How to back up your Mac with Time Machine — Apple Support

How to back up your Mac with Time Machine — Apple Support


Time Machine is the built-in
backup feature on your Mac that always keeps
an up-to-date copy of everything
on your computer stored on
an external backup disk. Here’s how to set it up. To begin,
choose a backup disk to store
your Time Machine backups. Backups require a lot of space, so it’s a good idea
to pick a device that is used solely for them. You can use
an external hard drive that you plug into your Mac, or you can wirelessly connect
to an AirPort Time Capsule a compatible network-attached
storage device, or another Mac. Find out more
about these options in the link in the description. We’re going to use
an external hard drive. When you plug
a backup disk into your Mac a pop-up window may ask
if you want to use the drive to backup your Mac
with Time Machine. If you see it,
click Use as Backup Disk. If you don’t see the prompt, set up Time Machine
in System Preferences. Click on the Apple menu,
click System Preferences, then click Time Machine. To start the setup process, click Select Backup Disk
and choose your disk. From here,
you can encrypt your backup with a passcode,
if you’d like. Then click Use Disk. Depending on your setup,
you may see additional prompts to help you add a passcode,
reformat your device, or connect
to your network volume. Now your computer
will prepare the disk and your backup
will begin shortly after. Your first backup
may take a long time depending on
how many files you have, but you can continue using your
Mac while a backup is underway. Time Machine only backs up
files that have changed since the previous backup, so future backups
will be faster. After your first backup, Time Machine backs up everything
for you automatically so you don’t have to remember
to do it yourself. Time Machine
makes local snapshots hourly backups
up to 24 hours, daily backups
for the past month, and weekly backups
for all previous months. Plus, the oldest backups
are deleted when your disk becomes full. And if you want
to access Time Machine more quickly in the future, click Show Time Machine
in the menu bar. Once your backup is complete,
you’ll see a notification. To start a new backup
at any time, click the Time Machine icon on the right side
of the menu bar, then click Back Up Now If a backup
is already in progress, you can skip a backup
from this menu. And now your files
are safely backed up. For more helpful tips like this, subscribe to
the Apple Support channel or click a video
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