Using Old Time Machine with New iMac?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by stadidas, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. stadidas macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2006
    Kent, United Kingdom
    Hi all,

    I just today bought a new iMac to replace my old one. When I powered the new one on for the first time, I told it to restore all data from the Time Machine back up from the old machine. That all worked fine. However, when I set the time machine drive as the new machine's time machine drive, it does not recognise the existing backups i.e when I launch time machine, I can't go back through time.

    Does anyone know how to get a new machine to reference old time machine backups? Any help on this would be greatly appreciated.
  2. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    Here's a guess. Look the the name of the folder that holds all the backups. Does it match the name you gave to the new Mac or the name of the old Mac? It should match the new one. This is how TM can keep backups for multiple Macs all of the same drive.
  3. stadidas thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2006
    Kent, United Kingdom
    The structure goes Backups.backupdb > [computer name] > directories of different dates > directories with drive names.

    The computer name hasn't changed, and the drive names are the same.
  4. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    I have a similar problem, except that I'm using the same machine.

    I had the logic board replaced under warranty, and my old TM backup is not recognized as belonging to my machine. It creates a new backup and I cannot go back in time with the old. My machine is called "thor" and matches the old backup name. But TM created a new backup called "thor 2." I did not use it for a restore since I had a SuperDuper clone to use.
  5. ltldrummerboy macrumors 68000


    Oct 15, 2007
    This has been discussed in many other threads. Basically, it can't be done. Not that I've read of at least.

    The easiest thing to do would be to delete your backup folder and start over.
  6. j-a-x macrumors 65816


    Apr 15, 2005
    Houston, Texas
    I had the same question, and that is what I had to do in the end (Format my backup drive and start over). I felt terrible deleting months of backups, but I guess its okay since I rarely have to go back and retrieve old files, and at least I had my current home folder transfered from the old computer via. Time Machine before I did the formatting.

    It's kind of weird that there is no way to keep backing up to the same Time Machine backup file after using Time Machine to transfer your files to a new computer.

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