Skip navigation

HT1427: Mac Basics: Time Machine backs up your Mac

Learn about Mac Basics: Time Machine backs up your Mac

HT1427 Where are the Time Machine step by step instructions?

371 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Sep 25, 2013 4:29 AM by Barney-15E RSS
ronpyatt Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Sep 24, 2013 3:19 PM

I'm looking for the screen shots of how to even start setting up the time machine. I see the instructions for once you get there, but it doesn't do me any good if it can't show me how to start. This should be easy to pull up. This is a Mac. This should be fairly straightforward. Right? So, why no instuctions on how to start Time Machine, its options, settings, and all that?

MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8)
  • Barney-15E Level 7 Level 7 (33,430 points)

    It's pretty simple if you connect a new hard drive to your Mac. Time Machine will ask if you want to use it. Click yes and you're done setting it up.


    If it is not a new hard drive, or you have previously declined, open Time Machine Prefs, Select Disk, Done.


    What else do you want to "set up?"


    There really are no other options or settings unless you want to exclude items.

    Click on Options..., Select the items you want to Exclude, Save. Done.

    If you select system folders, it will ask if you want to exlcude all system folders and just back up data.

  • Barney-15E Level 7 Level 7 (33,430 points)

    System Preferences. Time Machine.

    System Preferences is something you should know about if you do not. You can access it from the Apple Menu, and it is a default item in the Dock.


    I have no idea where there are screen shots.

    There's one slider and two buttons. Not really a lot to look at, or be confused by.

    The slider says ON and OFF.

    One button says "Select Disk"

    The other says "Options..."


    If you wish to select a disk, choose "Options..."

    Just kidding.


    There are no "magical options."


    For Step by step instructions:

    To turn on Time Machine:

    1. Slide switch to On.

    To turn off Time Machine:

    1. Slide switch to Off

    To select a disk to use:

    1. Click Select Disk.

    2. Select a Disk.

    To Remove a Disk:

    1. Click Select Disk.

    2. Select Disk.

    3. Click Remove Disk.

    To exclude Items:

    1. Click Options...

    2. Click Add (  + ) button.

    3. Select folder to exclude.

    4. Click Save.

    To remove items from exclusion:

    1. Click Options...

    2. Select item

    3. Click Remove ( - ) button.

    4. Click Save.

  • Barney-15E Level 7 Level 7 (33,430 points)

    Here's a video. It is a bit out of date, though.

  • nbar Level 5 Level 5 (6,510 points)

    The definitive reference for time machine, in my opinion:




  • Barney-15E Level 7 Level 7 (33,430 points)

    You need to learn more about using a Mac. System Preferences is a fundimental part of configuring your Mac.

    I would just poke around inside of it, but there might be something in some of the videos you can find at the same place as the other.


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.