University of Oregon

Back up Using Time Machine


Time Machine is a common back up program native to OS X versions 10.5 or later. It can be used with any normal external hard drive or with Time Capsule, a wireless external hard drive sold by Apple.


Connecting an external hard drive to your Mac for the first time will prompt the computer to query whether the drive ought to be used for back up. If you specify yes, Time Machine will automatically back up to the disk. Hourly backups will go back one day, daily backups one month, and weekly backups until your external hard drive is full.


Restoring from Backups

To restore from backups, connect your external hard drive and click on the Time Machine icon. You'll be greeted with a view of windows cascading “back in time.” A bar at the bottom displays when each backup is from.


Transferring to a New Hard Drive:

To transfer backups to a new hard drive, set Time Machine to Off, then open the backup drive in Finder and drag Backups.backupd to the new hard drive. The transfer process will take some time.