Time machine first back up: will it erase everything on my external drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Soulweaponry, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. Soulweaponry macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    #1
    Is this what it looks like? To back up my mac, do i have to erase everything on my hard drive? I have a lot of important stuff on there i can't erase

    [​IMG]
     
  2. James Craner macrumors 68000

    James Craner

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2002
    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    #2
    Yes it will erase everything on the hard drive, because Time Machine can only work with Mac formatted hard disks HSF+, it looks like your current disk is not HSF+.
     
  3. Soulweaponry thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    #3
    That sucks. I really wanted to back up my mac. Now i can't because the stuff on my hard drive is just too important to erase. What's HSF+?
     
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #4
    "That sucks. I really wanted to back up my mac. Now i can't because the stuff on my hard drive is just too important to erase. What's HSF+?"

    HFS+ is the Mac file system. I'm going to -guess- that the external drive you have is formatted in something else compatible for use on both a Mac -and- Windows. That won't do for TM.

    Suggestions:
    If you really want to use TM, you'll need -another- external drive. But what I'd really suggest is one of these:
    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias=aps&field-keywords=usb+sata+dock&x=0&y=0
    (many items shown, they all work the same, just pick one you like. Some can be had for as cheap as $25. You might consider getting one that's "USB3", will be faster than USB2 with the Macs of the future)

    Then, just get a "bare" hard drive of your choice to go into it.

    A "docked drive" will behave just as an external drive.

    BUT --
    The -best- Mac backup solution doesn't use Time Machine. Instead, download the free "CarbonCopyCloner" app from:
    http://bombich.com

    It's easy to learn and use and one of the best pieces of Mac software out there.

    CCC will create a "bootable clone" of your internal drive (you CAN'T boot from a TM backup in a moment of extreme need). The files on it are in POFF (plain ol' finder format) -- just connect the backup, and it will show up on the desktop, ready to use.

    CCC will also do "incremental" backups so you can maintain the clone in a state that is exactly like your internal (at the time of the last backup).

    I have seen post after post from folks here who used Time Machine to backup, and then -- in a moment of extreme need -- find that they can't access their TM backup to get going again. Use CCC, and this won't be the case.
     
  5. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    #5
    How much free space do you have on the external drive ?

    Might be better to create a HFS+ partition on the drive for Time Machine - is the drive formatted in NTFS or what ?
     
  6. Soulweaponry thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    #6
    It's a 2 tb hard drive so about 1.5 tb left. NFTS? You'll have to excuse my ignorance. I don't know much about anything thats not getting on the computer and going on youtube or reedit. All i know is when i got the my book external hard drive, i drag dropped my stuff from my windows pc to the hard drive. I don't know anything about formatting or...anything. I just drag and dropped
     
  7. logana macrumors 65816

    logana

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    #7
    It will be NTFS format - which is normal Windows formatting....

    Do you still have access to the Windows PC ?

    What you need to do is create 2 partitions on the external - 1 in NTFS and 1 in HFS+....

    You will need access to a Mac and a PC to do it quickly and without extra software
     
  8. Soulweaponry thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    #8
    Yep! Still got the windows pc and my mac side by side. How do i create partitions? Is there an easy way to explain it to a dumb 'ol person like me?
     
  9. cerote macrumors 6502a

    cerote

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    #9
    On your Mac: Apps>utilities>disk utility

    From there select your extrenal and you can create 2 partions. Click on each parition to and select format type. But be sure to copy all your data off there first because it will wipe the drive clean.
     
  10. cerote, Mar 12, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2012

    cerote macrumors 6502a

    cerote

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    #10
    (Was an answer to a question after last post but then reliezed it was a spammer which as since been removed. But will leave it here)

    Can't you jsut copy it over to your desktop or whatever then move it back when done?

    I always just do that when I needed to reformat an extrenal.
     

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