machine be your only backup. I suggest you manually copy your home folder to a network drive or use Crashplan. There is nothing worse than going to restore a backup only to find it is not readable and your stuff really is gone for good.
  3. Ol!ver macrumors 6502a

    Mar 2, 2005
    Did you get this fixed? Launching Time Machine does nothing here, either.

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