After you've set it up, Time Machine monitors your files, keeping track of any changes so your backups are always up-to-date. It runs silently in the background, so you don't have to remember to back up your data, it'll just happen.
Time Machine keeps hourly backups for the last 24 hours, daily backups for the last week, and weekly backups going further back. Old backups are deleted when your backup disk gets full.
Use one of the following types of storage with Time Machine, to keep a copy of your files secure, away from your Mac:
Follow these steps to set up Time Machine on your Mac:
Connect the backup drive to your Mac. The first time you do this you'll be asked about using it for Time Machine - click Use as Backup Disk.
Time Machine should open automatically. If it doesn't, click Apple > System Preferences > Time Machine.
Click Select Backup Disk / Select Disk / Add or Remove Backup Disk in the main window.
Choose the backup disk from the list, then click Use Disk.
You might be asked to erase the disk to use it for backing up. If you are, click Erase.
Tap the switch to turn Time Machine on, or tick the Back Up Automatically box (depending on which version of the operating system you're running. Time Machine works in the background, backing up all your changes as long as the backup drive is connected.
Time Machine's now set up to back up all your files regularly. Click Options to change which folders are backed up, whether Time Machine will work on battery power (MacBooks only), and if you'd like to be told when old backups are deleted.
You can use Time Machine to restore any amount of files, from a single picture to a complete system backup.
If you only need to recover a few files or a folder or two, then the following steps will guide you through it.
If you need to restore everything, you can use 'Recovery Console' (if you're resetting your Mac completely) or 'Migration Assistant' (if you're swapping machines) to help you recover your files.
Open a window for the item you want to restore
Click the Time Machine icon on the Menu bar, or click Apple > System Preferences > Time Machine.
Find what you want to restore:
Hopefully you've got all the information you need to help you back up your Mac, but if you'd like to speak to a Team Knowhow Expert you can contact us here.
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