Apple’s Time Machine backup software is nice from a simplicity point of view, but it lacks some of the features power users might be accustomed to with typical backup software. By default Time Machine will create incremental backups every one hour, but after 24 hours it starts discarding some of them for the sake of saving space. It keeps hourly backups for the last 24 hours, daily backups for the last month, and weekly backups until the backup disk runs out of room.
There’s one basic thing that Apple doesn’t let you configure through the Time Machine interface: backup frequency. What if you don’t want to do backups every hour? Luckily there is a third-party app available for free that will let you configure how often the backups are performed. It’s called TimeMachineEditor.
Once you download and run TimeMachineEditor you’ll be able to set backups to perform at a certain interval, once a day, once a week, or once a month. It also includes the option to start backups immediately after the disks are mounted, or when the computer wakes up from sleeping.
Since Time Machine uses incremental backups it normally doesn’t take long for it to complete a backup each hour. If, however, you download or change a lot of files that might be a different story. There are a lot of factors that can affect the speed of the backups, and so it could be more beneficial from a performance standpoint to do them less frequently. Luckily TimeMachineEditor will let you do just that.