9 Replies Latest reply: Jan 29, 2013 7:46 PM by Pondini
The...........Haggis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hey All...

I have just experienced a nightmare.  If anyone can help I would be in your debt.

Here we go...

I was trying to move the backup of old computer ( partition A ) to a new partition ( B ) on same ext. hard drive.   Not enough space in partition b so I looked into deleting some old backups before copying A to B using restore in disc utility.

Inside time machine I was using the cog thing to select delete backup... selected the oldest backup, thinking this would delete only the oldest backup. 

It deleted ALL the backups on A, including the latest. 

This had work files on it that are important so it's a bit of a disaster.  I have had a great backup stradegy for the last 15 years and have NEVER before lost anything.  Here is my details...

 

Macbook Pro 2.2 GHz

10.7.5

 

External drive 4 partitions

 

Partition A was backed up using 10.6

From a G5 which I deleted the files from.

 

I am hoping the files could be recovred from either the G5 or the hard drive or my trash on the macbook pro?

I have and will not do too much on my computer like disc utility stuff or empty trash etc.

It's a long shot, but anyone have any ideas..? 

Thanks in advance..


MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.5)
  • 1. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    Radiation Mac Level 5 Level 5 (4,635 points)

    Time Machine "backups" are NOT Designed to be able to delete selected backups in it, such as the oldest ones.  Never do that.  Now,

    Do NOT do anything more on the External Drive at this point!  (It would further overwrite your data there.)  Now, you need to use a "Data Recovery" product to try and save that data on the external drive.  Here is a good Reference site:

     

     

               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_data_recovery_software

     

     

    The apps Data Rescue and FIle Salvage have been recommended by other Users in this Forum before.

     

    Message was edited by: Radiation Mac

  • 2. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    The...........Haggis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks RM.... for your reply..

    Yes, I found that out the hard way.. : (

    I went with file salvage and it certainly found alot of files.   File salvage doesn't overwrite does it?

     

    My problem now is to get them back into some kind of order. 

    My computer is a music production machine so I had song files that were created in Ableton live, als. files.

     

    One "song file" or folder would be the als., a bunch of aiffs of different lengths, midi files etc etc.  To rebuild them manully would, I think, be imposible. 

    I'm happy to be wrong though.  But I am thinking I can't be the only musiicain that has had this issue... Has anyone expereienced this and had some luck somehow.. ??

     

    I am willing to try voodoo, magic or what ever it takes.  Thanks in advance for thoughts...

    Have a great day..

    m

  • 3. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    The...........Haggis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    So I have some things to add if I may.

    I used file salvage it found 1000's of files.. Good.. But in in catergories not directory path.  Not so good.  ( For example 1000's of Aiifs with no name or directory path ).

    Anyone know of another way to restore a deleted time machine file? 

    Is there a file called sparse bundle of something like that?  It is like a bookmark to the whole time machine back up?  Maybe if i found that I could rebuild the drive from files alreay salvaged..

    Any ideas ladies and gentlemen.?

     

    Thanks.

    m

  • 4. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    Radiation Mac wrote:

     

    Time Machine "backups" are NOT Designed to be able to delete selected backups in it, such as the oldest ones.

    Actually, yes, they are.  The Time Machine browser provides a way to delete either selected backups, or all backups of selected items.

     

    And, Time Machine itself routinely "thins" backups, and will delete the oldest when necessary to make room for new ones.

     

    Message was edited by: Pondini

  • 5. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    The...........Haggis wrote:

    . . .

    Inside time machine I was using the cog thing to select delete backup... selected the oldest backup, thinking this would delete only the oldest backup.

    It will delete the backup(s) you select.  Could you have selected all in error?

     

    If you really selected only the oldest one, are you sure they were all deleted?  Can you see any if you Enter Time Machine?

     

     

    I am hoping the files could be recovred from either the G5

    That's worth exploring -- what happened to the files there?  Did you delete them, or erase the drive, or what?  Have you used it much since?  

     

     

    or my trash on the macbook pro?

    No, they won't be in the trash.  When you delete via the Time Machine display, it's immediate. 

     

    Is there a file called sparse bundle of something like that?

     

    Not if you were backing-up to a directly-connected HD.  Sparse bundles are used only for network backups -- such as to a Time Capsule, or shared drive on another Mac. And they're actually harder to deal with.

  • 6. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    The...........Haggis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for your prompt reply Pondini,

     

    I could have selected all in error but I am sure I didn't.  I guess I must have.. grrr.

    I cannot see any when I enter time machine.  Path is - G5 BU / backups.backupb / myname G5 / Name / -

     

    The G5. I erased the drive using disk utility and haven't used it since.  There is 2 drives on that machine, the drive we are talking about is not bootable it's just storage.  Other drive has OS.  This may be a good thing.  It's running Leopard.

     

    it's immediate.  ... I concur : (

     

    Ina nutshell.  I had the ext drive hanging off my Mac Book pro 10.7.  Ext drive had TM backups of 2 laptops and G5.  I was accessing G5 backup by pressing option before entering TM so I could browse other backup disks.

     

    **** I thouht sparse bundles was gonna save me.. Thanks for that info.

     

    Thanks

     

    h

  • 7. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    The...........Haggis wrote:

     

    Thanks for your prompt reply Pondini,

     

    I could have selected all in error but I am sure I didn't.  I guess I must have.. grrr.

    I cannot see any when I enter time machine.

    Ok.  It's just that I've never heard of it erasing more than what was selected.     

     

    It's possible something went wrong, and at least some of the other backups are still there. Especially if no other changes have been made to the TM drive, you might try running Repair Disk on it with Disk Utility.  Unlikely to help, but it's worth a try.

     

     

    The G5. I erased the drive using disk utility and haven't used it since.  There is 2 drives on that machine, the drive we are talking about is not bootable it's just storage.

    Since you already have it, you might want to try running the File Salvage app on it (you'll probably need another HD, or at least partition, to receive whatever it finds).   The results might be more usable than the results from the TM drive, since they're "ordinary" files and folders, not all the "hard links" Time Machine uses.

     

     

    EDIT: 

     

    I had the ext drive hanging off my Mac Book pro 10.7.  Ext drive had TM backups of 2 laptops and G5.

    Hold on a minute -- how were all those backups made -- by connecting the drive directly to each Mac, or were any made over a network (wired or wireless)?  Are they / were they all in the same partition, or separate ones?

     

     

    Message was edited by: Pondini

  • 8. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    The...........Haggis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Separate partitions.  By connecting the drive directly to each mac.

     

    The File salvage app doesn't seem to do what I want though.  It found all the files.  Just in an unuseable way.  No directories just groups of files.  Maybe I used it incorrectly. 

     

    m

  • 9. Re: OMG... Time machine deleted ALL the backups, even latest..
    Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    The...........Haggis wrote:

     

    Separate partitions.  By connecting the drive directly to each mac.

    Ah, ok.   

     

     

    The File salvage app doesn't seem to do what I want though.  It found all the files.  Just in an unuseable way.  No directories just groups of files. 

    Do you mean on the G5 drive?  If you haven't tried that, it's worth a shot (assuming you did a quick erase, not a zero-out).  That had a normal file/folder structure, most of which is probably intact.

     

    TM backups use "hard links" for everything -- a much more complex structure -- the actual data isn't in the visible files or folders, so what can be recovered is usually far less organized.  Since you've apparently paid for the app already, give it a shot.