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  • EvanL Level 1 Level 1

    etresoft wrote:


    ...I have a 2007 MacBook and with the twin Pratt & Whitney turbofans, I can always tell when the CPU is working because my neighbors complain they can't hear the airport noise anymore.

    Love that line (from your linked post), etresoft.




    Begin Actual Post (Problem 'Solved'):


    From what I have gathered, the OS sees some necessity in creating a new index of TM backups to suit OS 10.7. Apparently it will not accept the indices created in OS 10.6. The solutions that come to mind are either (1) deleting old TM backups and letting Lion (10.7) create its own, or (2) letting Spotlight go nuts for however long it will take to index the backup.


    My initial plan was to implement solution (1) above. As I was moments away from deleting my old backups, Spotlight finally finished indexing my TM backups, and solution (2) implemented itself.




    Some details: I'm using a wired ethernet connection between my Mac Pro and my backup volume. Etresoft emphasized this point and rightly so; indexing my backups (1.5 TB) would be an impossible task over wireless. Based on what I've seen, Spotlight indexing of TM backups is not 'restarted' after TM is run. Granted, it took over a week for solution (2) to finish on my system, but I am inclined to believe the size of my backup is largely to blame for that time committment.


    I hope this helps those of you still wrestling with this problem.



  • EvanL Level 1 Level 1

    Three days later and the problem returned...apparently what I had written above did not work out.

  • snowpocalypse Level 1 Level 1

    Only thing that worked for me was to shut off spotlight for all drives.

    In terminal: sudo mdutil -ia off

  • tonjik Level 1 Level 1

    Can I somehow switch off only Time Machine disk indexing while keeping indexing of my main drive on?




    By the way in addiiton to high CPU usage and overheating on my MacBook Pro 13 2010, I encoutered issues with my 2,5 WD external USB drive (750GB) - it was switching on and off, sometimes it occured unreadable (several pop-ups) etc. The solution (hopefully) was to download WD firmware update (released 3/8/2011)...

  • snowpocalypse Level 1 Level 1

    sudo mdutil -i off /Volumes/drivename (you can drag your disk into the terminal if you want to quickly get its path)


    I think if you don't change drive name indexing should remain off. If you still have problems your main drive might also contribute to CPU usage/Heat.

  • pendolino Level 1 Level 1

    i was reading these forums and decided and noticed that some process starting with 'bz' was running. i recall reading somewhere that backblaze could be at fault and realized that, while i'd disabled backblaze i had not actually uninstalled it as i wasn't sure if i still wanted to use their service after the trial.


    well all i did was use their uninstaller (from ->  The uninstaller is found in /Library/Backblaze/ and with 2 seconds the CPU churn disappeared including mds and mdworker!


    this was the quickest fix i've seen in a long time. thought it could help others.

  • Chap Harrison Level 1 Level 1

    There are so many threads on this topic I don't know which to join.


    I'm running Lion + Time Capsule


    I get multiple mdworkers that kick in after a TM backup, presumably because something notices that the volume is mounted.


    I can get them to go away by ejecting the volume from Finder.


    I have tried sudo mdutil -i off /Volumes/TimeMachineBackups


    I have tried dragging the Time Machines Backup device onto the Spotlight Privacy syspref, where I'm told it will only ignore other, non-backup, data on that disk.


    While these have yielded temporary relief, NOTHING stops the mdworkers from relaunching after the next backup (incidentally, I have auto-backups turned off, and a little shareware called Time Machine Editor actually runs the backups -- but I think this is immaterial since it seems to be simply the mounting of the drive that triggers spotlight indexing).


    Here's a question: does indexing go back to "square one" every time I cancel indexing by ejecting the volume, or is it possibly making progress over time?


    grr.  hate this.

  • snowpocalypse Level 1 Level 1

    Carbon Copy cloner is much better than time machine if you're looking for an alternative. Since I switched to CCC and shut off indexing mdworker hasn't shown up. I miss the old days when OSX was less buggy and much leaner!

  • etresoft Level 7 Level 7

    There seems to have been a change in how indexing is performed in Lion. It seems a bit more fragile than in Snow Leopard. I've noticed this in Time Machine and in Mail.


    The reindexing won't ever go away until you let it run to completion. If you are on a wireless link to your backup, you will need to connect an ethernet cable instead.


    You might also need to erase your Time Machine and start a new one. That is the only thing that really helped me. People who like having 2 years worth of backups might not like that advice. Personally, I don't see the point in that. I want Time Machine to be there and running and I don't care if I have to erase it every year or so. That is still at least 70 times more backups than any other backup method.

  • Chap Harrison Level 1 Level 1

    So, what about the indexing?  Is it incremental, or does it have to be done in a single, uninterrupted "session"?


    Abruptly erasing the Time Machine worries me.  Not that I think I'll suddenly need something from two years ago, but more likely two days ago, or two weeks ago. 

  • etresoft Level 7 Level 7

    Chap Harrison wrote:


    So, what about the indexing?  Is it incremental, or does it have to be done in a single, uninterrupted "session"?

    I'm pretty sure it must be done in one session. If you unmount the drives, it starts over. When I first installed Lion I could tell it was doing that because it would complain about the same bad fonts from my earliest backup.


    This is related to the general "fragility" of Lion indexing that I mentioned above. Reindexing can be done incrementally. When things work normally, it reindexes after each backup and that happens in a couple of minutes and you never notice it. But sometimes, something causes Time Machine to demand a reindex of the entire volume. When that happens, there is no getting past it.


    Abruptly erasing the Time Machine worries me.  Not that I think I'll suddenly need something from two years ago, but more likely two days ago, or two weeks ago.


    You can always copy them off to another drive. You won't have the fancy interface, but you will still have your data. I don't know any other way to get it to settle down.

  • Chap Harrison Level 1 Level 1

    So be it.  Thanks for answering.

  • Bob Boilen Level 1 Level 1

    I finally got this licked, after nothing worked, including forcing Spotlight to reindex by hiding then making all my drives available. So try this

    You'll probably want to do this when you have 5 or so hours for your drives to reindex, so before bedtime may be good.


    go to terminal

    type this

    sudo mdutil -avE

    you'll have to enter your password, but you probably know that

    this is what happened for me.


    Indexing enabled.


              Indexing enabled.


              Index is read-only.


              Index is read-only.

    /Volumes/bob's odds & ends:

              Indexing enabled.

    /Volumes/bob's time machine:

              Indexing enabled.

    /Volumes/bob's time machine/Backups.backupdb:

              Indexing enabled



    Restart you computer.


    Let the computer reindex Spotlight.

    For me that did it...nothing else I did trying to reset spotlight had worked. Now my MDS is not eating up my processor and over heating my computer.

    Much better

  • sgtphil Level 1 Level 1



    I just did the ''sudo mdutil -ia off"   This worked, cpu is cooling down.  Time Machine is still running.

  • sgtphil Level 1 Level 1

    Left the computer running over night.  All mdworker activity stopped. Backup to TimeMachine complete. cpu temperatures back to normal.


    I think Apple shouls fix this!  This exercises all hard drives far too much could hasten their demise.  I would glady do away with Spotlight, I rarely use it, how about you folks?