I had a bit of an issue yesterday where an external drive was incapacitated for some time. It had some really important data on it which I was under the impression Time Machine was backing up. All of the Time Machine settings pointed to this being the case. But of course, when the drive is no longer active, I couldn't get to those backed up files when browsing Time Machine. I didn't have the time to dig around trying to figure out how to do it. So I just took advantage of the AppleCare I paid for and called the support line. The tech on the phone practically swore on his mother's grave that Time Machine would NOT backup external drives, but only the internal drive. Not convinced, I argued with him for a few minutes explaining that if that was the case, it almost seems like the Apple developers were involved in some kind of horrible joke to make the software look in every way like it would. Trying to assure me of my error, he put me on hold for 5 minutes or so and came back and said he confirmed with another tech that the software wasn't designed to do that and if it was, he didn't know why. Sheesh. Of course, even a quick search of Google for "Will Time Machine back up an external drive" returns lots of results of people saying it will. So my question is this, who's right here, the Apple Tech or Google? Is anyone here actively using Time Machine to back up an external drive? And if so, once your external drive is incapacitated, how do you retrieve those files from the backup?