or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Software › Mac OS X › If you might want to go back to Snow Leopard, beware that Time Machine...
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

If you might want to go back to Snow Leopard, beware that Time Machine...

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
...backups, once written to by Lion, can no longer be recognized by Snow Leopard.

After trying out Lion, I decided I wasn't ready for it yet:

1) My Cisco VPN client for connecting to my office network isn't compatible.

2) Screen Sharing is badly broken (except for, maybe (I didn't try it), Lion-to-Lion sharing) if you want to connect to your Lion system from VNC on a Windows system or from Screen Sharing on a Snow Leopard system.

3) A Perl script for a cron task I had been running didn't work any more.

4) I've decided I'm not quite ready to give up on a couple of old bits of PowerPC software.

If I'd been thinking more cautiously, I would have done a fresh Lion install on a new volume, or an upgrade install on a clone of my SL boot volume. Hindsight, 20/20, yadda yadda,

What I decided to do in order to revert to SL was to do a fresh SL install on a new drive, then when that was ready and updated via Software Update, use the Migration Assistant to restore my system from a Time Machine back up.

Unfortunately, that didn't work. Shortly after installing Lion, the new Lion system, being an upgrade installation, not a fresh installation, decided automatically it was time to back up to the same Time Machine backup I'd been using with SL.

The problem is, once Lion writes to a Time Machine backup, it's not backward compatible with SL. Migration Assistant under SL will no longer recognize the backup.

I had to restore from Time Machine to set-aside folders while running Lion, then reboot my fresh SL installation, and manually copy the old files into place. Since I needed to restore my old ~/Library directory to retrieve my old e-mail (going back in time via Time Machine to the hour before Lion Mail reformatted all of the e-mail files into SL-incompatible form), and since Lion makes ~/Library invisible, that meant using the Finder's "Go" menu to navigate to the Library folder before invoking Time Machine.

One sleepless night, and about 8-10 hours of effort, and I'm finally back in business. I still need to redo a full Time Machine backup from scratch (which won't have any older history) in SL-compatible form.
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
post #2 of 7
Moral of the story: SuperDuper! Everyone should use a multi-tiered backup strategy. Time Machine is great for historical backup but a system clone is good for emergencies and as a system snapshot.
Download BARTsmart BART Widget, the best BART schedule widget for Mac OS X's Dashboard.
Reply
Download BARTsmart BART Widget, the best BART schedule widget for Mac OS X's Dashboard.
Reply
post #3 of 7
I have had to perform a number of roll backs (for want of a better phrase) and I have used Time Machine as the source and I will work with very little manual transferring. For what it's worth here's how I did it;

Make sure you TM back up is up to date.

Run a clean install of Snow Leopard.

When it gets to the "migrate data" section of the installation select your Time Machine disk.

Wait for it to calculate the sizes of the items to be transferred.

Uncheck Applications both in the main list and under users

Proceed with the migration.

Once complete your Mac should boot to the log in or desk top.

You will notice that your dock is flu of question marks.

Update the OS to the latest release using software updates.

Open up your Time Machine back up and browse to the Applications folder.

All the applications that are not greyed out with w circle with a line through it and did not require and installation (i.e. you just dragged them to the Applications folder) can be dragged to the Applications folder on you Mac.

All others will need to be reinstalled

Since you copied the setting over from you Time Machine you will find the Applications will retain their settings and will not ask you for product keys again (where applicable).

This has worked faultlessly for me on each one I have done so far.

I hope this helps

Nic
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nic900 View Post

I have had to perform a number of roll backs (for want of a better phrase) and I have used Time Machine as the source and I will work with very little manual transferring. For what it's worth here's how I did it...

...but the issue here is what happens if the Time Machine backup gets used by Lion before you decide to go back to Snow Leopard. That screws up the format of the backup so Time Machine running under Snow Leopard won't be able to read that backup any more.
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
post #5 of 7
It's a bit of work, but if you wanted to you could manually back up everything the old-fashioned way within Lion, then re-copy it to your Snow Leopard partition.

Having said that, looking at your problems with Lion there's a good chance many of them will be resolved quite quickly, especially if you kindly remind software/hardware vendors of any incompatibilities. Cisco may be a bit slow upgrading compatibility and regarding screen sharing problems Apple has bug request forms you can fill out or you can file a general suggestion.

I can't see why your Perl script doesn't work but it's probably something minor. It was also fairly common knowledge that PowerPC apps were no longer supported and you seem to say you knew that before upgrading so it's not really Lion's fault, nor is it a bug!

So since you decided to take the risk with the upgrade you can either choose to live with the problems for a while or go through a manual backup process. Good luck with that if you decide to do it.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.metcalf View Post

So since you decided to take the risk with the upgrade you can either choose to live with the problems for a while or go through a manual backup process. Good luck with that if you decide to do it.

You can see, if you look back to the OP, that before I even posted here I'd reverted back to Snow Leopard from Lion. I only posted here to warn others of some of the difficulties they might encounter, especially if they were relying on Time Machine as part of a recovery plan.
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
Reply
post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by shetline View Post

You can see, if you look back to the OP, that before I even posted here I'd reverted back to Snow Leopard from Lion. I only posted here to warn others of some of the difficulties they might encounter, especially if they were relying on Time Machine as part of a recovery plan.

Thanks for the warning and glad things are back to normal for you. If there's mission critical stuff and deal breakers certainly Lion is not the right move yet.

I suspected as much to keep the Snow Leopard Time Machine disk very very far away from Lion.

I took the jump though and overwrote my Snow Leopard. My biggest worry was Adobe CS4, iWork'09 and VMWare Fusion. But all seems to be humming along alright. No turning back for me now.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Mac OS X
AppleInsider › Forums › Software › Mac OS X › If you might want to go back to Snow Leopard, beware that Time Machine...