Previous 1 2 Next 15 Replies Latest reply: Dec 19, 2010 3:43 PM by Siberian
Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
I'm trying to copy large files from a FW drive to a USB drive. Both drives are fine as are the files, however every file I try and copy over I get the same error message "error code -36". I believe this has surfaced since the last upgrade from 10.5.6 or 7 to 10.5.8.

Anyone else have this issue? TIA

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.5.8), 2 Gigs of RAM
  • William Boyd, Jr. Level 6 Level 6 (10,515 points)
    Siberian wrote:
    every file I try and copy over I get the same error message "error code -36".


    That seems to be a popular error recently. If you do a Web search for "finder copy error 36" (without the quotes), you'll see a number of mentions, some with advice.

    If you need to come back here for more advice, please describe the format of the source and destination drives.
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    Thanx for your replies. No I'm not out of disk space, it's not a permissions issue, VLC and any other program can see and access the files with no problem and the Finder actually finds them as well. It's copying that's the problem. They are relatively large files. 900Megs to 7.3 Gigs.

    Transfer from HD to FW device is fine, no problems. It's going FROM FW to HD or FW to USB that the error appears.

    Here's a convoluted way to get them over. Transfer rates are abysmal. This is going from a FW device to a USB 2 device.

    Run Data Rescue and dump the files onto the HD. Then copy them over from there. PAINFULLY slow. Any ideas? TIA

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    Is the troublesome HD formatted MSDOS?
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    Alas no... 8-)

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    Sometimes this problem is just an impossibility. Reformatting the drive will probably solve the problem but obviously that is a PITA.
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    It is. What's interesting is that file is visible and accessible - yet Time Machine can't back it up, Finder can't invoke File Copy. The files are HFS+ Journaled. I also tried two separate FW cables, same issue. I rebooted, I also shut the machine down and the same conditions persist. The drive is a Seagate 200Gig external drive.

    Oh well, was just hoping for some miracle or "duh dude, why don't you...". Thank you for taking the time. Appreciate it. Will reformat the drive once Data Rescue manages to transfer what's on it - probably two weeks at the rate it's going 8-)

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    If you've read through most of the info on the error you will know that a corrupted file can cause this problem and produce an Error -36 alert. Also the filename (too long or contains illegal characters) can elicit the error. You may want to verify that the file in question isn't damaged or uses a questionable filename.
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    Kappy, I did read through most of entries related to this error code. The files are fine. As I said, VLC for example can access them and play them. The names are well within the length norm with no illegal characters. So it seems to be a finder/copy routine bug as everything else works. To recap:
    * FW Drive is seen by the Mac,
    * Files are seen by the OSX
    * File names are fine
    * FW device was tested with TWO separate cables both produce the same error
    * VLC, for example, is able to access and play them
    * Time Machine can NOT back them up
    * Copy can't copy them (to the HD or external USB device)
    * Data Rescue retrieves and copies the files to the HD with no problem.
    * Copy works from the HD to the USB device

    So unless I'm missing something... once you eliminate everything else, whatever remains must be the truth. There's a bug (don't know if in 10.5.8 or earlier as it's been a while since I accessed the device). Always willing to try something else. Thanx for your time

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    No, I'm out of ideas. This error has been around forever in all Linux/Unix versions around for a long long time - even before OS X. So, I don't know why it occurs (despite all the info about it) but I don't think it's an OS X bug unless it's a bug in every LInux/Unix out there.

    I wish I had a solution for you, but as far as I know nobody has provided a definitive cause and/or fix.
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    I thank you again for your time. A last question, I know this is out on left field, but could it be FW related?

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    Frankly, I don't know. It is a form of I/O error so it may or may not be drive related.
  • Siberian Level 1 Level 1 (105 points)
    I was lucky in the sense that the Seagate is both a FW and USB drive. I thus connected it on the USB port to the Mac and it now works perfectly. Thus it would seem it's a FW problem either on the Seagate side or the Mac side as I no longer get the -36 error and files copy over normally over USB.

    Thanx for your help!

    siberian
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (257,560 points)
    Weird, isn't it? Some users have that success while others don't, so I have no idea what to blame it on. Anyway problem is at least partly solved.
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