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Why Time Machine on a Mac is a GOOD THING and a suggested option for Windows people (like me)


Lightroom enthusiast (but still learning)
Premium Classic Member
Premium Cloud Member
Nov 16, 2015
California, USA
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Classic 8.0
Operating System
Windows 10
I use Retrospect Professional Retrospect: Backup Software for Small Businesses, $119 for Desktop. There is also a $40 Personal version. I just discovered how valuable is Retrospect's ability to back up multiple versions of a file, in this case all my various .lrcat files. When I first got Lightroom, I didn't know very much about it, so I created a separate catalog for each event or subject, probably 20+ in all. Knowing what I do now, I should have been using collections. The issue is that most of these one-off catalogs have been deleted. Ooops! Years of work gone??? Almost.

Using Retrospect, I was able to locate all the backed up versions of all these catalogs. I do my backups by year, so I had to search various datasets by year, and found these one-off catalogs going back to 2014, when I first started using Lightroom 4. Using a simple "mirror image" backup tool like Macrium Reflect, Macrium Software | Macrium Reflect Free, all these catalogs would have disappeared from the backup drive. Now I can simply restore all these old catalog files, import them, and create collections as needed.

For Mac users, life is good, very good, as long as you are diligent about using Time Machine and have enough space for backups. Time Machine automatically keeps old versions of files and files you have deleted from your system. (I never thought I would have MacOS X envy. :eek:)

For Windows users, Retrospect Personal or Desktop may be a great investment that can save you a lot of time when you need to recover old files or old versions of a file. Among other features Retrospect allow backups to multiple "data sets" and backups can be scripted and scheduled, so you can get most of the benefits that Time Machine gives Mac users.

Just saying ...

Phil Burton


Senior Member
Jan 13, 2017
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
I have a 2TB EHD dedicated to Time Machine. Saved me a few times.
Jan 20, 2018
Lightroom Experience
Lightroom Version
Cloud Service
Thanks for this Phil. I moved from Mac to Windows 10 earlier this year and Time Machine is the only thing I really miss. TM did save me on at least two occasions and I will certainly check Retrospect out.