There are a multitude of ways to lose or accidentally delete files. Sometimes it’s your own fault and sometimes it’s the cause of sneaky malware. Whatever the case, it’s good to know the basic of file recovery so that you can get your information back! Time Machine is a simple app that comes with many Mac products and it will save you some grey hairs and tears when an accident happens.
Unlike third party applications, Time Machine must be configured before you lose your data. So if you’re reading this after having already lost a file then unfortunately you’re too late. Set up and configure Time Machine as soon as possible so that it can begin backing up your data. This will save you a lot of time and headaches down the road.
Second Step: Smart Saving
Make sure that the files you back up with Time Machine go to a separate device or server. Don’t simply back them up to your existing locations because if there’s a hardware malfunction, all of your back up efforts will have been for nothing.
Once you’ve got everything on Time Machine configured, all you’ve got to do is enter it and search for the file you want. In traditional Apple style, the interface has been simplified so that you choose a specific date from a calendar and within that date you choose the file. Remember that Time Machine can’t find data from before it was configured—so configure it now!
Fourth Step (optional)
Now and then things go really wrong and you need to just completely restore your system. You can connect two Macs and put the Time Machine back ups from one onto another, much the way you’d use a traditional recovery disk. This is an excellent feature that you hopefully won’t need, but will prove invaluable if you do.
Fifth Step: Back ups and Multiple Locations
Time Machine will also help you backup your email. This is great, especially if you use your email as a backup to your computer. You should try to link your servers, drives, and devices together so that they create a chain of back ups for each other. This way you’ll always have another option. What’s better is that Time Machine will let you store individual emails so that you don’t need to backup an entire inbox. Doing this is as simple as entering Time Machine, finding the email in question and clicking “Restore”.
With a little bit of experimentation you can master the basics of Time Machine and learn how to do even more. The important thing is to be proactive and think ahead. Don’t wait until the last minute to come up with backup solutions because by then it may just be too late!