Verifying Time Machine Backups

Discussion in 'OS X Yosemite (10.10)' started by RdeLassus, Jan 16, 2015.

  1. RdeLassus macrumors regular

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    #1
    Does anyone know how to verify that my Time Machine backups are usable should my hard drive crash? I don't use a time capsule for my backups so I don't think I can use the 'Verify Backup' option in time machine.
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #2
    Try holding the option key down then click the TM menu item and you should see verify backups there.

    I have a Time Capsule, but I think it will be there for a local USB backup also. Not sure though.
     
  3. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

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    #3
    Wow, thanks! This works also on OS X 10.6.x (FW800 TM-HDD)!
     
  4. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #4
    This works for me on local USB backup (if the drive is attached obviously).

    Alternatively depending on OP's level of confidence, simply go into the Time Machine, browse and restore some sample individual files, then check the data files are what they appear by opening them...
     
  5. golfnut1982 macrumors regular

    golfnut1982

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  6. newellj macrumors 601

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    #6
    I run TM backups on both a second internal disk and on an external disk. "Verify backup" is grayed out when I press the Option key. Some searching indicates it may only work on a TC backup? I'm running Yosemite.
     
  7. RdeLassus thread starter macrumors regular

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    #7
    I will have to try that this evening. Our external hard drive is attached to our wireless router as a network drive. Not sure if the option would be available on our setup or not.

    ----------

    That's what I had thought as well.

    ----------

    I didn't realize that you were able to restore individual files through Time Machine. I had thought that it was a restore the entire machine to a previous state type of software... then again, we've never had to use it so that may be why...
     
  8. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

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    #8
    This is the main feature of Time Machine : allowing to restore a file/folder/application, etc... that got lost or damaged.

    For testing purposes, you can "Enter Time Machine", select a file/folder, right-click on it, and select a destination (desktop for example), rather than using the large "Restore" button that would restore the file/folder to its original location.
     
  9. mooblie macrumors 6502

    mooblie

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    #9
    This worked for a NAS-stored (AFP) backup too with Mavericks. Thanks for the tip.
     
  10. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

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    #10
    In my experience (excluding Time Machine in Yosemite), the Time Machine menu approach to verification is normally offered only where a Time Machine server is used. Keyword AFP.

    With or without AFP, it's important to note that verification is subject to the constraints of HFS Plus and fsck_hfs. Whilst the file system may appear to be OK, there may be problems with the disk, or data …
     
  11. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

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    #11
    And that is why I prefer to go through the restore file etc. procedure every so often, just to be sure.
     
  12. hank moody macrumors 6502

    hank moody

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    #12
    i did this but the "verify backups option" it's gray! Can't click in it.

    Any thoughts?
     
  13. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #13
    I was thinking the same thing, but we have two members in this thread reporting it works with locally attached storage (USB/FW), so it may be OS version dependent.

    I don't really know. Like I mentioned above, it seems different depending on what OS X version you are on.
     
  14. newellj, Jan 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015

    newellj macrumors 601

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    #14
    10.10.1 here - grayed out. Drive is an external HDD via USB 3.0 connection.
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #15
    Is your TM disk directly attached or networked?
     
  16. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #16
    Mine is certainly now staying greyed out on USB attached, can't say for sure when that appeared in full and now stays grey but I'd suspect it appeared under the last Mavericks release and probably changed again under 10.10.1

    I've never had any Beta loaded so can't be that.
     
  17. BasicGreatGuy, Jan 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015

    BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

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    #17
    The option command also works with my NAS (WD MyCloud) attached via ethernet or wifi.
     
  18. newellj macrumors 601

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    #18
    The drives are WD and Seagate external USB 3.0 HDDs attached via USB port. Sorry, should have been clearer in my post.
     
  19. deany macrumors 68020

    deany

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    #19
    What does "Verify backup" actually do?
    Does it confirm data is not corrupt?
    thanks
     
  20. KALLT macrumors 601

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    Sep 23, 2008
    #20
    Nope, it only verifies the disk image on which the backup is located. If it finds a problem, it will tell you to start over. That is the reason why it is only available for network drives, such as Time Capsule. This verification will be performed periodically by the system, so you don’t need to do it yourself. On a local backup, you will be using Disk Utility instead.

    Verifying the integrity of the files themselves is something that is only possible since El Capitan via the tmutil utility (but only for new files). Unfortunately, Apple has not exposed it to the GUI. You can use it to verify checksums that it creates when it first copies the files to the backup drive.
     
  21. deany macrumors 68020

    deany

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    #21
    Thank you for taking the time and trouble to write your helpful post.

    I'm using a Time Capsule which I like very much as is also gives me Wi-Fi as well.
     

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