1 Reply Latest reply: Sep 2, 2010 4:24 PM by Pondini
doym Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I have been backing up my macbook pro to my time capsule since July 2009, and have never had a problem before. But then suddenly, last Friday, my time machine wanted to do a full new backup (about 120GB), which at first, I didn't understand why, but I let it proceed. I just realized yesterday that this created a whole new sparsebundle file, apparently because the previous sparsebundle file got deleted. But I have no idea how the old one got deleted (I didn't delete it, I didn't move the file, and the Time Machine wasn't erased/wiped). So now my backups only start from last Friday.

Is there something else that could have deleted or masked my old sparsebundle file? The only thing I can say that happened last Friday was that I was downloading a bunch of files from the internet (software, videos, etc), and possibly some virus or malware sneaked onto my computer?

I spent an hour and a half with Sr Level Apple Care support going through this, and he says only two things could have happened to erase my old backups: either (a) my Timemachine got erased or (b) i moved or deleted the sparsebundle file.

Neither of these happened:
(a) I still have other backup content that I store on my Time Capsule, so it couldn't have been fully erased.
(b) In order to erase the sparsebundle file, you have to drag it to the trash and then click to confirm that you are deleting it. I definitely didn't do this. I also didn't inadvertently move the sparsebundle file somewhere else--I checked. Furthmore, I haven't actually opened the Time Capsule disk since two weeks ago, so even if I had done something by mistake, there should be two weeks of backups since then.

Finally, I am sure no one else has accessed my network, since I have different passwords for my Airport network and for the Time Capsule.

Has anyone else seen this phenom of disappearing sparsebundle files, or has anyone heard of a virus that can delete this file on its own?

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.4)
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)
    doym wrote:

    Hi, and welcome to the forums.

    Is there something else that could have deleted or masked my old sparsebundle file?

    There is another possibility, but you'd have seen this message first:


    And clicked +Start New Backup.+ See #C13 in Time Machine - Troubleshooting for details.

    Assuming you didn't see that, a clue may be lurking in your logs. See #A1 in Troubleshooting for a handy widget. Use it to navigate to the full backup.

    As noted in the pink box in #A1, the widget may not let you go back that far, so you'll have to use the Console app instead. Either way, in that backup (or perhaps the one before it), may be a clue.

    possibly some virus or malware sneaked onto my computer?

    There are no viruses that run on OSX. None. There is a very small amount of malware (Trojans, etc.), but they can't get onto your Mac without your approval (your Admin password), and/or clicking ok to run an app that was downloaded from the internet.

    (If you're running Windoze on your Mac, it needs all the usual protections, though).