Time Machine For PC Windows {32 & 64bit} & MAC Full Free Download

Time Machine For PC

Time Machine For PC Windows {32 & 64bit} & MAC Full Free Download

The other way to restore Time Machine backups on Windows is using any third party tools which can read HFS, HFS+, and HFSX file systems. Luckily there are few such tools available in the market while some of them come with a price tag. Windows and OS X are two different platforms, technically we can only view all the Time Machine backups and its files using these tools, but we can not restore settings or applications. However, you can export all your files from Time Machine backups to Windows manually with the software programs which can read drives formatted in HFS+ files system.

How to Access and Restore Time Machine Backup Files on Windows

Time Machine For PC backups is a powerful and useful feature every Apple users prefer to secure their personal and professional data. Being a developer, I regularly commit my code to BitBucket for backups and to safeguard personal files and memories; I use Time Machine backup every week. I will connect my 1 TB WD passport external hard drive to Mac, and it creates the latest backup every time. Everything looks good from outside, but the real problem starts when you want to access Time Machine backups on Windows PC or laptop. Recently my MacBook Pro denied to power on even after PRAM, NVRAM, and SMC reset, and I switched to Windows laptop till it gets repaired.

When I tried to connect my external hard drive, Windows failed to detect it since Mac formats the hard drive in HFS+ format while creating the first Time Machine backup. Unfortunately, Windows only supports NTFS and FAT32 file systems, and it can not detect Mac formatted hard disks and disk images. The one way to connect your Time Machine backup drive to Windows is by formatting it in any of the Windows supported file system. But formatting will delete all Time Machine backups permanently, and we don’t want to do this.

Copying Time Machine Backups to Windows

HFS Explorer from Cotacombae and HFS+ for Windows by Paragon are two popular softwares for Windows to read HFS, HFS+ and HFSX files systems. The former is a free tool with basic user interface but requires Java whereas the latter is a more advanced HFS+ reader with the rich interface but comes with a price tag. However, HFS+ for Windows offers a 7-day free trial which is quite enough to test and understand the software. Both tools have its pros and cons – you need to pick one of your choices.

If you want to restore Time Machines backups to Windows frequently and don’t want to install Java on your device, then HFS+ for Windows is the best option for you. But paying for something which comes for free doesn’t make sense. So, we’ll go with the free solution using HFS Explorer with the only downside of installing Java.

This solution to view Time Machine backups on Windows works on all popular versions including Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7 and even on Windows XP.

1. Download Java and set the PATH variable

To use HFS Explorer, you must first download Java and install it on your device. After installing JAVA, you also need to set the Java path properly to let your Windows know where Java is currently installed. To set the path, you need to open Environment Variables under the Advanced Settings of My Computer and create a path variable under User variables.

To confirm whether you have installed and configured Java correctly, type javac in command prompt, and it prints the output as shown in below image.

Type javac in command prompt

2. Connect Hard Drive to Your Windows PC/Laptop

The first step to access Time Machine backup files on Windows is connecting your Mac formatted hard drive to your Windows machine using the USB cable. You might need to use adapters in case your hard drives come with a Thunderbolt cable, which is very rear.

Connect Mac Formatted Hard Disk to Windows using USB

As we already know, Windows will fail to recognise the hard drive as it is an HFS+ formatted device. If you don’t know, your Mac can read file systems of Windows (NTFS/FAT32), but your Windows machine cannot read the file systems of OS X (HFS/HFS+HFSX).

3. Install HFS Explorer

After installing and configuring Java successfully, you need to download and install HFS Explorer to view Time Machine backups on Windows. After installing HFS Explorer, you might see a dialog box on your screen asking you to format the connected external hard drive. You should cancel it carefully and never format the device.

Being said that, open HFS Explorer (as Administrator) by double-clicking the shortcut icon on Desktop. After opening it, select File menu and choose “Load file system from drive“. HFS Explorer is smart enough to detect your connected external drive which is in HFS+ format automatically. If it fails to pick the device, you have to manually choose it from the “Detected Devices” drop-down box.

Select Load file system from device option in File Menu

Once you choose the correct drive, click Load and it will list all the file contents of a hard drive containing Time Machine backups.

4. Restore Time Machine Backup Files to Windows

You need to first understand the file hierarchy of Time Machine backup files to navigate through the desired folder. After listing the files of the hard drive, you will find a folder named “Backups.backupdb” in the root folder.

Inside Backups.backupdb folder, you will see another folder with the name of your MacBook. In my case, it is “Amar’s MacBook Pro”. Open it to see all your recent Time Machine Backups created at different dates. The recent Time Machine backup will be named as “Latest“. However, you can also choose older backups if you wanted to see the older files.

To view your files, open the folder named Latest and navigate to Macintosh HD – Users and open amarilindra (your username) folder. Here is where you can see all your Downloads, Desktop files, Music, Pictures, Documents and more.

navigate to latest time machine backup location

To restore entire Time Machine backup to your Windows, navigate to the backup folder and click on the Export button. Choose the destination folder in your Windows device and HFS Explorer will export and copy Time Machine backup to Windows automatically.

Choose location to extract time machine backup

If you want to export only a few folders or files from Time Machine backup, navigate to the required folder and choose the file(s) and hit the Export button. You selected files and folders might have symbolic links, and HFS Explorer follows the same. Don’t worry, allow HFS Explorer to follow symbolic links and it will take care of copying Time Machine files to Windows. You might see the duplicate files being copied due to symbolic links and you have to delete them later manually.

