How to delete back up data and start fresh with Time Capsule

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by rpg51, Feb 26, 2013.

  1. rpg51 macrumors 6502

    rpg51

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    Jul 4, 2012
    #1
    I am using a Time Capsule in bridge mode. I use it for my home network and as wired and wireless router and it works very well. I have a usb external disc attached to it. I also use my TC for Time Machine backups from three macs in my home.

    I would like to delete the existing back up data and start fresh with a new time machine back up for each of my three computers. What do I need to do to delete the existing back up files?
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #2
    Turn off Time Machine on all the computers. Then go to this screen in Airport Utility and click erase. Now turn Time Machine back on on each machine and select the Time Capsule as the backup destination. Done.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. rpg51 thread starter macrumors 6502

    rpg51

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    #3
    Thank you. I never would have figured that out without your help. I'll give it a whirl this weekend.
     
  4. jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2013
    #4
    How do I switch off prior to erasing disc

    I would like to do this also, and start again - as the initial backup got interrupted by accident.
    How do I switch off the disc before saying erase disc?
    Sorry just don't want to make things even worse by doing wrong thing!
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #5
    Just go to this Time Machine settings screen in System Preferences and slide the button to off.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    #6
    Thats great, not difficult.

    I would never have thought of that, many thanks.
     
  7. jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2013
    #7
    Sorry still in trouble, don't get your screen in Airport Utility.
    I get a black square, with a globe at top then, internet plus green blob underneath and then line to picture of time capsule - and underneath that it says my airport time capsule, but can't click on any of it.
    Can easily switch the on to off on other screen - done that, but stuck now. Sorry
     
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #8
    Click the small Apple at he top left of your screen in the menu bar. In that menu select System Preferences... that will open a panel with a variety of settings. Click the one toward the lower right labelled Time Machine. That will give you the settings panel from my previous screenshot. Once there just slide the toggle to off. Now go back to Airport Utility are erase the disk.
     
  9. jvmerlin, Dec 2, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2013

    jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2013
    #9
    Hi, sorry, I have slid the slider to off, on both computers, even though never activated the time capsule on the macbook, waiting until Imac sorted.
    Cannot get the Airport Utilities screen you show with erase disc on it. It is a brand new Time Capsule, just arrived today.
     
  10. jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2013
    #10
    Found screen, by hook or by crook.

    Hello Weaselboy.
    Thanks for your patience.
    Found screen eventually. But when I say erase, it says to choose from
    Quick erase, non secure.
    Zero out data
    7 pass data
    35 pass data.

    On quick erase it says data stays there and can potentially be recovered.
    The zero out says puts zeros over all data on the disc.
    7/35 says writes data over the entire disc 7 or 35 times.

    What I wanted was just to start from scratch with "as new" Time Capsule. This does not seem to do that.

    Can you help me?
     
  11. skorpien macrumors 68020

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    Jan 14, 2008
    #11
    Use the quick erase. As you aren't selling it or getting rid of it, there's no point in zeroing out the data. Those options are for people that do not want others to be able to recover their data if they obtain the hard drive within the Time Capsule.

    While quick erase doesn't get rid of the data on the hard drive, it deletes any references to it making the Time Capsule behave as though the drive was new or empty. As Time Machine needs the space, it will overwrite the existing data accordingly.

    Quick erase and enabling Time Machine backups should start you fresh again.
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #12
    Yep... skorpien is right on target here. Quick erase is all you need.
     
  13. jvmerlin macrumors newbie

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    May 30, 2013
    #13
    Thanks guys

    Many thanks,
    Fingers crossed, it is backing up again - 4-5 hours to go. Then I can add the macbook to the time capsule.
    Sorry to be so confused.
    Many thanks for your help, I would not have managed without you.
     
  14. katiekiele macrumors newbie

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    Jan 16, 2014
    #14
    Deleting only some of data on Time Capsule

    Is there a way to delete some of the back up data on my time capsule to start over but leave one back up on there?
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #15
    Do you mean delete some folders from an existing backup but leave the rest?

