Time Machine Suddenly has Error

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Melodeath, Jun 29, 2016.

  1. Melodeath macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    #1
    I'm using Time Machine on my iMac (running OS X Yosemite) with a Seagate Backup Plus 4TB USB 3.0. I've been using it since February of 2013 on my Macbook Pro, and more recently on my iMac. I got home from work today and there was a notice that the last Time Machine backup failed. When I checked the status, it seemed to be stuck around 60% through the backup, so I told it to stop/skip this backup. There is a little red icon next to the last backup, and it tells me something along the lines of "there was an Error copying files during the backup. This may be a temporary problem, but if it persists, try to verify the disk using Disk Utility." It also says the last successful backup was at 8:19AM this morning. I try restarting the computer, but again Time Machine gets stuck.

    So, I go to Disk Utility and it says I need to repair the disk. I try to repair and it says it can't repair because it can't unmount the disk. So, how do I fix this? The disk still seems to be working, but extremely slowly. What happened exactly? Is the drive itself busted, or did Time Machine somehow hose the file system on it? What should I do next? I'm currently attempting to transfer off some non-critical files onto a different external before I maybe attempt wiping the drive. Thank you for the help
     
  2. thats all folks macrumors 6502a

    thats all folks

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2013
    Location:
    Austin (supposedly in Texas)
    #2
    sounds like the drive is done and time to buy a new one. you got over 3 years out of it, I'd say that is good for a basic consumer grade drive. Time machine can be taxing for a drive with tons of repetetive little transactions.
     
  3. jgelin macrumors 6502a

    jgelin

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2015
    Location:
    St Petersburg, FL
    #3
    This is not particularly true. This error happens frequently with time machine.

    OP: I have recovered from this very same issue but I cannot remember what it was that I did. Someone on here helped me, let me see if I can find the thread.
     
  4. chscag macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #4
    I agree with "thats all folks". That drive can no longer be trusted. Backup what you can from it and replace it. Disk Utility stating that drive needs to be repaired is not a Time Machine problem, it's a hardware problem. Bad hard drive.
     
  5. jgelin macrumors 6502a

    jgelin

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2015
    Location:
    St Petersburg, FL
    #5
    Have you stopped the backupd process in activity monitor? Then attempt the repair again and see if it can do so successfully.
     
  6. thats all folks macrumors 6502a

    thats all folks

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2013
    Location:
    Austin (supposedly in Texas)
    #6
    yes, the drive might be fine. OP can try a reformat and see how that goes or he can just get a new drive and know that it works. what are we talking about here, $150? to secure all of your data.

    Melodeath, I suggest that whatever you decide, you still have another drive that you clone your system over to, while you work this out, that way whatever happens with Time machine, you have a known and reliable, if maybe slightly outdated backup, if you end up needing it.
     
  7. Melodeath thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    #7
    You may be right. A similar thing happened to my first Time Machine drive after a similar amount of time. After about 3 years it ceased to be recognized by any computer. It "fixed" itself after a couple months sitting on the shelf doing nothing, but I never trusted it again. Is there somewhere I can buy higher than "consumer grade" external HDs?

    Looking in Activity Monitor, I don't see any entries for a Time Machine process.

    Can you explain this process? I've never done cloning on a Mac - always just used Time Machine
     
  8. grahamperrin macrumors 601

    grahamperrin

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    #8
    What exactly is presented? With Yosemite you should be able to copy from the main Disk Utility window, or its log window.
     
  9. Melodeath thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    #9
    I will have to check again and take note when this file transfer is finished, but from memory I recall something like "File System Check Exit Code 8"
     
  10. thats all folks macrumors 6502a

    thats all folks

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2013
    Location:
    Austin (supposedly in Texas)
    #10
    I think for this case, a higher grade drive isn't worth the added cost and energy consumption. all drives can and will eventually fail, SSDs too. so the only real way to be fully protected is to have at least two backups. I like the combination of TimeMachine and a clone. I'm fine with portable USB drives for backup only use. they are small and use bus power so they stay out of the way, they are simple so less parts overall to fail (I've thrown away so many dead wall warts over the years) and they are cheap enough that when it's time to get more or bigger, it's less of a financial hit and less painful to keep a couple around for just in case.

    Cloning can be done a few different ways. I've been using the app, SuperDuper for several years. it's basic features (simple cloning) can be had for free. the paid version simplifies keeping that clone up to date, among other things. for cloning you want a dedicated target drive as the process actually formats the drive. I think using it is simple enough that you should have no trouble figuring it out. and once you have made the clone, you have a volume you can actually boot off of, should your system drive go completely down. even boot on another computer if you need to get back up and running quickly with what was on there.
     
  11. JohnDS macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    #11
    You need to check BOTH your internal drive and the external drive for errors.

    To check the internal drive, boot from the recovery partition by booting while holding down Command-R. Then go to disk utility. Highlight MacIntosh HD in the left pane and click on Repair Disk.

    Then click on the volume for your external drive, (not the drive itself) and run Repair Disk on it.
     

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