4 Replies Latest reply: Aug 5, 2012 3:43 PM by Stephen Spark
Bill3 Level 2 Level 2 (270 points)

After recent problems with iCloud resulting in loss of data, I am now entering contacts as "On My Mac".  Before the default account was iCloud, so contacts were not on iMac when data was lost.


What I would like to do, if possible, is add new contacts (in default "On My Mac") and have them automatically added to iCloud.  That way I will always have a copy on iMac secure.  iMac backed up regualrly.  Was a big pain getting contacts restored.



iMac, OS X Mountain Lion
  • Csound1 Level 8 Level 8 (43,335 points)

    That is not possible, On My Mac contacts will not sync with the iCloud account, you can do it manually though.


    The simplest method be to periodically export your local contacts to a vcard file then import the file into your icloud contacts.

  • Bill3 Level 2 Level 2 (270 points)

    I was afraid of the answer, but wanted confirmation.  I do like a lot of things about iCloud, but I get in trouble with it more than anything.



  • Stephen Spark Level 4 Level 4 (2,415 points)

    There is nothing wrong with sticking to the iCloud Contacts only even on your Mac. As long as you are running a Time Maching back up even the iCloud Contacts are stored on the Mac and can be restored even if deleted through iCloud.


    To recover through Time Machine open Contacts on your Mac and with it being the active app open Time Machine.

  • Bill3 Level 2 Level 2 (270 points)



    I use Carbon Copy Cloner as backup instead of iCloud.  Where does iCloud keep contacts on the iMac?

  • Stephen Spark Level 4 Level 4 (2,415 points)

    iCloud is not really a place to back up data but more of a place to share data between your devices. I also use CCC but also have a Time Machine back up running on another drive which does make recovering some data much easier. The cost of an extra drive to keep a Time Machine backup is well worth it and supplements a full CCC disk image quite well.


    I am not very familiar with recovering Contacts from the file system and the individual cards may be in vairous places with a cryptic file names. To open your User Library folder with a Finder window open click the Go button in the menu bar then press the Option key on your keyboard to make "Library" appear. You'll find the contacts in User/Library/Application Support/AddressBook. The Mac's contacts should be in the Metadata folder, in Mountain Lion I found the iCloud account's contacts in the same place but in the Sources/"cryptic number folder"/Metadata. Each contact has a cryptic number name but you can see which ones they are using Quick Look.