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Time Machine backups to WD My Book Live terribly slow

36202 Views 44 Replies Latest reply: Apr 2, 2014 6:46 PM by julianel RSS
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Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Jan 12, 2013 1:29 PM

I got a Western Digital My Book Live for Christmas and have set it up to take Time Machine backups over my home Wifi network.


Unlike many other posts I've seen, my initial backup took a reasonable amount of time in my opinion.  My initial backup was about 400 GB and it did it over night in about 12 hours.  I did however plug my Macbook into my router via ethernet in hopes that would be faster (the My Book is also plugged into the same router via ethernet).  This was 2-3 weeks ago.


Since then, I have set Time Machine to off as I use my Macbook at work each day and manually tell Time Machine to backup when I'm at home with my computer.  I didn't want Time Machine to constantly have errors while looking for my backup disc when I was at work and not at home.


I have been trying to a manual backup all weekend now with no luck.  I have approximately 5 GB to backup, and Time Machine is only backing up 50 MB an hour if that.  I have even plugged in my computer via ethernet again.


Any ideas on how to speed this up?  I've also read a lot about Spotlight indexing slowing TM down, but I don't think Spotlight is indexing right now.

MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), Non-unibody, 4 GB RAM, 2.2 GHz
  • leroydouglas Level 6 Level 6 (13,330 points)

    Rick Wall wrote:


    Time Machine is only backing up 50 MB an hour if that.

    Agreed that is crazy slow.



    WD use to be problematic for Macs, is this still the case?


    Did you you reformat the WD with the correct partitioning scheme and format ; and get rid of the proprietary backup software?


    Also TimeMachine if left on, can take local snapshots, and maybe be a benefit to you.



    Does not answer your question I know.

    MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), 2.4GHz IntelCorei5 320GB HD 8GB RAM
  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,810 points)

    Backing up to a network device other than a Time Capsule or another Mac is unsupported by Apple, and in my view, unsafe. If it doesn't work, your only recourse is to the device vendor, which will blame Apple. Apple will blame the vendor.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (107,810 points)

    Time Machine has special requirements that have to met by the file server. It's up to the device vendor to meet those requirements. You have no assurance that they've actually done it, and reports on this site suggest that some, at least, do not.

  • Ruadh2 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    The WD website says that it is now compatible with-apple-time-machine-backups with Time Machine.  This forum post-dates the WD posting.  Did anybody use the WD update?

  • Ruadh2 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yes, that's what I meant, but also that you were using WD's current recommended settings .  I was just wanting to confirm that this drive's many documented problems had now been fixed, as it seems to have lots of potential.  I guess if you're still having problems (albeit resolved) with the latest updates, then, in considering purchase, I'd need to allow for lots of time to fix issues.

  • ARI-Boy Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Rick, are you able to say what version of the firmware you are running on the WD My Book Live?


    I've seen a few topics on these forums, discussing various issues with 'My Book Live' and Time Machine (the primary use I want it for) so I'm therefore currently wary of buying this device – although it looks perfect for my needs, and is substantially cheaper than the crazily priced Time Capsule.

  • 1234! Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I believe its because you are logging in Time Machine as Guest...

    **Dont log in as guest


    Try again. Remove the Backup Disc>Turn Time Machine Off Then On.


    Login to the WD Drive as Registered User: Username admin Password: There isnt one...


    hope this helps

  • SparkleShark Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I am researching why my Mac olways hangs and hogs disk for some 15 or 20 seconds before the TM backup ...


    What I suspect is, that the MyBook life solves the problem of wrong disk format by creating a disk image on the backup share. Now each time TM wants to back up it needs to mount the disk image on the MyBook live share ...


    Could that be the problem? And do you see it as solvable? I gather one can not format the share in a different format, can one? Probably the MBL OS can not handle a mac partition or could there be a separate Mac partition created?


    Or is it maybe checksum verification?


    I certainly would need someone technically better skilled to help with this anoying occurance ...

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