How to best shrink Time Machine backup?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by ramparts, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. ramparts macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #1
    I'm moving my Time Machine backups from my old external to a new one. Here's the problem.

    I've got the old drive partitioned into 2 partitions, one (600 GB) for storage, and one (400 GB) for Time Machine. I'm partitioning the new drive so that storage has 700 GB and Time Machine 300 GB, since I could use more storage space. The problem is that the current Time Machine partition has 350 GB used up in backups.

    I'm wondering what the best way would be to chop off 50 GB of my Time Machine backups, so that I can transfer them over to the new drive with the smaller partition.

    Thanks!
     
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2010
    Location:
    On the fence
    #2
    That depends. You could always just make a new backup, unless you anticipate needing something from a while ago.
     
  3. ramparts thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #3
    Well, that's the thing, I'd like to have old backups on hand. I could go and just delete the few oldest ones (back to June) but I'd prefer to have those, just in case. If anything, I'd rather get rid of some of the more recent backups for which I have backups from the next day or week.

    Here's my ideal situation: I end up with (more or less) whatever backups Time Machine would keep if I'd started off with a 300 GB partition back in June. I imagine my old (monthly) backups would still be there, but that the more recent ones would have slightly thinner coverage. Ideally I'd like a way of pruning my old backups in a way that results in that.
     
  4. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #4
    Buy another disk. Whats it going to cost, $50?
     
  5. ramparts thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #5
    What's the point? I only want 300 GB of backups, I'm just trying to find the most efficient way to prune down the 350 I have now.
     
  6. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #6
    Does the extra 50GB make that much difference? If it does, presumably oyu will need another disk soon anyway. If it doesn't, for example 300 is just an arbitrary number you set, why not live with 350 ?
     
  7. ramparts thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #7
    Because I want the extra 50 GB on my storage partition, given how I've filled up the first 600 GB I expect that extra 50 GB to be useful.

    Anyway, I've already done the partition and moved stuff over to the storage partition, so to be honest posts like just this telling me to do things a different way are sort of beyond the point. It's too late now, and I'm pretty set on how I'm doing it.
     
  8. theblake macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2011
    #8
    Exactly. Forums are usually full of answers that say "why didnt you search for the solution", so being a well informed internet user, I did do a Google search for "how to shrink time machine backup" and here I am, and still none the wiser.

    Likewise I need this solution, I have multiple machines backing up to one Time Machine, a couple are hogging all the space. It is not practical to just delete an entire sparsebundle and start again.

    I also found this
    http://blog.oak-tree.us/index.php/2009/10/18/time-machine-reclaim-space

    which seems to provide the answer we needed.
     

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