View What Time Machine Backs Up 9

Time Machine

View What Time Machine Backs Up


Time Machine is great for the average consumer of Mac’s. You don’t need to think about backing up files it just does it for you. But sometimes you have to wonder, what exactly does Time Machine backup? Some times, when I haven’t do a lot file creating, it backups around 2Gb of files. Some clever person has created a small perl application that scans your Time Machine backup for changes and displays them in Terminal.

The firs step is to download the timedog app. Its a small executable. Unzip the executable.

[download id=”5″]

Next open up Terminal. We are going to move the executable so it can be activated from any folder and you don’t have to write the path every time. In Terminal type

cd ~/downloads
sudo cp timedog /usr/local/bin

This will change the directory to your downloads folder, you will have to change this if you have a different downloads folder. It will then copy it into you local binary folder. This is a system protected area as a result you have to use you admin password to copy across the file. You can delete the timedog file in your downloads file when you have finished all of the steps.

The next step is to change Terminal to you Time Machine folder. In Terminal again type:

cd /Volumes/Time\ Machine/Backups.backupdb/[Computer Name]

You have to cross check the path correctly in Finder. The backslah (\) escapes any spaces. For example if you computer name has a couple of spaces in it or you Time Machine disk isn’t called “Time Machine”, you should use backslashes to escape them properly.

The final step is to invoke timedog, simply type the following:

timedog -d 5 -l

The -d option is the depth of files. If you have millions of files to backup you may find the Terminal output gets long. This cuts it down to only 5 folders deep. The -l modifier is linked to symbolic links that Time Machine creates. I would keep this option to to display the best output.

A simple little script. It looks clean from what I have seen although caution should be taken. It is interesting what Time Machine exactly backs up.

Via: Mac OS X Hints

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