Time Machine configured to back up an external hard drive - is this normal?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by lifexkills, Jan 27, 2012.

  1. lifexkills macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2012
    Hi everyone,

    I hope this is the right forum for this question. Sorry if it's not. And I also apologize if this has already been answered. I did try searching around, but didn't find anything... I wasn't sure of exactly what to search for either.

    I have a Time Capsule that is set up as my Time Machine drive. I have it configured to back up both the internal hard drive on my laptop as well as an external drive that I keep hooked up to my laptop most of the time.

    I realized in the past few weeks that any time I eject and then reconnect the external hard drive to my laptop, Time Machine tries to back up the entire contents of the external drive again - it's 400+ gigs and it takes a very long time.

    I'm wondering if that is the expected behavior. Shouldn't Time Machine just back up what has changed on the hard drive, instead of the whole thing every time? Any idea why it would be trying to back up the entire hard drive again whenever I plug it in to my laptop? And is there any way to get it to stop doing that?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Bodhichita macrumors newbie

    Feb 19, 2012
    SAME question re: long back up time

    I too have similar issues. I am using my GoFLex hard drive and it takes FOREVER .... anyone out there with some advice for us both?
  3. lifexkills thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2012
    Hey man.

    I actually got it working normally for me again. I can't remember where I found about this, but basically if the Time Machine backup gets interrupted somehow (machine turned off, drive unplugged, or even just canceled maybe) it might corrupt its index file and it'll back up the whole drive every time.

    The way I fixed it is by deleting the backup altogether (erasing the Time Capsule I use as my Time Machine back up) and starting it all over again. Obviously, the first pass after you do this takes a while and it does all your files again, but after that, it's been correctly doing just incremental backups since. And I'm very cognizant of allowing it to finish uninterrupted now.

    Hope that helps.

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