    Launch the Time Machine star field Interface. Then right click the folder you want to delete and you will see an option to delete all copies of that item. That will completely remove that folder from the Time Machine backup while leaving everything else. You can do that for as many folders or files as you want.
     
  16. katiekiele macrumors newbie

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    Jan 16, 2014
    #16
    Ha! IS there really something called the Time Machine Starfield Interface? That's funny.

    What I'm trying to do is this: Our Time Capsule backs up 3 computers and is almost full. I want to leave the info on there from my son's computer but delete the rest of the info and then start fresh with the other two computers. So I don't want to wipe it clean as my son is in college and does not back up his data regularly so I need to save his. But my husband and I want to start over with ours as the data on the capsule is old. (I have been backing up to another drive.)

    Hope that makes sense. And thanks so much for your help!
     
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #17
    Heh... yeah I know. I don't know what else to call it and everybody seems to get what I mean. :D

    Ah gotcha... easy. Each computer has a "computer name" that you can see in the Sharing Pane of System Preferences. Look there for each Mac so you know what you are after.

    Now turn off Time Machine for the two machines you want to do this with.

    Then open Finder and click the Time Capsule in the shared section to the lower left. Then double click the Time Capsule disk itself that appears in the main Finder window. You will see one file there for each machine backed up and it will be named the same as the computer name you looked up earlier (like Katie Macbook). Just select that file and hit command-delete (both keys at once). You will get a warning this is not reversible. Just accept the warning and wait for the file to delete. It can take a while if the file is large.
     
  18. katiekiele macrumors newbie

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    Jan 16, 2014
    #18
    Oh awesome!! You are so smart and helpful. Thank you!! All is well now.

    Have a great day!
     
  19. norvic, Jun 29, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2014

    norvic macrumors newbie

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    Jun 29, 2014
    #19
    Thanks for this advice.

    It was taking ages and I asked a question about 'how long'. But as soon as a I had posted that I got an error message on Finder, so I'm changing my question!

    The error message reads:
    The operation can’t be completed because an unexpected error occurred (error code -8072).

    From what I can see on various apple support forums this usually concerns permissions and often occurs when people are copying or deleting files, or trying to empty trash. But I am trying to delete the whole lot from my part of Time Capsule.

    I don't know whether anything has been completed or not (the 'below the line' caption read 'items to delete: 0' for the whole period from start to finish!)
     
  20. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #20
    It won't show a file number countdown because you are really only deleting one file... that sparse bundle image is seen as one file by the system. Kind of like if you had 100 files inside a ZIP file and deleted the ZIP it would show as one file being deleted.

    Last time I recall doing this on mine it was around 70GB and it took a couple minutes.
     
  21. norvic macrumors newbie

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    Jun 29, 2014
    #21
    Darn - our actions/messages crossed.

    Sorry, I changed my original while you were answering it. Because the situation changed as soon as I posted mine. I'd be grateful for your thoughts on the revised message, thanks !
     
  22. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #22
    Hmmm... not familiar with that error message at all. Maybe try unplugging the Time Capsule then start it back up and try again. Permissions might be an issue if you were trying to look at files inside that bundle, but should not matter just deleting the whole thing.

    Another idea if you just want to set aside your son's backup and then erase the while TC disk, is you can double click the sparse bundle image for his then inside you will see a file called Backups.backupdb. You can just drag that to a USB drive/key and set it aside for him, then erase your TC disk and start all over.
     
  23. mermaid2010 macrumors member

    mermaid2010

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    Location:
    Cornwall, UK
    #23
    Wi-Fi

    I have had so many problems lately getting Time Machine to back up to the Time Capsule that I have given up and got a new EHD and plugged it directly into iMAC for my TM back ups. Now my Time Capsule has become a glorified WiFi hub! I would like to delete the old back ups on the Time Capsule and release space for storing some music of video etc. If I do the erase thing in disk utility - will it have any adverse affect on the Wi-Fi bit of the Time Capsule as I cannot do without that?

    Much appreciated :) any help

     
  24. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #24
    You won't be able to erase a Time Capsule disk from Disk Utility. You will need to do that in Airport Utility from this screen (erase disk). That will not otherwise impact the Time Capsule or change any of the wifi settings.

    [​IMG]
     

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