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I have Time Machine set up on a FireWire 800 external drive on my MacBook Pro. I have another USB external drive (formated NTFS with Paragon drivers so that I can store files bigger than 4 GB and access them from Windows) with iMovie media etc and TM has been backing that up successfully (I can see the files in TM disk).

Recently I ran out of my internal SDD space and moved iPhoto Library to that external USB drive. Then I got fed up with constantly connecting the USB cable and decided to swap HDD and optical drive (using a solution similar to OptiBay). Again, everything is working fine.

The Problem is that I discovered that Time Machine has not made backups of the Media disk in a while (backups don't contain the iPhoto Library). Turns out that TM has that disk in the exclude list for some reason.

No matter what I try, TM keeps adding the Media disk back to the exclude list every time I open the Options... from TM prefs.

Some details:

Mac OS X 10.7.3

The disk in question is split in two partitions:
  Media disk: NTFS, 400 GB with 290 GB used
              I can remove it from exclude list, but it reappears
  Stuff disk: FAT32 - never needed to be backed up nor ever has been
              grayed out in exclude list, can't even remove
TM disk free: ~ 500 GB
Latest backup of Media seems to be March 2, 2012 (TM browser indicates),
  which was prior to moving iPhoto Library

BTW, now that the disk is internal anyhow, I can reformat the NTFS partition to HFS+ if that solves the problem. But TM did not have any problems with NTFS in the past. Why now?

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1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Why it was possible is strange in the first place. The change may caused by a decision of Apple, packed in an update.

Reformat the NTFS partition to HFS+, will include your drive in Time Machine.

Note: also FAT formatted drives will not be backed up by Time Machine.

Update: Time Machine offers to use an NTFS volume if a write-enabled driver for NTFS is installed before a physical disk with NTFS is introduced to OS X. [source: Enabling Time Machine for a USB HDD with NTFS

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This is exactly what I ended up doing (forgot to update this question). Before reformat, I used TM browser to delete all backups of the previous Media to free up disk space. Now backups have been running OK for a while. –  Laas May 6 '12 at 18:03
    
Backup to NTFS … Restore from NTFS. Not only NTFS; with ZEVO, Time Machine can back up to ZFS. tmutil is present in all released builds of Lion, but the man page was not published by Apple until 10.7.4. –  Graham Perrin Jul 23 '12 at 4:40
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