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Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

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 (14,765 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.

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Thanks for the reply.  I didn't change anything with the WD software.  My basic understanding of it is that the WD software is necessary for the drive to function as a NAS drive.  I'm not exclusively using it as a Time Machine backup disc - it's also delivering music and movies wirelessly to my Xbox, blu-ray player, phone, other computers, etc.  I believe the drive has to have something installed on it to function like this.


    My router has the option of plugging a drive into via USB, but I've tried that before with no luck.  I had to have a Windows computer open connected to the drive in order to share the movies with my xbox for example.


    I assume without the WD software, I won't be able to use it like that anymore so I just set the WD Time Machine settings to allow Time Machine backups and went at it.


    I had no idea about the local snapshots though.  I'll try leaving Time Machine on see how it goes.

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I also like that using the WD software I can access stored files over the internet from anywhere.  So I really don't want to get rid of the software on it unless there's some sort of other software I could install on it that would handle all of the above and be more compatible with TM.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (150,465 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.

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    What's the reason that a non-Apple NAS is unsafe vs. a non-Apple external drive?

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (150,465 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.

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I reset the drive and my computer a couple of times and everything returned to normal.  I also disabled the drive's "Eco" sleep function so the drive never sleeps - not sure if this is important or not.


    I also received an error message at one point stating that the TM backup image was in use.  After some quick Googling, I found out that if you have the drive open in Finder it can cause this problem.  I then made sure to eject/disconnect from the drive in Finder before telling TM to backup.  Perhaps I still had the drive connected before - but not specifically the TM backup share - and that caused it to slow down.

  • 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?

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    My OS and the WD firmware were completely up to date if that's what you're asking.

  • 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.

  • Rick Wall Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    The drive has been working flawlessly since Jan. 13.  I'm still not 100% sure this is a good device for Time Machine backups though.  It could be a complete fluke that mine didn't work right at first or it could be a complete fluke that it's working right now.  It's still been very useful to me regardless, and I think it's a great product.  As far as I can tell, it's the best non-Apple Time Machine device available.  I think the problems are mostly that Apple doesn't make it easy to use a non-Apple device not anything with Western Digital.


    As far as firmware goes, I believe my device is running the most current firmware as I checked for updates just a week ago.  I can't confirm this though as I'm currently at work.

  • 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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