Need URGENT help! Need to save files

Discussion in 'macOS' started by wahit, May 21, 2010.

  1. wahit macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #1
    Hello people!

    I really need help here. I don't know what else to do....
    Let me keep this simple and write what is the problem and what I've done so far:


    My iMac 2.4Ghz C2D with Leopard 10.5.8 started to act real slow. This started last week. Yesterday it froze! After some reboots all the system turned to be very, very slow and startup loads usually took over 5 minutes. Yeah, that's right...

    I thought that with a clean install all things would turn out ok, but this is where the problem starts. I needed to backup all my data. I connected an external USB drive to my iMac and started the backup. Oh boy! It takes ages and some files don't even copy!!! An error appears!!!! And yes, I've tried to connect that external drive to other computers and it works fine. The problem is somewhere inside the iMac.

    You can't imagine how my heart started pumping, since I have here date that is super important for me. I can't risk myself to lose this.

    I decided to run Disk Utility through the OSX DVD, and repaired disk and permissions. I rebooted the system on Safe Mode and the problem remains.

    Everything is slow, but most important I can't seem to backup my data.

    On some reboots it also appeared the grey folder blinking. What is this? But generally the system opens, but everything is very slow. I jut need to save my data.


    What else can I do?

    I would be eternally grateful to the one that helps me with this. I can see my life flashing though my eyes!

    Thank you for your attention.

    Cheers
     
  2. dundonald macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2007
    Location:
    doon the walk
    #2
    Going by your signature you have a bunch of computers.

    Have you tried target disk mode? If it mounts you could probably go and get the files you need. Grab the important one's first, especially if your hard drive is on its way out.

    Do you have Diskwarrior?
     
  3. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    #3
    Are you running an automated backup or copying manually. I would backup manually as you can isolate the files that are not being copied but at least get the rest moved over.

    You can then try opening the files that will not copy and do a save as to save the files elsewhere. If they will not open then they are likely corrupted and a data recovery app would stand a poor chance recovering them.
     
  4. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #4

    I've tried target disk mode. The disks mount, yet the problem remains. I can't seem to copy all the files. At somewhere 33% the transfer stops (freezes).

    I've tried Diskwarrior was well. It repaired the disk, but when I rebooted.... oh boy! It doesn't even reboot now! I just get the grey apple logo for a long, long time and nothing happens.



    I'm copying manually. It's pretty hard to isolate files, since there are over 30.000!!!! Over 20.000 are pictures......



    Nothing is working so far. What can I do more? :confused:
     
  5. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    #5
    With my music library I always have one or two songs that will not copy. I put the main folder in detail view and copy a full page at a time. Once copied I move that page of folders to another folder labeled as transferred or delete if my intention is to wipe the drive.

    If my copy get halted by a bad file. I will delete the folders of that failed page of transfers that managed to copy over. Then from the source page just select half and copy and just keep narrowing down by halves until I find the offending folder.

    On the new drive I will then create a new folder with the label of the offending folder. I then open the offending folder and try copying half of its contents and continue this progression until I find the faulty file or files.

    It is time consuming but this is the only manual method I found that works.

    You could also try carbon copy cloner which I think will just skip the faulty files and generate an error log letting you know what could not be copied. I have not tried this approach as I have not done such a copy for quite a while as I keep backups and have centralized my data on a home server.
     
  6. Hal Itosis macrumors 6502a

    Hal Itosis

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #6
    I don't have any idea for the startup issues, but I have to say that —as far as managing the backup of thousands of files goes —trying to deal with that task via drag-n-drop (even when it works without error) —is really not the way to go. You should use a utility (and I highly recommend ChronoSync), and let it maintain your "folder-based" backups. It might just succeed where Finder fails, or... at least it will copy all it can and then report about the items which didn't make it.

    Seriously: if backup matters, then get a proper tool.
     
  7. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #7
    Hello again! Now in panic....

    I've tried everything:

    - Disk Utility > repairs
    - Mac to Mac connection through FW cable (target disk mode)
    - Diskwarrior
    - SuperDuper


    Nothing works! I still can't copy all my files, and when I try to copy a file that doesn't work all the transfers stop. I could try to copy file by file, but there are over 30.000 files I need! It would take ages to copy one by one....

    What else can I do? Or is this a lost quest? :confused: :confused:


    Thanks
     
  8. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #8
    download/purchase Data Rescue - do not use your hard drive until you get it.

    :)
     
  9. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #9
    Are you talking about this Data Rescue?

    Do you really think it will work?
     
