Time machine back up problems

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by shrimpergarry, Feb 4, 2016.

  1. shrimpergarry macrumors newbie

    Aug 11, 2011
    Chelmsford, UK
    I've got a portable hard drive connect to my iMac and have been running Time Machine successfully for a long time. However over the last month I've been getting the error message that it won't back up because there's not enough space.

    I thought the idea was that it would delete the oldest ones when there is no longer enough space, but it appears to not be doing this. Is there a setting I need to change?

    Please help as I've had no back up since 31 December according to the error message!
  2. Alrescha, Feb 4, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016

    Alrescha macrumors 68020

    Jan 1, 2008
    I would start by firing up the Console app, selecting all messages (if necessary) in the log list, and typing "backupd" in the search box. That might provide some more details.

  3. chscag macrumors 68030


    Feb 17, 2008
    Fort Worth, Texas
    This does occur on occasion. The first thing I would do is run First Aid using Disk Utility on the external hard drive. If everything checks out OK, you can manually delete the older backups to make space. Just make sure you delete the older backups from within Time Machine. Each deletion will ask for your Admin password and may take some time depending on how large it is. Kind of a pain to do it that way but it works. The best solution is to purchase a larger external hard drive and continue your backups using it.
  4. JohnDS macrumors 65816

    Oct 25, 2015
  5. IHelpId10t5 macrumors 6502

    Nov 28, 2014
    As long as you have a few additional backup methods that are working correctly (as everyone should), it's a good idea to occasionally simply reformat your Time Capsule and start over with a new backup.

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