How to Change Time Machine Backup Schedule? 

Time Machine supports a backup schedule. This page tells how to change the Time Machine backup schedule and introduces a professional backup tool.

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Updated by Daisy on Jul 20, 2023
Written by Sherly

Have you ever performed a Mac Time Machine backup? How much do you know about it? Time Machine is a built-in professional application in macOS that can automate the process of backing up data to an external drive. Users are free to use it to back up their Macs. But, do you know what it can back up? Can it back up everything? The answer is no. 

What Can Time Machine Backup?

Time Machine allows users to have a backup schedule as a built-in backup program. However, it can not allow users to back up everything on Macs.

time machine

There is a table to help you know what it can back up and can not back up.

Can Can't
  • Apps
  • Music
  • Photos
  • Email
  • Documents
  • iOS devices
  • iCloud content
  • Email messages or accounts
  • Network settings
  • Certain system files and applications

We have learned what Time Machine can and can't back up. But do you know if it can automatically back up or not? Continue to read.

Tip: If you have other questions about Time Machine backups, this link may enlighten you.

Does Mac Time Machine Automatically Back up?

Yes, Time Machine supports manual backups and automatic backups. Its automatic backup schedule rules are as follows:

  • Local snapshots as space permits
  • Hourly backups for the past 24 hours
  • Daily backups for the past month
  • Weekly backups for all previous months

It means Time Machine will automatically back up every hour. It is convenient, but not everyone needs to have an hourly backup, so how do we disable hourly backups? Let's find the answer in the next paragraph.

How to Set or Change Time Machine Backup Schedule?

Besides switching Time Machine off or manually skipping a backup every time Time Machine starts to run, users can use TimeMachineScheduler. It saves time by disabling the automatic backup of Time Machine and installing its launchd daemon.

timemachinescheduler logo

But how can we use it to change the Time Machine backup schedule? Let's put TimeMachineScheduler into practice in the next part.

How to Change Time Machine Backup Schedule?

Time Machine backup schedule can bring convenience to users, but meanwhile, it will also occupy too much space and affect the operating speed, so how can we disable hourly backups?

In this part, you can know an excellent helper, TimeMachineScheduler. Now, let's see how to change the Time Machine backup schedule with it.

Change Time Machine Backup Schedule with TimeMachineScheduler

Before we start to change Time Machine Backup Schedule, let's learn something more about TimeMachineScheduler. Its main functions are as follows:

  • Set the backup interval from 1 to 12 hours.
  • Run the backup manually or automatically at startup or when the daemon has been loaded.
  • Show the status of the daemon and the backup volume and if the backup is currently running.

TimeMachineScheduler works on every version of Mac OS X and macOS, including Time Machine. But do you know how to use it? Follow these steps, and you can change your Time Machine backup schedule.

Step 1. Download and install TimeMachineScheduler.

Step 2. Click this app and launch it.

Step 3. Slide the Backup Interval slider based on your needs between 1 and 12.

choose the interval

Step 4. Click "Apply".

After changing the Time Machine backup schedule, users can have more reasonable backups. Besides TimeMachineScheduler, is there any other tool to help with Mac backups? Sure, you will know a utility alternative to Time Machine in the next part, EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac.

Time Machine Backup Alternative Software - EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac

This part will guide you to use EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac to finish an efficient backup plan. Now, follow these steps and you can learn how to use it.

Step 1. Launch and run EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac.
Click the first Backup tab or simply click the + button in the bottom-left corner to create a backup project - name the backup project and click OK.

Set up to backup Mac data without Time Machine.

Step 2. Set up the backup destination where you want to store Mac files as backups, automatic backup frequency, etc and click OK.

Backup Mac data without Time Machine.

Step 3. Add files and folders to the backup project.
Click File+ to selectively choose files and folders to add to the backup and click the blue start button to back up your Mac to another drive or external device.

Backup Mac files and data with Time Machine alternative software.

As an ideal companion for Time Machine, EaseUS Todo Backup For Mac can back up data from any Mac device and reduce data loss. Users are stress-free to use it to finish an automatic backup.

Besides, it allows users to back up files in full, deferential, incremental modes. Its specific features are as follows:

  • Disk clone and file sync
  • Encrypt backup files to protect privacy
  • Automated backup schedule in stealth mode
  • Compress backup files to save storage space
  • Archive files to the other hard drive, network volume, CD, or DVD

As a utility backup tool, EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac can free you from trifle steps and meet all kinds of backup needs.

Time Machine Backup Schedule: Verdict

This article shows how to change the Time Machine backup schedule with TimeMachineScheduler and introduces a utility backup software for Mac, EaseUS Todo Backup for Mac. It can backup Mac without Time Machine. Therefore, it is a good alternative backup software to Time Machine.

By the way, if you want to back up with Time Machine in Windows, you may need this link:

FAQs About Time Machine Backup Schedule

We have learned how to change Time Machine Backup Schedule in the content above. Here, this part list three questions related to the Time Machine backup schedule.

1. How do I schedule a Time Machine backup on Mac?

Follow these steps, and you can have your Time Machine automatically back up.

Step 1. Choose the Apple menu and click "System Preference".

Step 2. Select Time Machine.

Step 3. Tick "Back Up Automatically".

2. How often does Apple Time Machine back up?

Apple Time Machine automatically has hourly backups for the past 24 hours and daily backups for the last month, as well as weekly backups for all previous months.

3. How often should I back up my Mac with Time Machine?

The backup frequency depends on your needs. Time Machine can automatically back up every hour, and you can change the interval based on your needs with TimeMachineScheduler.

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Updated by Daisy

Daisy is the Senior editor of the writing team for EaseUS. She has been working in EaseUS for over ten years, starting from a technical writer to a team leader of the content group. As a professional author for over 10 years, she writes a lot to help people overcome their tech troubles.

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Written by Sherly

Sherly joined EaseUS in 2022 and she has always loved writing articles and enjoys the fun they bring. She receives professional training here, focusing on product performance and other relative knowledge.

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