New iMac, can't download some files from iCloud Documents folder

Discussion in 'macOS Mojave (10.14)' started by Ubele, Aug 2, 2019.

  1. Ubele macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    #1
    I recently got a refurbished 2109 27" iMac (I love it!) and decided to do a fresh installation of everything, rather than migrate from my 2012 i7 Mac mini. For backups, I use a combination of iCloud, Time Machine, and Carbon Copy Cloner. Because I figured that copying the contents of my large Documents folder from an external SSD clone of my mini would be faster than downloading the files from iCloud, I opted not to turn on iCloud until my iMac was fully set up.

    When I turned on iCloud, I learned that my Documents folder was on my local drive and therefore presumably not synced to iCloud. So I dragged Documents to iCloud Drive in Finder, and suddenly everything had the cloud-with-the-down-arrow icon next to it. Apparently, I needed to download everything to maintain synchronization. I started clicking on the cloud icons at top-level folders, and the contents were downloading fine, as indicated by the circle with the progress indicator, after which the cloud icon disappeared.

    At some point, though, this stopped working. For the remaining folders or individual files, clicking on the cloud icon does nothing. If I double-click on a document to open it, though, the document downloads. If I create a new document, it automatically uploads to iCloud, so the connection is still there. I don't want to have to open all of my remaining documents just to download local copies. I have a 2TB Fusion drive, of which I've used 750GB, so it's not a space issue. The reason I want local copies is to have them on my CCC bootable clone.

    Any ideas? For whatever it's worth, I gave my i7 Mac mini to my wife as a replacement for her slower 2012 i5 mini, and I performed the same type of fresh installation. I was able to download all of her Documents folders and files from iCloud with no problem, although she has far fewer files than I do.
     
  2. 960design macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Location:
    Destin, FL
    #2
    I have 25GB of cloud source code that gets moved everytime I get a new computer. It normally takes 24 hours for everything to copy over. I setup the new computer, update it to latest MacOS, and leave it plugged in overnight at work. When I return the next day most everything is copied over, the rest have little cloud icons indicating that they will come over soon. I can click a cloud icon and download it immediately if the file is needed.

    Hope that helps.
     
  3. Ubele thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    #3
    Thanks, 960design, but that's exactly what should be happening but isn't -- or, rather, what was happening but then stopped. I turned on iCloud a week ago, and most of my files downloaded over the next few hours. (I have about 170GB of files in iCloud, which includes a lot of RAW images). Now, clicking on a cloud icon does nothing, nor does right-clicking and selecting Download Now. However, if I double-click on a file icon itself, the file downloads and either opens in the associated app or, in the case of files with no associated app, tells me it can't find an app with which to open the file. The file downloads, though. If worse comes to worst, I'll just double-click on the icons for the remaining undownloaded files. What's odd is that, yesterday, after I did this for three or four files in one folder, the remaining files in that folder and its subfolders downloaded automatically. Unfortunately, that didn't continue happening with the other folders.
     
  4. 960design macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Location:
    Destin, FL
    #4
    Seeing you did a fresh install, your computer could be allocating greater resources to indexing.
    Search for spotlight process within Activity Monitor. If it is eating up a large portion of your CPU time then your Mac has decided indexing the local data is priority. Just let it do its thing, it will soon sort everything out.

    If you see bird process eating up your CPU/CPU time then iCloud is doing its thing as fast as it can. If 24 hours has elapsed and you are sure your internet connection is not wonky, you could stop the bird process. It will restart automatically and maybe that will clear a hung iCloud file. To be fair, bird is fairly sophisticated and understands bandwidth on both sides of the line, plus current CPU demand and weighs this and many other factors to determine the optimal crossload of iCloud data files. It even handles hung files like a champ. 170GB of iCloud data is fairly large and will take a very fast internet connection and a little patience.
     
  5. Ubele thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    #5
    I'd never heard of the bird process before, so I learned something--thanks. In my Activity Monitor, bird comes and goes, using between 0.0% and 2.0% of the CPU, so it doesn't seem to be stuck. The spotlight process isn't running at all. In fact, the CPU is running about 95% idle. Is signing out of iCloud and signing back in worth a try, or would that make it re-download everything?
     
  6. Ubele thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    #6
    Update: I just rebooted my iMac, and iCloud downloads have resumed. I've been working with computers since 1983, and I still sometimes forget to take the advice I give to other people: "When in doubt, reboot."
     

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5 August 2, 2019