Time Machine drive corrupted, now what?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by 50voltphantom, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. macrumors regular


    Jun 23, 2011
    My daughter managed to corrupt my Time Machine backup drive by flicking the power strip switch it and my Mac were connected to on and off and I currently have Disk Utility repairing the disc. What do I do now? Here's what I was thinking:

    1. Run disc utility on my Mac's HD and verify it.
    2. Verify my backup drive to make sure the repair worked.

    What should I do next? Would it be a good idea to erase my backup drive and start a Time Machine backup from scratch so that I don't have any nasty surprises the next time I restore from Time Machine?

    Any input is greatly appreciated.

  2. macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012

    your back up drive works well, the procedure you suggests in your post sounds good to me.But things can become tricky if your backup are not working correctly, because that can involve recovery software and so on (as DiskWarrior), if the info is very important to you.

    Hope the damage is not extensive and you can get your equipment running smoothly really soon....

  3. macs4nw, Jan 23, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013

    macrumors 68030


    I'm no expert on this, but I'll give it a try.

    From your signature line I see you're running ML; for starters, that's a good thing because Mountain Lion allows for Multiple Back-ups allowing you to have back-ups of all your files, on multiple hard drives, in multiple locations. Your Time Machine takes 'snapshots' of all the changes that have occurred on your computer, and remembers which 'Time Capsule' needs which updates, so that a secondary TC which you might have at work or any other location, will get all the missed changes, that have happened since it was last connected, the moment you plug in that drive.

    Since you're unsure if your TC is corrupted, I would not use that drive for now, but do a brand new back-up on a different (or new) TM compatible HDD, so that you'll still have that old TC if something were to go wrong. Once you have completed this 'new' back-up, and are satisfied that everything is cool, you can then erase the original TC, and do a new back-up to that drive as well using 'Multiple Back-ups', leaving you now with two back-ups for extra peace of mind. Here's some info on ML multiple back-ups: http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_backup_time_machine_multiple_locations.
    Google it; there's a ton more info on it out there.

    There is a small chance the HDD in your computer could also have become corrupted, however that is much less likely, but if that turns out to be the case, I would talk to Applecare, or you may need a data recovery expert. They can do amazing things.

    Without knowing how old your daughter is, I'd say keep her away from that power strip switch, and if you haven't already done this, invest in a UPS; they can be had for as little as $49-$79, and can 'save the day' during a power outage. Cheers.
  4. macrumors 6502a


    Dec 2, 2012
    When will people learn that TM cannot be trusted. I was never able to restore a TM image without some kind of problem. So now I just use CCC instead.:D
  5. macrumors 68030


    I have heard a lot of good things about Carbon Copy Cloner, including that you can create bootable back-up copies, but I have no first-hand experience with it. Must try it out some day.
  6. SandboxGeneral, Jan 24, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2013



    Staff Member

    Sep 8, 2010
    Detroit, Michigan
    I actually use a PC DOS-based program called Spinrite as a maintenance utility and data recovery utility on all my HDD's. You have to have an IBM-PC in order to use it though. You take the HDD out of the Mac and connect it to the IBM-PC and run the program. Below is my old MBP HDD in a Dell PC with Spinrite working on it.



    I wouldn't erase or format the drive just yet. If you can run Spinrite, it can very easily repair any corrupt sectors and make the drive and data useable again. If you do or already have erased the drive, it's still a good idea to run this program because a bad sector is a bad sector and can cause problem later on. It's better to correct it if possible.

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