Time Machine - Your Review/Thoughts

Discussion in 'OS X Yosemite (10.10)' started by kylepro88, Feb 19, 2015.

  1. kylepro88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #1
    What has your day to day experience been with Time Machine? I've actually only used it once to restore something, which was minor. Has anyone used it extensively to get themselves out of a pickle? Who's had any major issues with it working at all?

    I don't keep many critical things on my main HD, but I am curious just how useful the Time Machine feature is.

    Any thoughts from anyone? What's your review of Time Machine?
     
  2. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #2
    Its worked perfectly for me when I have had to use it in anger, 1 full restore, couple of user migrations and 1-2 individual files.
     
  3. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #3
    I have never had to use it to restore files I deleted or lost but I have used it to restore a copy of my machine to another Mac to test out Yosemite before loading it onto our main Macs. All my files and apps restored fine and I was able to test the apps under Yosemite.

    I have run tests to make sure I can restore files by renaming the existing file and restoring the file from the backup. No problems there either. That was just a test and I wasn't depending on the backup.

    I have time machine set to back up to multiple destinations so it cycles among them if they are connected.
     
  4. jimholcomb macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Location:
    Cary, NC
    #4
    I've used it twice to do full restores on my wife's iMac. Worked great both times.

    Jim
     
  5. Mac... nificent macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    #5
    It always craps out on me after using it for a month or two. I have switched to using SuperDuper for my backups.
     
  6. Badrottie Suspended

    Badrottie

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #6
    Time Machine is great. Some entries accidentally deleted from Contact book so I had to use Time Machine to restore some entries. It has been back up regularly no problem. :apple:
     
  7. GeoFan49 macrumors member

    GeoFan49

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    Location:
    Silicon Valley, SF Bay Area, California, USA
    #7
    TimeMachine is awesome!!

    Time Machine works like magic. It just does it's thing. I have done several full restores on new hard drives (about once a year) and restored a few accidentally deleted files from time-to-time. Currently I have several boot partitions on several drives, and have paired each boot drive with a time machine backup drive (or partition.)

    So far, Time Machine just works as it should.

    FURPS:
    Functionality A+
    Usability A+
    Reliability A+
    Performance A-
    Satisfaction A+
     
  8. ItWasNotMe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2012
    #8
    Useful but beware.

    It worked well in Mavericks, for Yosemite it was rewritten - now full of errors. A sample of these:

    Critical, both introduced in Yosemite
    C1. If you use it to backup an external drive, and your TM drive has less free space than data already backed up from your external, don’t let TM run while the drive is dismounted
    • on the TM run following remount old backups will be unnecessarily deleted
    • at the extreme you may loose all your backups
    • Mavericks would scan the drive, Yosemite does a very crude, very wrong calculation
    C2. If there is a large (typically multi-GB) file copy in progress when the TM backup starts, it may not backup the whole file, just the amount already written when the backup starts. Mavericks TM would continue running and backup the whole file

    Less important
    L1. Doesn’t do hourly backups, starts a backup an hour after the previous finished, so if a backup runs for a long time, you may be more exposed than you think
    L2. Includes padding in its space requirement calculations
    • Padding no longer required as TM no longer tries to backup up files that have changed during the backup
    • At the margin, if your TM disk is nearly full can result in backups being deleted when they need not be

    So whats
    S1. Time of next backup in Preferences is often wrong, it assumes that the hour is measured from the start of the backup, not the end - see L1 above
    S2. Lots of pointless messages in the logs, such as these:
    • <Date and Time> com.apple.prefs.backup.remoteservice[2788]: Attempt to use XPC with a MachService that has HideUntilCheckIn set. This will result in unpredictable behavior: com.apple.backupd.status.xpc
    • <Date and Time> com.apple.backupd-helper[46]: Attempt to use XPC with a MachService that has HideUntilCheckIn set. This will result in unpredictable behavior: com.apple.backupd.status.xpc
    • <Date and Time> com.apple.xpc.launchd[1]: (com.apple.backupd-auto) This service is defined to be constantly running and is inherently inefficient.
    • <Date and Time> com.apple.xpc.launchd[1]: (com.apple.backupd-status) The HideUntilCheckIn property is an architectural performance issue. Please transition away from it.
     
  9. leman macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #9
    Time Machine has its issues, but in my experience, its the most convenient 'fire and forget' backup solution. I backup my server infrastructure with IBM's Tivoli Storage Manager, and Time Machine is a gift of gods compared to that crap. But if you put value on your data, I'd run at least two parallel TM backups and check them regularly.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #10
    I've had TM save my bacon on a number of occasions. I'm very happy with it. The product backs up my data easily and with a minimum of fuss and muss. I was able to restore individual files/folders and on one occasion restore the entire system.
     
  11. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
    Enjoying Better Things
    #11
    Don't use "Time Machine" prefer SuperDuper as I can still pull apps/files off if needs be and in the event of a corrupted drive or hardware failure I can boot from the image drive.

    Equally SuperDuper requires more user discipline, typically I only backup once a month, all my documents are backed up by default to iCloud & DropBox, applications I am unconcerned about as they are all licensed. Emptying Trash needs to be a consideration.

    Cloud backup of my working data works best for me as I tend to work across several machines, with the same applications, with this regime the data is always current and always physically on the drive of the system I am using...

    Q-6
     
  12. leman macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #12
    Having a bootable backup is neat (although quite useless in practice for most users). The reason why I strongly prefer TM to SuperDuper is that SD does not do versions or wireless backups. Also, the automatic nature of TM makes it more secure as a backup medium IMO.
     
