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Don't convert your Time Machine volume from HFS+ to APFS

Time Machine can work with APFS volumes, but the shape looks like this:

  • Time Machine can archive files from both HFS+ and APFS volumes.
  • Time Machine volumes must be HFS+.
  • You can use Disk Utility to upgrade a Time Machine HFS+ volume to APFS without a warning. You’d think Disk Utility would detect the Time Machine backup and stop you, but it doesn’t.
  • Once upgraded to APFS, the Time Machine backup archive is mostly useless, even though files aren’t destroyed.
The archive becomes useless, because APFS doesn’t support hard links. These are a special kind of alias. A soft link is a pointer to a destination file that looks to the operating system like a pointer. A hard link looks to the operating system like an actual file, even though it’s just a pointer. This allows a single copy of a file to be in a filesystem, but have many pointers that reference it, and they can be manipulated and copied as if they exist in multiple places.

 

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I had my doubts about TM and APFS. The doubts were right but my reasons were wrong.

As Dad used to say: "When in doubt trust your gut."
 

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As Dad used to say: "When in doubt trust your gut."

Man, and here I am thinking I was the only one that goes along and believes in that adage. ;)


And I was just reading how Mike Bombich is now advising to NOT use Carbon Copy Cloner.app with any APFS formatted drive and also found there's a bug when working with sparse images with APFS formatted drives.

I believe it was them that reported the problems to Apple in the firs place.
 
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