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Copies at any time and of all the content The snapshots of our Mac, as long as we are running it from an APFS partition , they are an excellent resource to keep a backup copy of our information. There is, however, an important detail to take into account: its purgeable nature.
Given the size of such a snapshot, the system considers these copies to be purgeable. This means that if at any point the Mac runs out of available space it will delete those copies . This is by no means an impediment to its use, since all we have to do is move the copy to an external storage, for example, and voila, but it is something to keep in mind.
Creating a backup with this system is really easy. We will simply open the terminal and write “tmutil localsnapshot” , without the quotes. After pressing enter we will be informed that the copy has already been created, that fast.
Accessing the created copies is also very simple. We will do it like this:
We open Spotlight by pressing Command (⌘) + Spacebar or by clicking on the small magnifying glass of the top right. We are looking for Disk Utility . We press Enter. In the menu Display we activate Show APFS snapshots . We select, in the sidebar left, the unit from which we want to see snapshots.
Once we get here we will see that, at the bottom of the window of the Disk Utility displays a list of all snapshots . For each of them we have several options.
First of all, let us note that the system collects the creation date as well as its size, in this case 31 GB. Once the snapshot we are interested in is selected, we can use the “-” symbol at the bottom of the list to delete it. We can also touch the button in the form of three dots to rename it, mount it or show it in the Finder .
It is precisely this last option that we will use to browse the content of the copy. The snapshot maintains the content of the disk as it was at the time it was made, so if after taking it we have, for example, deleted a file, we will see that it is still in the snapshot. This allows us to drag it back to the desktop, for example, to recover it .
These snapshots even allow us a complete restoration from the Mac using the recovery partition. From there, after selecting Restore from a Time Machine copy , we can choose one of the snapshots and then the one from a specific date to start the restoration.
True, it may be easier to use Time Machine, which in fact also saves local snapshots on our Mac, but being able to create a screenshot of the Mac at a certain moment can be very interesting. One more way to make sure that if something happens, we can go back.