Time Machine - Frequently Asked Questions

28.  Where do I find what I want to restore?

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Below are some common data files that folks often want to restore, and where to find them.

For instructions on how to restore what you want, see question #15.

If you don't know how to read and/or "navigate" to files via the notation below, see Troubleshooting item #A7 (many won't show up in a Spotlight or Finder search).

If you want to restore things from a user account that's protected by the original FileVault (not File Vault 2 on Lion), see question #25.

ADDRESS BOOK (prior to Mountain Lion)          

  1. See the link to Contacts/Address Book in question #15.

  2. <home folder>/Library/Application Support/AddressBook



BACKUP PLANS (Apple's Backup app, formerly part of MobileMe)

  1. <home folder>/Application Support/Backup (restore whole folder)

  2. <home folder>/Backup (restore whole folder)

CALENDARS (Mountain Lion, previously iCal)    

  1. <home folder>/Library/Calendars (restore whole folder)

CONTACTS (Mountain Lion; previously AddressBook)          

  1. See the link to Contacts/Address Book in question #15.

  2. <home folder>/Library/Application Support/AddressBook


DOCUMENTS & DATA in iCloud  Made with TextEdit, Preview, Pages, Numbers, etc.             

  1. See the link to Documents & Data in iCloud in question #15.



  1. <home folder>/Documents/Microsoft user data



  2. <home folder>/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/<profile name>/bookmarks.html 

  3. Cookies                

  4. <home folder>/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/<profile name>/cookies.sqlite



  1. /System/Library/Fonts

  2. /Library/Library/Fonts

  3. <home folder>/Library/Fonts


iCAL CALENDARS  including ToDos      

  1. <home folder>/Library/Calendars (restore whole folder)


iPHONE, iPOD sync backups     

  1. <home folder>/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup



  1. See the link to iPhoto in question #15.

  2. <home folder>/Pictures/iPhoto Library (unless it's been moved).



  1. <home folder>/Music/iTunes (unless it's been moved).


iWEB source                   

  1. <home folder>/Application Support/iWeb/Domain.sites2



    System and/or FileVault Keychains       

  1. /Library/Keychains (restore whole folder)

    User Keychains           

  1. <home folder>/Library/Keychains (restore whole folder)


    Accounts, Mailbox rules, passwords, etc. 

       Mountain Lion: <home folder>/Library/Containers/com.apple/mail/Data


       Lion and earlier: <home folder>/Library/Preferences/com.apple.Mail.plist

    Mailboxes & Messages (including Notes on Snow Leopard and earlier)                      

  1. See the link to Apple Mail in question #15.

  2. <home folder>/Library/Mail


  1. Lion and later:

  2. Not Available 

  3. Snow Leopard and earlier:

  4. Use Apple Mail (above).



  2. <home folder>/Library/Safari/bookmarks.plist   

  3. Cookies                

  4. <home folder>/Library/Cookies

  5. History                 

  6. <home folder>/Library/Safari/History.plist



  1. <home folder>/Library/StickiesDatabase

TO  DOs:

  1. ToDos are stored in your Calendars.  See iCal, Calendars above.



    System-wide (available to all users)                

  1. /Library/Widgets

    Individual Users          

  1. <home folder>/Library/Widgets




Data for other applications is often in a file or folder with the name of the app or maker in

  1. <home folder>/Library or

  2. <home folder/Library/Application Support

If you can't find what you're looking for, check the Help for the app in question;  or search, browse, or post a question in the appropriate Apple Discussions forum for help.