Select Yes to allow symbolic links

Use Mac Formatted HFS+ Files System External Drives on Windows

This is how you can copy Time Machine backups to Windows PC or laptop without formatting or any data loss. The drawback of this method is, you have to install Java on your device. If for some reasons HFS Explorer didn’t work on your device or if you don’t like installing Java, then HFS+ for Windows by Paragon will be the best choice for you.

Usually, OS X uses the FAT32 file system for regular usage devices like pen drives, memory cards etc. which is supported by Windows but in some individual cases like Time Machine backups it uses HFS+ file system. This is when you need Windows tools which can open HFS+ file systems. Though you can connect, access, view, and export Time Machine backups to Windows using HFS Explorer, you can not still edit and write the files. You have just read-only access.

Another workaround to access Time Machine backup files in Windows is by connecting your hard drive to other MacBook or iMac and copying the data to a portable device with the FAT32 file system which is accessible in Windows. But this is not preferable for everyday tasks as it kills a lot of your time. So the ideal solution to view Time Machine backups on Windows is either using HFS Explorer along with Java runtime or buying HFS+ for Windows by Paragon. If you choose the free solution and install Java on your machine, then you must also consider disabling Java on web browsers for various security benefits.

Back up your Mac with Time Machine

Learn how to create a backup of the files on your Mac.

You can use Time Machine, the built-in backup feature of your Mac, to automatically back up all of your files, including apps, music, photos, email, documents, and system files. When you have a backup, you can restore files from your backup if the original files are ever deleted from your Mac, or the hard disk (or SSD) in your Mac is erased or replaced.

Create a Time Machine backup

To create backups with Time Machine, all you need is an external storage device. After you connect the device and select it as your backup disk, Time Machine automatically makes hourly backups for the past 24 hours, daily backups for the past month, and weekly backups for all previous months. The oldest backups are deleted when your backup disk is full.

Connect an external storage device

Connect one of the following external storage devices, sold separately.

  • External drive connected to your Mac, such as a USB, Thunderbolt, or FireWire drive
  • External drive connected to an AirPort Extreme Base Station (802.11ac model) or AirPort Time Capsule
  • AirPort Time Capsule
  • Mac shared as a Time Machine backup destination
  • Network-attached storage (NAS) device that supports Time Machine over SMB

Select your storage device as the backup disk

When you connect an external drive directly to your Mac, you might be asked if you want to use the drive to back up with Time Machine. Select Encrypt Backup Disk (recommended), then click Use as Backup Disk.

An encrypted backup is accessible only to users with the password. Learn more about keeping your backup disk secure.

Alert: Do you want to use this disk to back up with Time Machine?

If Time Machine doesn’t ask to use your drive, follow these steps to add it manually:

  1. Open Time Machine preferences from the Time Machine Time Machine icon menu in the menu bar. Or choose Apple () menu > System Preferences, then click Time Machine.
  2. Click Select Backup Disk (or Select Disk, or Add or Remove Backup Disk):
    Time Machine preferences window
  3. Select your external drive from the list of available disks. Then select ”Encrypt backups” (recommended) and click Use Disk:

If the disk you selected isn’t formatted as required by Time Machine, you’re prompted to erase the disk first. Click Erase to proceed. This erases all information on the backup disk.

Enjoy the convenience of automatic backups

After you select a backup disk, Time Machine immediately begins making periodic backups—automatically and without further action by you. The first backup may take a long time, depending on how many files you have, but you can continue using your Mac while a backup is underway. Time Machine backs up only the files that changed since the previous backup, so future backups will be faster.

Notification: Backup Complete. Time Machine has finished the first backup to Macintosh HD.

To start a backup manually, choose Back Up Now from the Time Machine Time Machine icon menu in the menu bar. Use the same menu to check the status of a backup or skip a backup in progress.

Learn more

  • Restore your Mac from a backup
  • Other ways to back up and restore files
  • If you back up to multiple disks, you can switch disks before entering Time Machine. Press and hold the Option key, then choose Browse Other Backup Disks from the Time Machine menu.
  • To exclude items from your backup, open Time Machine preferences, click Options, then click the Add (+) button to add an item to be excluded. To stop excluding an item, such as an external hard drive, select the item and click the Remove (–) button.
  • If using Time Machine to back up to a network disk, you can verify those backups to make sure they’re in good condition. Press and hold Option, then choose Verify Backups from the Time Machine menu.
  • In OS X Lion v10.7.3 or later, you can start up from your Time Machine disk, if necessary. Press and hold Option as your Mac starts up. When you see the Startup Manager screen, choose “EFI Boot” as the startup disk.

Author’s Opinion regarding the Time Machine For PC

The Time Machine For PC has very strong features, while considering the security purpose, priority is very high. No VPN or RDP are required for the said purpose. In some cases, emulator also working fine and middleware software also have the important role for smooth functioning. Therefore, author recommended the Time Machine For PC for your personal use and has no issue regarding the installation on PC (Windows and Mac). I hope you also use it without any trouble, if you have any issue, please mentioned in the email, we will provide you answer with proper solutions. Please like and share with other, we did lot of efforts during the collections of the software for your download.

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