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Excluding the Virtual Machines folder from being backed up by Time Machine (1014046)

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  • Time Machine backup disk is being filled quickly
  • You cannot restore virtual machine from Time Machine backup
  • Virtual machines are experiencing performance issues


VMware does not recommend backing up your virtual machine using Time Machine. When Time Machine attempts to backup a virtual machine while it is running, it does not create a proper backup. The backup process may also result in reduced performance of the virtual machine. VMware recommends that you exclude your virtual machines from Time Machine backup and instead create a manual backup of the virtual machine. For more information, see Best practices for virtual machine backup (programs and data) in VMware Fusion (1013628).

To exclude the Virtual Machines folder from being backed up by Time Machine:

  1. From the Mac's menu bar, click Apple Menu > System Preferences.
  2. Click Time Machine.
  3. Click Option.
  4. Click + to add an exception.

    For the folder with the virtual machines you have created:
  5. Navigate to the directory [Macintosh HD]/Users/<your username>/Documents/.
  6. Select the Virtual Machines folder, then click Exclude.

    Note: If you have chosen to save your virtual machines in a different location, exclude that folder instead. To determine where your virtual machine is saved, see Locating the virtual machine bundle in VMware Fusion (1007599).

    If you use your Boot Camp partition in Fusion:
  7. Navigate to the directory [Macintosh HD]/Users/<your username>/Library/Application Support/VMware Fusion/Virtual Machines/.
  8. Select the Boot Camp folder, then click Exclude.


misconfigured-application  backup

See Also

Update History

11/22/2010 - Added link to find VMs not in default location. 04/30/2010 - Added details about excluding Boot Camp metadata. 09/4/2013 - Added Fusion 6.x information. 09/03/2014: Updated for Fusion 7.x

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  • 39 Ratings