Backing up old macbook pro on WD Passport
So we have this macbook pro from like 2010. It's come to be very very slow, probably due to all the absolute junk on it, so what I want to do is back everything up onto this hard drive and then format the compter back to factory, and recover a few files we need for work etc. I just want to check here before I do anything stupid. I backed up the laptop around a few months ago, and we've added new files onto it so it needs another backup. It's set up all on time machine but I can't figure out for the life of me how to update the backup... Is it automatic or what? I don't know how to check if it's all up to date with every file in it.
Also, after it's all backed up, is it safe if I just go ahead and completely format the mac? Will the backups still be available to access and recover files from? I know it sounds like such a stupid question but there are a lot of precious and sentimental things on this computer so I don't want to risk anything.
Thank you so much in advance
Read responses in forums.macrumors.com