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I'm not sure what the default behavior is, but I'm confident I did not receive any "backup failed, device is full" error message from time machine before Catalina. I have a 500G SSD set up with time machine. The contents of my mac hard drive amount to some 300G. Time machine failed to complete the backup today because it has only 25.8G left and it needs 35G. Isn't it supposed to start deleting the older backups? I can't see an option for deleting the old stuff manually anyway, but I would much rather it did this automatically. How do I make it start deleting from the oldest stuff automatically? (OS version: 10.15.5)

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  • I get those too, from time to time. I ignore them and the next time I look at Time Machine status a backup was done. Granted the message is confusing as it should be saying something like, "Time Machine can't proceed with backups until it removes older data. 35GB is needed and only 26GB is available. Backup will proceed once the old data has been removed" Jun 27 '20 at 18:44
  • @SteveChambers this time it absolutely refuses to back anything up Jun 27 '20 at 20:10

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