Skip navigation

HT1427: Mac Basics: Time Machine backs up your Mac

Learn about Mac Basics: Time Machine backs up your Mac

HT1427 Persistent Time Machine Error

336 Views 5 Replies Latest reply: Apr 24, 2014 5:38 AM by DonnaR RSS
rpbnyc Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Apr 10, 2013 10:45 AM

My new Gdrive gives me an error when executing a Time Machine backup: "Unable to complete backup. An error occurred while creating the backup folder." It only works after a reboot. How can I fix this?

MacBookPro and iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (14,025 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2013 1:06 PM (in response to rpbnyc)

    Look at C2 in the first article. Also make sure the disk is formatted properly.


    Time Machine Troubleshooting


  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (108,150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 10, 2013 1:12 PM (in response to rpbnyc)

    If you have more than one user account, these instructions must be carried out as an administrator.

    Launch the Console application in any of the following ways:

    ☞ Enter the first few letters of its name into a Spotlight search. Select it in the results (it should be at the top.)

    ☞ In the Finder, select Go Utilities from the menu bar, or press the key combination shift-command-U. The application is in the folder that opens.

    ☞ Open LaunchPad. Click Utilities, then Console in the icon grid.

    Make sure the title of the Console window is All Messages. If it isn't, select All Messages from the SYSTEM LOG QUERIES menu on the left. If you don't see that menu, select

    View Show Log List

    from the menu bar.


    Enter the word "Starting" (without the quotes) in the String Matching text field. You should now see log messages with the words "Starting * backup," where * represents any of the words "automatic," "manual," or "standard." Note the timestamp of the last such message. Clear the text field and scroll back in the log to that time. Select the messages timestamped from then until the end of the backup, or the end of the log if that's not clear. Copy them (command-C) to the Clipboard. Paste (command-V) into a reply to this message.

    If there are runs of repeated messages, post only one example of each. Don't post many repetitions of the same message.

    When posting a log extract, be selective. Don't post more than is requested.

    Please do not indiscriminately dump thousands of lines from the log into this discussion.


    Some personal information, such as the names of your files, may be included — anonymize before posting.

  • ofocus Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 26, 2013 12:03 PM (in response to Linc Davis)


    I have the same problem at two places. At home and at work. The same system (Lion) the same external drive: G-Drive 2Tb.


    Here are messages from console concerning backup failure.

    First backup works but none after.

    Partitions in two subdisks and reformating don't help.

    Please, M. Davis, have a look.




    13-09-26 12:15:29,449 Starting standard backup

    13-09-26 12:15:29,620 Backing up to: /Volumes/G-DRIVE/Backups.backupdb

    13-09-26 12:15:34,215 Error: (22) setxattr for path:/Volumes/G-DRIVE/Backups.backupdb/107029210A size:37

    13-09-26 12:15:34,224 Error: (22) setxattr for path:/Volumes/G-DRIVE/Backups.backupdb/107029210A size:37

    13-09-26 12:15:37,520 (com.akamai.client.plist[21487]) Bug: launchd_core_logic.c:4745 (26200):13

    13-09-26 12:15:44,236 Backup failed with error: 2

  • Gordon Hamachi Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 24, 2014 1:27 AM (in response to ofocus)

    I have been experiencing the same Time Machine failure with OS X 10.9.2.  Some initial number of Time Machine backups succeed, but after a few hours a backup fails with the messages below.  Thereafter, backups continue to fail until I reboot.  Then all is well for a few more hours.


    4/23/14 11:58:16.260 PM[11525]: Starting automatic backup

    4/23/14 11:58:16.297 PM[11525]: Backing up to /dev/disk2s2: /Volumes/Seagate 4TB Backup/Backups.backupdb

    4/23/14 11:58:16.621 PM[11525]: Error: (22) setxattr for path:/Volumes/Seagate 4TB Backup/Backups.backupdb/Gordon's iMac size:37

    4/23/14 11:58:16.622 PM[11525]: Backup failed with error 2: 2


    Some facts that may possibly be relevant:


    I am backing up to a Seagate "Backup Plus" desktop drive directly connected to my iMac via USB.  I used Disk Utility to copy my previous Time Machine backup volume "Macintosh HD 2", a 1 TB internal drive.  I had to do this because the Finder reliably failed when trying to drag the backup folder to the 4TB Seagate drive that is attached via USB.  Rsync also reliably failed when attempting to copy Backups.backupdb


    Even more interesting, backups to my internal Macintosh HD 2 volume never experienced this Time Machine backup failure, while backups to my external Seagate 4TB Backup volume do have this problem.  Is it possible that a Disk Utility copy of my 1 TB internal drive is somehow corrupted?  Everything checks out okay in Disk Utility, and the Seagate drive passes the Seagate Dashboard drive test.

  • DonnaR Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 24, 2014 5:38 AM (in response to rpbnyc)

    How are you connecting to the G-Drive? It should be able to work with any cable it comes with, but in fact there are known issues when connecting with FireWire. (See comments/reviews on re that issue.) The G-Drive Mobile doesn't have those problems, though.


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (1)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.