Recovering old files in TM after clean install

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by Goofy Yno, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. Goofy Yno, Oct 28, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2011

    Goofy Yno macrumors member

    Jun 24, 2009
    How do I find old files in time machine after clean install of lion?

    I recently did a clean install, and reloaded my apps instead of migrating because of previous sluggishness. My problem is I can find most of my pictures. Time machine has already back up the new system, so the only thing I can find is that. I am very much hoping I can recover the missing files.

    please help.:eek:

    I found the old drive, but it says"resource temporarily unavailable"
  2. milomak macrumors member

    Apr 25, 2010
    did you use the same disk for the time backup of your new install?
  3. Goofy Yno thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 24, 2009
    I'm embarrassed, but I'm not sure I know the answer. I used the same time machine with is on my airport extreme.
  4. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    This why clean installs are bad ideas for many people. I don't know why you did it, but I think you essentially overwrote your data.

    Most people do a clean install by wiping their boot drive and reinstalling software, usually by using the installer for the system software and then migratiing or manually moving stuff. Sounds like you took the latter option.

    Then you may have let Time Machine back up the machine. What happened, perhaps, is that TM thought it was looking at a new machine, which it was, because that's the whole point of a clean install: you get rid of all your old stuff. So it made a new backup.

    You may not have lost all, however. The TM backup you have is a backup of the current state of your "new" installation. The old backup might still be there, but you may have to go into it manually. Check on the disk. You could also try using something like Back in Time; it's a utility that makes exploring TM backups easier. It may be that the other pictures are there, but not where you expect them. Had you moved them in the past?

    Good luck.
  5. Goofy Yno thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 24, 2009
    I think you're right. I can fins an icon that I believe is the old back up, but can not access it.

    I had not moved them- they were in I photo. I will try to find and use "Back in time" later tonight or tomorrow.

    (I agree I should have done this but the computer was running very sluggishly, and the guy at the apple store told me to do it. he said with the airport extreme, the back up would be safe. I should have let it rewrite everything but the logic of a bad file being rewritten causing the same issues made sense to me.

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