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I've received this message on Google Drive - The folder location is controlled by macOS - and Local cache files have now been moved with an update.

I use Local cache files to backup synced on an external drive, but I now have got a message saying it has been moved to my laptop. Can someone tell me how I can have all my synced files back to my external hard drive with this new update? (Photo attached)enter image description here

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Your files are gone.

(Unless you have a Time Machine backup)

You should never use “local cache” as a backup. Local cache is a temporary storage (cache) of your files so that it can speed up retrieval of files or give you offline access when there is no Internet connectivity.

At minimum, you should be using Time Machine, but you should adhere to the old adage that “a file isn’t backed up unless it’s in three places.”

Syncing files to….

In your case it’s an external drive; it could be a network folder or a cloud drive. Syncing files is not backing up as you’ve found. With a backup, once a change is made, it immediately gets propagated everywhere you sync too. With a backup like Time Machine, when a change is made, it is copied to the backup drive and indexed by date. In other words, you get a rudimentary versioning. If you need to go back to a version of document you had last week, Time Machine allows you to do this.

Recovery software

You can try a tool like Disk Drill to attempt to recover your files. If your external drive is an a traditional spinning drive, your chances are fair to good. If the drive on your computer(s) are SSDs, then the odds are very, very small you’ll recover them from there.

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