6/18/10
9:56 am

Forum Question: New OS Install and Time Machine Backup

With the new upgrade to the OS – Time machine is now asking to create a new backup – which will result it losing my history of the old backup.

Is there any way to keep the old backup history? Sometimes, I delete stuff of my computer, knowing that if I do need it, I have a backup history to go back to – but with this new update, everything will be lost.

— Nash

Comments: 13 Responses to “New OS Install and Time Machine Backup”

    6/18/10 @ 10:01 am

    What do you mean by “upgrade to the new OS?” Do you mean the update to 10.6.4 this week? Or do you mean you just installed Snow Leopard?
    Either way, an upgrade shouldn’t ask you to create a new backup.
    Unless you wiped the drive and started fresh with Snow Leopard.
    Are you sure you can’t select the old TM backup when initializing TM?
    You could always start a new TM backup drive and keep the old one around for a few weeks.
    As you’ve probably figured out, you should never use backups to store files you think you might need. Create archives for that — separate from backups. Using TM as an archive history is not what it is meant for — or what any backup solution is meant for.

      Cynthia McTyre
      12/22/11 @ 11:46 am

      Oh, I thought that if Time Machine were saving everything for me, I should be able to access what it saved. What is it actually worth, then?

        12/22/11 @ 12:30 pm

        It is worth a lot if your hard drive crashes, your Mac is stolen or lost, or you made a big mistake and deleted a file you need.
        Think of it like air bags in a car. That are priceless if you are in a bad accident, but you don’t crash into walls on purpose because you have them. So don’t use your backup as an archive of old data. Only delete things you never want to see again.

    Nash
    6/18/10 @ 10:07 am

    Yes, it was a upgrade to the 10.6.4 that’s asking me to create a new backup….

      6/18/10 @ 10:13 am

      That’s odd. I definitely didn’t have to do that. Are you sure nothing else changed? I haven’t heard of this happening to anyone else. Perhaps something happened to your TM backup drive? I think this may be another issue, and nothing to do with the update to 10.6.4, which was a pretty light update.

    Nash
    6/18/10 @ 9:08 pm

    The message that I get is:

    Time Machine completed a verification of your backups. To improve reliability, Time Machine must create a new backup for you.

    Maybe it’s just a fluke that it happens right after I did the update…….

    Dale
    7/28/10 @ 3:15 pm

    My laptop did the same thing- twice now! There’s no way out! I have to lose everything and start from scratch! What’s wrong with that picture!!!

    Justin
    7/29/10 @ 7:22 am

    I am in the same boat as Dale. It’s done it to me weekly for the last few weeks. i thought that it was supposed to be a one-time affair! any clues, anyone?

      7/29/10 @ 7:25 am

      The only thing I can add is you are right: it is supposed to be a one-time affair. I’ve been using Time Machine since it came out, with various hard drives (never Time Capsule, tho) and I’ve never had this happen.
      I almost wonder if there is something wrong with the physical drive itself — it gives errors and that triggers TM to do this.

        7/29/10 @ 7:28 am

        This page at Apple gives some useful info. http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4076
        It also has instructions about using Disk Utility to check the drive yourself (but not repair it). I’d try that to see what the problem really is. Perhaps it would give some insight into the problem.

    Rich O
    10/27/10 @ 12:39 am

    I am experiencing something similar I believe. Recently, I had a hard drive failure in my iMac (late 2009 model). luckily I was within Warranty and I had been using Time Machine and my backups were up to date. The Apple store replaced the hard drive and reinstalled the OS and all updates to 10.6.4. I ran Migration Assistant and my iMac is back to the state it was before the problems. HOWEVER, now, instead of Time Machine picking up where it left off, it wants to backup EVERYTHING AGAIN! all 270+ GBs of Data. any thoughts?

    two theories on this for you to consider: 1) do hard drive serial #’s factor into the TM process? and/or 2) did it matter that when I turned on my newly refreshed iMac that it wasn’t in the “fresh-outta-the-box state” — meaning that they created AND NAMED an Admin account with my full name, which TM readily warned me that it could NOT proceed with 2 identical log ins…which forced me to rename one of them. just grasping at straws here.

    any thoughts on this?

    thanks.

      10/27/10 @ 6:35 am

      Hard to say. Maybe both. Or maybe the fact that when they re-installed the system it meant that 90%+ of the files were “new” anyway. In fact, since all of the files are “new” on the drive, TM would need to create a complete backup anyway to make sure it had the most recent version of those files.
      But most likely it sees the Mac/OS/users as a completely new machine and wouldn’t be able to match the old files with the new replacements.

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