  10. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #10
    thats it mate :)

    i really have no idea if it will work, as i dont know how "gone" (i.e. damaged) the hard drive is. generally programs such as this can recover at least SOME of your data. turning it on will generally only damage it more :(
     
  11. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #11
    Ok... Should I run Data Rescue as a bootable DVD or should I install it on my iMac and run it through there? I must remind you that my iMac is extremely slow because of the disk issues.

    :confused:
     
  12. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #12
    if it can be used as a bootable DVD- do that! if not, then do NOT attempt to boot from the hdd again, as i said, using it will damage the hdd further.
     
  13. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #13
    Ok, thank you! I'll let you know how it turned out later.

    Cheers! :)
     
  14. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #14
    ok please do :) dont be hesitant to ask!
     
  15. Hal Itosis macrumors 6502a

    Hal Itosis

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #15
    Most likely your disk has bad blocks (physical damage). While Data Rescue will probably work, so would ChronoSync or —for that matter —basic command line tools like ditto. Unlike Finder, those types of copy utilities will not give up when an i/o error happens... they'll keep trying and/or skip the problem file areas and proceed to copy what it can. I had this happen at least once. I used ditto and it took 28 hours to finish copying. Bad blocks are a b!tch.
     
  16. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #16
    28 hours? Holy cannoli!!!!!!

    So, when I start my iMac with Disk Repair should I just leave the computer until everything stops for itself? Even when it looks like the computer froze?

    I'm planning on saving everything to an external USB hard drive. if the computer takes that much time to save all the data, is it safe for the external disk? I mean, it will get hot for a long time. Am I right?

    Cheers!
     
  17. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #17
    Actually, since you already have it, DiskWarrior is wonderful for this. No, not for fixing the drive, but for copying the data off.

    If you boot from the DiskWarrior CD, run it's repair function, but instead of replacing the directory, click the nice "Preview" button on the summary page, it will launch the DiskWarrior Preview application, which gives you a two-pane view, where you can have the drive you're recovering on one side and the drive you're copying to on the other, and copy between then. The nice thing is that it will skip over files it can't access, instead of erroring out like the Finder would. It will also then let you see a log of which files it couldn't copy.

    jW
     
  18. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #18
    and what if the heads are damaging the platter? that software wont help then lol

    correct - even if it looks frozen, just leave it! the external USB CANNOT be damaged at all :)

    i didnt know DW could do this! thanks for that :D
     
  19. wahit thread starter macrumors member

    wahit

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Location:
    Portugal
    #19
    Ahmmm.... I ran DiskWarrior from the DVD yet there's nothing about repair anywhere. I mean, when I open the software I have three top options:

    - DIRECTORY
    - FILES
    - HARDWARE


    - When I click DIRECTORY the only option I have is to Rebuild the Directory.
    - When I click FILES I have two options, 'Repair Disk Permissions' and 'Check All Files & Folders', yet 'Repair Disk Permissions' isn't available (light grey, impossible to click).
    - Finally, when I click HARDWARE, I have two options as well. Manual Diagnostics, where I can test the device, and Automatic Diagnostics, and here once again I can't touch anything. Everything is in light grey.


    What do I need to do?
     
  20. Hal Itosis macrumors 6502a

    Hal Itosis

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #20
    That's the one. Let the rebuild run (with bad blocks, step 5 will take some time... and you should see small error messages inside the window: "Speed reduced by disk malfunction").

    Eventually, you get a window with these buttons:

    [ Details ] [ Preview ] (Cancel) (Replace)​

    Click on Preview. The following dialog message should appear:

    The original disk and the preview disk now
    appear on the desktop. Both disks are locked
    to prevent alteration during preview.

    The Finder will be brought to the front so that you may view
    the disks. When finished, please return to DiskWarrior and click
    either "Replace" or "Cancel". Please do not remove either disk
    from the desktop


    (Cancel) (Continue)


    DiskWarrior will mount a "disk" (of the same name) which contains the cleaned-up version of the filesystem that DW would otherwise have used to overwrite the original (had you clicked on Replace instead of Preview).

    Not sure what Mal meant by a "two-pane view" in a Preview application. The current DW (4.2) seems to just activate Finder... and from there you could copy from the preview filesystem (the disk with the magnifying-glass icon) to your external backup.

    Or so i've heard (from other sources as well).
     
  21. fluffyx macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    #21
    In some cases DiskWarrior or Data Rescue can scavenge files from a failing hard drive, but they're not designed for this.

    Your drive has a mechanical failure that can easily get worse as more software "recovery" attempts are performed on it.

    Since you're still able to read files from the drive, you may be able to avoid paying for professional data recovery, but be very ginger. The drive might fail even worse at any point during this process, and this would mean that professional data recovery would cost more that it would if you had it done now.

    Best of luck.
     

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