Here are some of the most commonly received Time Machine Backup (macOS) related questions we receive at our Micro Center stores:
Q: How often does Time Machine create backups?
A. Time Machine tries to keep hourly backups for the last 24 hours, daily backups for the last month, and weekly backups for all previous months, as long there enough space on the Time Machine drive.
Q: What if I accidentally disconnect my drive? Do I have to set Time Machine up again?
A. If the Time Machine drive has been disconnected for more than an hour, reconnecting it will cause Time Machine to create a backup. If the drive is always connected it will make backups for you every hour automatically.
Q: How do I set up Time Machine to a new drive?
A: Open Time Machine preferences from the Time Machine icon in the top right menu bar. Click Select Backup Disk and select your external drive. Click Use Disk and Time Machine should now be set up.
Q: How do I restore from a Time Machine backup?
A. The Migration Assistant can be used to perform the restore. Migration Assistant has a specific prompt to restore from a Time Machine backup. Please see our guide “How to restore from Time Machine” for more information.
Q: What is included in a Time Machine backup?
A. The backup is a snapshot of your entire system. It includes files, documents, pictures, applications, operating system files, and settings.
Q: Will a Time Machine backup save my applications and settings?
A. Yes. All applications and settings are saved by Time Machine.
Q: Do I need to have my Time Machine drive connected to my Mac for backups to be created?
A. Yes. Your Mac will notify you if you have left your Time Machine drive disconnected and prevented backups from taking place.
Q: Can a Time Machine backup be used to restore macOS?
A. Yes. The entire operating system is captured by Time Machine, so an entire restore can be performed directly from Time Machine. To do this, press and hold Command + R upon startup. In the Mac OS Utilities, choose the Restore from Time Machine backup option. Follow the prompts and select the backup you want to use.