Time Machine Backup Excludes My Startup Drive

Created at: 2021-03-12 06:13:14
Questioner General

Not sure if I have my wires crossed but I was just checking my Time Machine back-up preferences and it seems to exclude my startup drive which has all my files on it that I want backed up…



When I remove my startup drive from the preferences and click save, on opening the Time Machine preferences again it adds my startup drive. I am a bit mystified? Is this because I have specific items from my startup disk also on the exclusion list which I ask Time Machine not to back-up?



I have checked the data on my two external back-up drives and it seems to be doing what I want so I am curious and a little worried - should I be?

Answer #1:

By: Madelyn Toy

Not sure if I have my wires crossed but I was just checking my Time Machine back-up preferences and it seems to exclude my startup drive which has all my files on it that I want backed up…



When I remove my startup drive from the preferences and click save, on opening the Time Machine preferences again it adds my startup drive. I am a bit mystified? Is this because I have specific items from my startup disk also on the exclusion list which I ask Time Machine not to back-up?



I have checked the data on my two external back-up drives and it seems to be doing what I want so I am curious and a little worried - should I be?

Answer #2:

By: Issac Quitzon

Hello, and welcome to Apple Support Communities GazzaMataz,



We can see from your post that you have questions regarding your Time Machine backup. We can understand your concern! You want to keep your data safe.



To make sure you're set, check this out: Back up your Mac with Time Machine. We're offering it because you've mentioned that you've gone through the settings. By checking all settings, it might show you something that could be missing.



Next, we're sharing this guide: Time Machine troubleshooting on Mac. We have it set to macOS Monterey, and if needed you can change it to your current version if there is a difference. We'd suggest keeping this handy as a resource, and you'd want to focus on the section "An incomplete, interrupted, or failed backup occurred". It has links to verify your disk and what to do if certain files are missing.



Take care.

Answer #3:

By: Miss Ayla Brakus

Hello, and welcome to Apple Support Communities GazzaMataz,



We can see from your post that you have questions regarding your Time Machine backup. We can understand your concern! You want to keep your data safe.



To make sure you're set, check this out: Back up your Mac with Time Machine. We're offering it because you've mentioned that you've gone through the settings. By checking all settings, it might show you something that could be missing.



Next, we're sharing this guide: Time Machine troubleshooting on Mac. We have it set to macOS Monterey, and if needed you can change it to your current version if there is a difference. We'd suggest keeping this handy as a resource, and you'd want to focus on the section "An incomplete, interrupted, or failed backup occurred". It has links to verify your disk and what to do if certain files are missing.



Take care.

Answer #4:

By: Arch Raynor

GazzaMataz wrote:


Not sure if I have my wires crossed but I was just checking my Time Machine back-up preferences and it seems to exclude my startup drive which has all my files on it that I want backed up…


When I remove my startup drive from the preferences and click save, on opening the Time Machine preferences again it adds my startup drive. I am a bit mystified? Is this because I have specific items from my startup disk also on the exclusion list which I ask Time Machine not to back-up?


I have checked the data on my two external back-up drives and it seems to be doing what I want so I am curious and a little worried - should I be?



Simply enough to reformat that problem drive and start a fresh backup.

Answer #5:

By: Florida Schroeder

OK thanks for this much appreciated :-)



I have checked my backups and they both seem to be backing up my data fine. On restarting my iMac and looking at my Time Machine preferences it shows that my startup disk is not being excluded any more so perhaps there was just some hiccup when one of the backup drives was accidentally disconnected.



One of the problems that I have encountered periodically is that since I boot from an external SSD sometimes my iMac decides to boot from the old internal drive with the older OS on it. It has done this ever since I installed a security update back in January and this freaked me out since I thought it had wiped out my latest external boot disk. Fortunately I manged to reinstall everything from my Time Machine backup but I then decided to make two backups rather than one.



I would backup my photos to iCloud but there are so many of them it could prove expensive and time consuming.