Time Machine eats up my HDD

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Molnies, Nov 17, 2007.

  1. Molnies macrumors member

    Jun 7, 2006
    Okay, I have a major problem with TimeMachine at the moment. It worked perfectly until yesterday. Two days ago I had over 150Gb free on my external HDD which is dedicated to TimeMachine as well as for Aperture back-ups, yesterday I got a message from TimeMachine saying that the drive was full (only 4Gb left).

    When I check in Finder it says that every single folder from every hourly update is around 150-160Gb. The same thing comes up when I checked the drive in the app WhatSize, which actually list the main TimeMachine back-up folder as being 5.46TB(!) and the HDD itself is a 500Gb, with around 130Gb used by Aperture.

    So the total file size TimeMachine is suppose to back-up is around 160Gb, then Aperture takes 130Gb. The drive is a 500Gb = 465 actual Gb.
    This should mean that the drive should have 175Gb free, give or take a few, but nowhere near being full.

    I was under the impression that TimeMachine only backed up the actually modified files every hour, not every single one. So how can it be that it's eating up 100+ Gb duing one day?
    As of right now it has deleted all old back-ups to make place for the new ones, so I only have back-ups from yesterday and today left...

    Any ideas on what the problem might be and what to do about it?

    Attached Files:

  2. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    oh wow thats quite a pickle there...mine doesnt do the same as that, if i go into each backup it will only be the documents that i have updated....i.e. 10mb or something tiny...

  3. tyr2 macrumors 6502a


    May 6, 2006
    Leeds, UK
    You see that space usage due to the way Time Machine works. Each backup on disk appears as a full backup, however files that have not changed are 'hard linked' to the existing copies on disk and do not require any more space on the disk. As such when you look at space usage for each backup it appears to be the size of the full backup.

    If you want to see what files have changed between one backup and the next you could try a short script I posted in this thread, which you may find useful. I'm working on a graphical front end with more features at the moment.

    You could eat through a lot of space if you're backing up something like a torrent download as the whole torrent will be backed up every hour as it will have changed. Try the script above to see if you can identify the files in question.

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