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Time Machine saves hourly backups for the past 24 hours, daily backups for the past month, and weekly backups for everything older than a month until the volume runs out of space. At that point, Time Machine deletes the oldest weekly backup (Time Machine).

I'm at the point where I already have the bash script (rsync) which makes backups every hour. The backups are folders named as "2015-01-01 08", where "08" is the hour.

At some point folders older than 24h need to be deleted. So I'm looking for this magic. I guess it will be kind of rm -R some_pattern. How would such a pattern look like?

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You can use a 1-line command if running Linux (YMMV on OS X):

find /path/to/your/backups/ -type d -mtime +1 -exec rm -r "{}" \;

Note that this assumes your directories are not modified after creation.

You can omit the -exec rm -r "{}" \; part if you only want to output directory names to test the command.

  • To avoid that assumption, I would like to check the date from the name of the folder. – oqrxke Feb 2 '15 at 1:32
  • How to iterate over all the folders? – oqrxke Feb 2 '15 at 1:36

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