Infected email breaking OSX TimeMachine backups

Having been away from home a lot recently, it had been a while since my laptop had been backed up by TimeMachine. After a few attempts though it got a bit annoying as McAfee kept interrupting the process. The problem seemed to be that the backups contained infected emails:

201511324_151187-CapturFilesMcAfee was blocking TM from writing infected emails to the backup drive.

As it turns out, I recalled fixing this once before (although I never blogged about it). So how could it have come unpicked? Looking at my TM backup exclusions, the exclusion that I added was still in place:

201511324_151132-CapturFilesBut my whole mail folder should be more than 8KB!… Then it clicked. I hadn’t done a TM backup since updating to OSX El Capitan.

After clicking the “+” button to add a new rule, I navigated to my mail folder.

  1. In the finder window, hit Cmd + Shift + G.
  2. Enter ~/Library/Mail
  3. Click Go

Aha! There’s now a “V3” folder…

201511324_151100-CapturFiles

I selected it and clicked “Exclude”. Bingo! 5.5Gb sounds more like it.

201511324_151165-CapturFilesAnd like that, TimeMachine works again.

Michael is a Senior Consultant for Xtravirt. If it's got buttons or flashy lights on it then it'll probably be on his radar. When not "mending computers" (it's sometimes easier than explaining "cloud" to relatives), Michael provides essential education, entertainment and trampoline services to his two children.