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hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

hi all.

 

i am getting a failure "Unable to Complete Backup/ Time Machine Could not Complete the Backup" with the above explanation and i am not seeing an FAQ of this on J Pondini's excellent set of documents (what a job!).

 

should i just reformat my external drive and start over again (sigh)?

 

I have 1.03 TB used on my 2 TB primary drive and my Backup Drive is showing 133.29 GB available on a 3 TB drive.

 

is there a setting here i should be checking?

 

thanks


MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1), with 64 bit Win7 Boot Camp | iCloud
  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    i am getting a failure "Unable to Complete Backup/ Time Machine Could not Complete the Backup" with the above explanation and i am not seeing an FAQ of this on J Pondini's excellent set of documents (what a job!).

    Thanks!   But it must not be all that good if you didn't see the reference and link to  Time Machine - Troubleshooting.     

     

    See #C10 there.

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    hi james. sorry i was looking in the faq area and was not able to find this for some reason.

     

    so i am running disk repair per A5a and my understanding is that i am selecting the drive in Disk Utility (in this case it is called "3 TB G-Tech" and i run Disk Repair which goes fine and then i am selecting the partition under this (i only have one since this is my Time Machine backup) but when i try and run this I get an error indicating that it cannot unmount the volume.

     

    so in reading some of the other documents i got the idea to open time machine prefs and to turn OFF Time Machine but i get this same error.

     

    this is an /external/ drive so i am thinking that i do not need to follow the instructions on A5 that talk about trying to run a Repair on a startup drive since this is an external hard drive and it is my TM backup.

     

    Verify Disk OTOH on this volume says it is OK...

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    i am selecting the partition under this (i only have one since this is my Time Machine backup) but when i try and run this I get an error indicating that it cannot unmount the volume.

    That means some other process is trying to use it. 

     

    Verify Disk OTOH on this volume says it is OK..

    Then you don't need to repair it.   (If it had found errors, sometimes if you Restart your Mac, the process that was trying to use it will let go so you can run the repair;  if not, yes, you'd need to follow the procedure for your startup drive.)

     

    Try the other things in #C10.

     

    How old is this drive? 

     

    There might have been a temporary connection problem -- make sure all connections are snug and secure; try different ports, cables, and combinations (a plug that works fine in one port may not make good contact in another).

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    hi james.

     

    drive is like 2 months old and is a replacement for a drive that seems to have been creating boot problems for me for one reason or another that i did not understand.

     

    anyway, it appears that simply getting to step 4 and turning OFF time machine and then turning off the external HD and then turning everything back on has solved this.

     

    i will post back if there are more problems or certainly it would be good to know if this solution is not ideal for one reason or another.

     

    in any event i really do hope they have given you an honorary doctorate along with a some travel stipend or something.

     

    there are a ton of us that would be lost without you.

     

    THANKS

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    in any event i really do hope they have given you an honorary doctorate along with a some travel stipend or something.

     

     

    You're quite welcome.    Keep us posted.

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    aaar-g

     

    so i got a successful backup this morning and now it is saying it is appears to be a read only disk!

     

    should i continue on with the deleting of the Plist file?

     

    this is sort of a bummer since i just did a full first backup only like 3 weeks ago.

     

    - jon

     

    1.png

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    See #C6 in Time Machine - Troubleshooting -- mostly same fixes as #C10.

     

    The drive may only be 2 months old, but it sure seems to be failing.    That does happen sometimes.

     

    Double-check all the connections, try different ports & cables, but it sounds like time to contact the maker.

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    holy canoli james.

     

    i just had /two/ 2 TB internal Western Digital Black Caviar drives fail in the last four or five months with the second one just getting replaced about two weeks ago. i still have the old one here waiting to get mailed back

     

    this 3 TB G-Tech drive went back due to some dumb issue with data on it corrupting my boot procedure and i just did my first backup on this drive on April 28th!

     

    i am using firewire 800 on each end with the connection to the back of the computer.

     

    what do i tell the manufacturer if Disk Utility says it is verified? should i run a Tech Tools to see if there are bad sectors or do i just tell them that it is acting up with Time Machine?

     

    lord, talk about two steps forward and one step back...

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    i just had /two/ 2 TB internal Western Digital Black Caviar drives fail in the last four or five months with the second one just getting replaced about two weeks ago. i still have the old one here waiting to get mailed back

     

    this 3 TB G-Tech drive went back due to some dumb issue with data on it corrupting my boot procedure and i just did my first backup on this drive on April 28th!

     

    i am using firewire 800 on each end with the connection to the back of the computer.