  13. GerritV macrumors 65816

    GerritV

    Joined:
    May 11, 2012
    #13
    I've used TimeMachine from the beginning, combined with a Lacie external Firewire Disk. Years and years of devotion - and the day I decided to overwrite Yosemite, TimeMachine Restore failed on me.
    Whether it was TM or Lacie, I don't know. But I'll never ever use TM again.

    Chronosync is my weapon of choice.
     
  14. JamesMike macrumors demi-god

    JamesMike

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Location:
    Oregon
    #14
    It works very well, I plug in my external haddrive and it does the rest.
     
  15. Queen6, Feb 21, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2015

    Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
    Enjoying Better Things
    #15
    User choice; I don't need wireless backups as all working data is already uploaded to DropBox as soon as a change is made. As for a bootable backup, if your drive fails and your in the field working you can pickup instantly where you left off soon as DropBox updates, you can trial new or updated OS and applications on the clone drive without risking your production systems so very far from useless.

    I rely on my Mac`s for a living so reliability and productivity are paramount. TM is a reasonable file archival tool, equally with OS X`s "Versions" is less useful unless you want to resurrect a file from several months back and that`s achievable with DB for apps outside of core services.

    N.B. SuperDuper can backup wirelessly and scheduled if you set it up to do so...

    Q-6

    ----------

    TM is fine for files, for system/volume SuperDuper is the way to go. your not the first to have issue with TM nor will you be the last attempting to restore the entire system.

    As also stated having the ability to create a bootable clone drive, allows you to try out now OS iterations, updates etc. on the clone drive, without risking your primary drive. I personally have had no issue with Yosemite, however many have and no doubt wish they had a solution such as SuperDuper to revert back to Mavericks seamlessly.

    N.B. I have no affinity with the developer, equally SuperDuper has never let me down in a time of need, and saved me endless grief :apple:

    Q-6
     
  16. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #16
    I actually use a combination of TM and Carbon Copy Cloner (A SuperDuper alternative).

    I found CCC to be superior in restoring a full image then TM (when I had to restore my drive from TM completely it was slow but successful). I now use TM for those time when I need to restore documents that I accidentally deleted or over-wrote - you know those oh crap moments.

    For a system meltdown that needs to be restored - CCC is there for me.
     
  17. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
    Enjoying Better Things
    #17
    Is a good combination, equally I don't need TM with DropBox covering all my working data, and I can switch systems with ease as they remain synchronised. Maintaining multiple TM volumes would just be an additional overhead to me.

    CCC is definitely a solid solution, very similar to SD. As my Mac`s are intrinsic to the way I work, I very much like the bootable clone, as it allows me to sample and or experiment without any disruption to my primary systems.

    When 10.10.3 is released I will make a quick clone of my 10.10.2 primary, DL the combo update and test it first on the clone before updating the primary Mac, as Apple have been known to make the odd tiny mistake in the past ;)

    Q-6
     
  18. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl/en
    #18
    I restored browser profiles and some other deleted/damaged files. Do not use TM for OS upgrades (too risky; i use Disk Utility .dmg files instead since OS X 10.2.x). I use TimeMachineEditor so that TM creates backups every 6 hours (from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.).
     
  19. fisherking macrumors 601

    fisherking

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    Location:
    ny somewhere
    #19
    i love carbon copy cloner, am not using TM at all. i prefer a mirrored backup; if i delete a file, i don't need it on my backup. and the new CCC is just easy, fast.

    i ALSO use crashplan; everyone should look into an online backup system. :D
     
  20. mw360 macrumors 65816

    mw360

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    #20
    Time Machine used to be great but has been terrible since I upgraded my MBP to Yosemite.

    1. If TM is running when the MBP goes to sleep (either because of lid close or inactivity), some process locks up and when I come back into the room the fans are spinning, the Mac is burning a hole into the table and it will not wake up.

    2. After updating to Yosemite, TM needed to do a 20GB backup. Thanks to the above problem and the fact I only use the machine intermittently, two months passed without TM managing to complete a backup. (I hadn't realised the lock-ups and TM were connected). Presumably it was restarting the back-up from scratch after every failure. I got it going a couple of days ago just by babysitting it for hours.

    3. When restoring, all my files appear to be missing unless I perform all the actions in a very specific, unintuitive order. For example every folder appears to be empty until I navigate to the parent, then back into the folder. If I do things in the wrong order the whole backup appears to be missing, or the TM UI will hang for several minutes. I haven't actually tried restoring a file since Yosemite happened. I don't have great expectations that it will actually work.
     
  21. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
    Enjoying Better Things
    #21
    I would reconsider your backup solution, should you need to restore the drive I don't have high hopes it will be successful, a point worth thinking about...

    Q-6
     
  22. mw360 macrumors 65816

    mw360

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    #22
    Thanks but I don't have anything serious on there. Everything important is in Dropbox and syncs to other Macs that have working backups. If the drive fails I'll just start afresh.
     
  23. whohasaquestion macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    #23
    The problem I have with time machine is that you cannot choose which contact or photo to restore. You have to restore the entire list of contact or photo. I find that annoying.
     
  24. EdbBob macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #24
    The biggest advantage of TM is that it's very easy to use.

    You can get much more advanced backup solutions, but frankly I've seen people using those, getting fed up with the struggle, thinking that everything went fine and dandy so far, then disabling their backup, "just until they get time to fix it".

    "Doh!" doesn't do it for them, once the crap hits the fan. Trust me, I know from personal experience.
     
  25. bobr1952 macrumors 68020

    bobr1952

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, FL
    #25
    Another vote for the combo method--I use Super Duper to clone my drive--especially before OS changes--then run TM daily for incremental backups. Between the two, you should never have an issue of missing critical data.
     

Share This Page