How to Backup Your Mac with Time Machine

There’s probably not a human in the world who hasn’t wished that they could return to some previous time and do something differently. While Apple hasn’t developed technology to transport you back to that awkward first date so you can keep yourself from making that uncomfortable joke, it has found a way to temper the sting of accidentally deleting important files. 

Turn Back Time

The Mac Time Machine may be deceptively named, as it can’t actually return you to a previous time, but it can return your computer to one. When you set up time machine, it backs up your entire computer; after that, it periodically scans your files for updates, additions, or deletions. 


Time Machine keeps an hourly, daily, or weekly snapshot of your computer depending on how far back you look. This means that if you accidentally delete your final draft of an essay rather than your rough draft, you should have no problem recovering it. 

Outsourcing History

To use Time Machine effectively, you’ll need some sort of external storage. It’s simply not feasible to back up that much information on your device, so the first step in getting time machine set up on your Mac is choosing your external storage.  

After you’ve connected the device, you can open Time Machine and select the device as your backup disk. Once you’ve done that, Time Machine will take care of the rest. It’ll start by backing up your entire system that first day, then make periodic updates on a regular basis. 

There’s nothing that makes your stomach drop faster than deleting something you needed; time machine ensures you’ll never have to deal with that sensation.