    What are these drives plugged-in to?  If directly to a wall socket, try a good (ie, not cheap) surge protector, or, better, a U.P.S. system.  If the drives are getting power spikes, dips, or blips, it certainly won't do them any good, and may cause damage.

     

    And if you haven't tried new cables, do so.  They can have invisible damage.  Not likely, but possible.

     

    what do i tell the manufacturer if Disk Utility says it is verified?

    All that does is verify the directory structure;  it tests nothing about the disk hardware or electronics at all.

     

    should i run a Tech Tools to see if there are bad sectors

    Run any diagnostics you can.  They may or may not find what's wrong, but if you got 'em, use 'em.

     

    or do i just tell them that it is acting up with Time Machine?

    You might try copying folders with lots (ie, thousands) of sub-folders to it, such as the top-level System, Library, or Applications folders.  Try it several times.  What Time Machine does is a bit more involved than that, but if you eventually see similar problems, it will be a bit more clear. 

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    erg.

     

    i bought a used APC UPS 1000 and had a new battery put in it about six months ago. this seems to work and report back to the Mac Pro just fine AFAIK. i /do/ notice that it sounds off about once a week but my expectation is that it is just covering my butt when it does this.

     

    my computer and really everything critical like a powered external goes into this.

     

    is it possible it is getting overloaded in some way?

     

    i mean, it sounds like i basically need to use new cables and run diagnostics and see if i can get the backup working regularly.

     

    is there such a thing as SATA to FW 800? i mean, i have a open FW 800 port and i have a SATA connection and a SATA to USB cable that i could use for this device but i have no real USB slots that i can use for this. or - i guess i can use a FW 800 and find a cable that goes to one of the rounded off connections in this computer?

     

    i also seem to have  USB 2.0 connection to this device but i am guessing (?) that this cable would be a USB 2.0 to USB 1.0 if i use this connection...

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    hi james.

     

    just thinking out loud here while i talk to an expert.

     

    for a 100 dollars should i plunk down on Disk Warrior if i also have a laptop and don't mind upgrading my toolset here? if so, are there tests that would be good to run using this software in a case such as this?

     

    thanks...

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    is it possible it is getting overloaded in some way?

    I don't think so.  I've had very good luck with APC.

     

     

    i mean, it sounds like i basically need to use new cables and run diagnostics and see if i can get the backup working regularly.

    I'd be inclined to run them and see if anything shows errors.  If so, you know to contact the maker.

     

    I posted in a hurry before (on my way to the Doc). You might want to check your logs for things like I/O errors. Use the Console app, and filter for I/O error in the String Matching box.  They'll look something like:

     

    I/O error disk1s2

     

    Disk assignments (the 1 in the message) change as you disconnect and reconnect drives.  The second number is the number of the partition (there's usually a hidden EFI partition, so the first one you see in Disk Utility is usually 2).

     

    To translate that into a disk name, click the Apple icon in your menubar, then About this Mac, then, More Info, then System Report.  In the sidebar of the window that produces, click either Firewire or USB, then look for a BSD name that matches the notation in the message.

     

     

    is there such a thing as SATA to FW 800? i mean, i have a open FW 800 port and i have a SATA connection and a SATA to USB cable that i could use for this device but i have no real USB slots that i can use for this. or - i guess i can use a FW 800 and find a cable that goes to one of the rounded off connections in this computer?

    I don't know offhand.

     

     

    i also seem to have  USB 2.0 connection to this device but i am guessing (?) that this cable would be a USB 2.0 to USB 1.0 if i use this connection...

    Even if it's slow, if you don't have problems with the USB conection, then you know it isn't the physical drive, but somewhere in the FireWire channel, port, cable, or F/W chipset in the drive.

  • Pondini Level 8 Level 8 (38,720 points)

    hotwheels 22 wrote:

    . . .

    for a 100 dollars should i plunk down on Disk Warrior if i also have a laptop and don't mind upgrading my toolset here? if so, are there tests that would be good to run using this software in a case such as this?

    D/W is probably a good investment for directory problems, but as far as I know the hardware diagnostics only run on the boot drive, for some reason.  I've never used them, though.

  • hotwheels 22 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    hi james.

     

    thanks a ton for this.

     

    i plugged here in to the front of the computer with the same Firewire 800 cable and it has backed up again as of this evening. always nice to solve a problem and learn a thing or two.

     

    for what it is worth i always feel a pang of guilt not being able to send 10 bucks to that resource you have online...

     

    i'm telling you they should be spotting you some something or other over there at apple. it's been like a rock solid and mission critical resource for going on a long time now.

     

    :  )

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