Can I access data stored in Time Machine on a PC or a Mac running an older version of OSX, or can I only retrieve TM data by using TM?

I've just had a total HDD failure on my Mac and lost all my data. I'm now considering using Time Machine but it seems to take up a lot of space and I'm not sure how easy it will be to access the files. Can the backups be accessed like any normal stored files? Will I be able to plug my Time Machine hard drive into any computer and retrieve the files manually, or can I only access them on a computer running Leopard?

  • Asked by J M from Sydney
  • Apr 3, 2010
QA Apple Time Capsule

QA Apple Time Capsule

Product No Longer Available

1 Answer from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    Yes, the files can be accessed directly, but only when used as a file share (for a PC). Otherwise, they can be retrieved by TM as usual.

    SO I mounted my disk as a shared drive and browsed to the root of the disk - there is a folder there named "Backups.backupdb", then a folder with the machine name that was backed up, then more under that with dates... then the actual files and folders that were backed up... I copied one of these to a local folder on my pc and was able to read it fine.

    • Answered by Don A from Whitby
    • Apr 6, 2010