Poll Preview: To Go Forward, You Must... In this issue, Adam relates the perplexing story of tracking down how to stop a Mac from connecting to remote servers at startup. That was mostly annoying, but more serious system anomalies occur all too often, and they usually come without warning. Are you prepared, especially for situations that would place your important data at risk? The best defense continues to be maintaining regular backups of your data, a topic we've covered extensively (though not recently) in TidBITS. So it's time for a surprise inspection: how old is your most recent backup? Today? Last week? Months ago? Or does your idea of backup entail a large truck making beeping noises? Head over to the TidBITS home page and let us know! (This has been a Public Service Poll of TidBITS Electronic Publishing. After you have replied to the poll, you may return to your regularly scheduled workload, already in progress.) [JLC]
Extract Directly from Time Machine
Normally you use Time Machine to restore lost data in a file like this: within the Time Machine interface, you go back to the time the file was not yet messed up, and you restore it to replace the file you have now.
You can also elect to keep both, but the restored file takes the name and place of the current one. So, if you have made changes since the backup took place that you would like to keep, they are lost, or you have to mess around a bit to merge changes, rename files, and trash the unwanted one.
As an alternative, you can browse the Time Machine backup volume directly in the Finder like any normal disk, navigate through the chronological backup hierarchy, and find the file which contains the lost content.
Once you've found it, you can open it and the current version of the file side-by-side, and copy information from Time Machine's version of the file into the current one, without losing any content you put in it since the backup was made.