time machine recovery... help!

Discussion in 'macOS' started by gorilly, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. gorilly macrumors member

    May 30, 2008
    London, UK

    I had a really bad run of luck with my macbook and time machine and i was wondering if someone could help!

    Basically i had to format my macbook - it needed a new hard drive and OSX had a few issues etc.

    Before i did this i ran a time machine backup and it was all working well etc. Fitted the new drive into the macbook installed everything and all was good, zero'd out my old drive and sold it.

    After a few months i decided to restore the time machine backup to get my photos and music back but the partition had corrupted on the USB drive.

    I formatted the drive again but obviously it was blank. Annoyingly i own get databack for NTFS and FAT 32.

    I bought a bit of software called stellar from here http://www.stellarinfo.com/mac-data-recovery.htm and ran it, it took ages and said it found data and i selected to restore it to another usb drive, thing is its just a bunch of files i cant read.

    Does anyone know of a good data recovery program for recovering HFS partitions or can help me out with this?

  2. gorilly thread starter macrumors member

    May 30, 2008
    London, UK
    Hi Yea the backup was working fine, i had used it int he past i knew it worked, but the partition on the actual drive messed up!

    As far as i understand time machine just creates a single database file on the time machine drive and partitions it in a strange way?
  3. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    Epic fail there. Sounds like you tried your only shot at recovery and failed. No real options except maybe a $$$$ data recovery service.
  4. Longdrive macrumors member

    Dec 6, 2011
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
  5. StevenMeyer macrumors member


    Dec 17, 2011
    New York... Where Else?
    Yes.. i know, i use both. There are better free recovery tools for windows imo.
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Here is one more post (of many I see here on MacRumors.com) demonstrating why Time Machine is a poor backup system.

    Yes, TM looks so easy to use -- just "flick the big switch", attach a drive, and you don't have to do anything more. TM creates the illusion that "backing up is thoughtless". It's getting your data back that can become problematical.

    Once again, we have a user who -- in a "moment of extreme need" -- reaches for a TM backup and finds..... that he can't "get to it". If you can't access the backup, what good is it?

    To the original poster:
    If you had chosen to use CarbonCopyCloner instead, and created a bootable clone on an external drive, chances are you wouldn't be having the problems you're having today.

    CCC creates a BOOTABLE BACKUP, in POFF (plain old finder format). The files are instantly visible and accessible -- an exact "dupe" of your source drive. Just connect your backup and it will mount on the desktop. You can see everything that's there, it will look just like your source drive looked the last time you backed up. If it's a single file you need, just copy it over (same for a group of files or folders). Or, if your source drive is kaput, just boot up from your CCC backup clone, and "re-clone" the backup to your source drive, or to a brand-new replacement drive. You will be up and running in the time it takes to copy over the files.

    CCC is one of the best pieces of software available for the Mac, and it's free.

    I also recommend having something like this in your toolbox or drawer:
    (many items shown, they all work the same, just pick one you like that's cheap)
    You can boot from these, same as you would from an external drive. A VERY useful piece of hardware to have around, and did I mention they were CHEAP, too?
  7. niksimpsons macrumors member


    May 12, 2011
    I am really unable to understand feasibility of advertising CCC here, Mr. Fishrrman!
    Gorilly has already taken backup using TM and now problem is about recovering that data from back not about taking backup. He is looking for recovery solution not for advise regarding backup! You are just trying to move discussion in opposite direction. He actually do need this advice -

    I guess it is not right time to say what had gone wrong. We have to suggest some solution to the best of your knowledge that more important than advertising. Sorry if you think I am wrong I am just saying because I feel so.
  8. MrCrowbar, Dec 19, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2011

    MrCrowbar macrumors 68000


    Jan 12, 2006
    Give me the exact make and model of the hard drive (size, number of paltters, everything you can find about it really) and how it was supposed to be formated. If it was a clean install of OSX with just one Macintosh HD partition, there's ways to recover it all.

    Basically you need to find out where the partitions (there's usueally just the invisible EFI partition and the Macintosh HD partition) start and how big they are. Google testdisk, chances are good that this will give you the exact numbers. Then you can get a spare hard drive (or partition on another drive, not the broken one), boot from the OSX install CD and install OSX on that drive/partition. Then you can use the command line program "dd" (or "ddrescue" if your drive has some physical damage and you get i/o errors using just dd) and simply replace the broken partition info with the newly created stuff. I recommend cloning the failing hard drive beforehand into a disk image (ddrescue is great for that, re-tries errorneous sectors until they work).

    Feel free to PM me for further instructions, I have the detailed info on the other computer.

Share This Page