Time Machine Preferences once Ext Hard Drive is full

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by ktraphagen, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. ktraphagen macrumors newbie

    Dec 8, 2008
    I've got an external hard drive that I've been using for a year with my MacBook Pro for Time Machine backups. I assumed (incorrectly, I guess), that once the drive was full, Time Machine would start to delete the oldest backups so there would be room for new ones. This apparently is not the case, at least I have not found anyone at Apple yet who can tell me what to do other than to buy a larger hard drive.

    Does anyone know of a way to change preferences in Time Machine so that once the external HD is full it will still do backups and delete the oldest?

  2. lssmit02 macrumors 6502

    Mar 25, 2004
    TM should delete older backups

    Link to Apple support page that says that it does delete: "Also, as your backup disk fills up, Time Machine deletes older backups to make room for new ones."

    Pretty good discussion here of how it works. Scroll down to see Glenn Carter's post.
  3. ktraphagen thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 8, 2008
    Thanks. That's all very helpful. I think the issue is that my backups are getting too large for the external hard drive (never thought I would see that day). I misunderstood the error message as meaning that there was no more room to do a backup because the disk was simply full, instead, the issue is that the files to be backed up have exceeded the external drive. Again, thanks.

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