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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout System 10.5
Time Machine by default does not run when no user is logged in. But that doesn't mean it can't. In fact, Time Machine is perfectly capable of running without a user logged in, but Mac OS X un-mounts all external drives -- including your Time Machine drive -- at logout. If you want Time Machine to continue backing up after you've logged out, it's as simple as setting your system to leave FireWire drives mounted after logout. You can find the instructions on how to do this in this hint.

I've also posted an installer package that will take care of it for you in my blog post on the matter.

[robg adds: I haven't tested this one.]
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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout | 12 comments | Create New Account
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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: DavidShepherdson on Apr 28, '08 08:13:20AM
The link to the earlier hint appears to be broken; it should be http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20031103155828117.

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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: Stormchild on Apr 28, '08 09:11:30AM

"If you want Time Machine to continue backing up after you've logged out, it's as simple as setting your system to leave FireWire drives mounted after logout."

Uh, sure, unless you're not backing up to a FireWire drive, which most people aren't.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: Snowgen on Apr 29, '08 07:12:37AM

Uh, sure, unless you're not backing up to a FireWire drive, which most people aren't.

Well, that's good to know! Can you share the source of your data that tells what percentage of Leopard users use which backup media? I didn't know that data was published anywhere!

In any case, I don't think a hint needs to help "most" people to be a good hint--after all look at all the iPhone hints we have, and we know that most people don't have iPhones.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: ecovelli on Apr 28, '08 10:04:09AM

Previously, I had already set mount while logged out with *censored*tail, so I didn't notice that it doesn't.

Now I have a Time Capsule and it will back up to it, regardless of whether a user is logged in or not.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: TigerKR on Apr 28, '08 06:14:19PM

This will work when typed into Terminal.app

sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/autodiskmount AutomountDisksWithoutUserLogin -bool true

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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: TodW on Apr 29, '08 10:17:39PM
[TodW adds: I haven't tested this either.]

It seems that "robg" has nothing better to do than add totally superfluous commentary. Sheesh, what an ego. As if we readers really care whether or not "robg" has tested the tip or not.

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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: Felix on Apr 30, '08 02:42:25AM

Oh, I don't know...I'd assign more credibility to a Rob Griffiths test of a tip than yours. Or the fact that he hadn't tested/validated a tip would dictate more caution was required in my way of thinking.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: bazilfunk on Apr 30, '08 02:27:00PM

Can someone explain the purpose of time machine running when noone is logged in?



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: TigerKR on Jan 29, '10 12:04:20PM

If you run a Mac OS X machine with no user logged in, it will use fewer resources. Most server applications run as daemons (background applications) so that you do not need to have a user account logged in. This is true for Mac OS X Server applications, and Mac OS X client server applications such as ssh, afp, httpd, etc. So if you log into a work machine from home, or versa visa, your changes will be backed up, even if you're not logged in.

If you put your machine to sleep (passively or actively) this hint will not be helpful.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: ocdinsomniac on May 02, '08 08:28:21AM

Two instances where it's proved useful for me:
1) I create a lot of data on my office machine (or, worse, my boss does — I'm a sysadmin), then log out for the weekend. Anything I did in the hour before I logged out will not be backed up. If something goes wrong over the weekend (and doesn't it always?), that data gets lost.
2) The first backup I made of my staff's computers took a very long time as a full backup had to be created. We therefore let the initial staff backups run overnight, when our staff is normally logged out. This hint allows us to let them log out as normal, rather than having them use Fast User Switching to switch to the Login Window, which is easier and more straightforward for both them and me.

There are other times this could be handy:
1) You create some data on your machine remotely, via SSH or SCP, and want that data to get backed up, but you're not logged into the GUI.
2) Your machine acts as a server of some sort (file server, perhaps) and is rarely logged in to the GUI, but you still want to use Time Machine for backups.

Oh, and just to clarify, this should work for all external drives — firewire, USB, eSATA, what have you.



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: jwsmiths on May 13, '08 06:56:53AM

Does it run even if logged out if you are backing up to an internal SATA drive?



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10.5: Allow Time Machine to run after logout
Authored by: RIOT! i on Nov 19, '08 06:40:34AM

Will this hint work if I am backing up to a time capsule?



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