Time Machine: How to check if it's doing its job?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by MacNoobGuy, Dec 2, 2013.

  1. MacNoobGuy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2012
    #1
    Hey all, I've been running Time Machine since April 2012. I've needed to use it to restore my Mac Mini. Is there any way for me to check if it's doing its job and actually backing up?

    What can I do?

    Thanks!
     
  2. costabunny macrumors 68020

    costabunny

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Location:
    Weymouth, UK
    #2
    Just click on the time machine icon in the top bar and choose enter time machine.

    Then you can go back by date and see all the backups.
     
  3. satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #3
    Plus consider getting the free Dashboard widget Time Machine Buddy (it still work in a fresh install of 10.9).
     
  4. MacNoobGuy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2012
    #4
    I don't want to use a 3rd party app.

    Can I try something else?
     
  5. Kelmon macrumors 6502a

    Kelmon

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2005
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #5
    It kinda depends on how you want to answer your question. However, I tend to think that the simplest way will be to just check what is on your Time Machine drive in the Finder. Time Machine is great because it makes use of a little used feature of UNIX called "hard links" to present a "current" view of your drive(s) that is actually an amalgamation of files copied at different times. So if I was going to answer this question I'd browse my Time Machine drive in the Finder (you should find a folder called something like "Latest" about 2-levels down) and make sure that the files I wanted were there and that they were OK. You should see everything that you expected and nothing that told it to exclude.

    Sorry I can't be more descriptive about this as I'm at work and I'm doing this by memory.
     
  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #6
    In addition to manually checking like Kelmon mentioned, you can look in Console app to see what Time Machine is up to

    Launch Console app from /Applications/Utilities and type backup in the search bar at the top. That will narrow down the logs to just backup messages. You can scroll through there and see a summary of what Time Machine is doing each time it backs up. Below is a shot from my system a few minutes ago.


    [​IMG]
     
  7. satcomer, Jan 17, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2014

    satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #7
    Since you love using Unix then look at the logs in /var/log and look in there for the log you want.

    Plus to use Time Machine from the Terminal just learn about your self by running the command:

    Code:
    man tmutil
     
  8. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #8
    Just do a restore of a few files from different places and at different times. You can restore them to different locations so you needn't overwrite the originals.
     
  9. MacNoobGuy thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2012
    #9
    Thanks! I'll try this out.
     

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