7 Replies Latest reply: Jul 7, 2013 9:01 PM by languid
languid Level 1 (0 points)

I was unable to drag and drop any files in the of hierachy of time machine folders because it resulted inhe follwoing error pop-up:


"The operation can't be completed because backup items can't be modified." Click "OK."


I can't use Disk Utility Restore because I can't select the source files/folders.


Is there any other way besides enabling Root User through /System/Library/CoreServices/Directory Utility.App or via terminal with sudo?


This was the only way I could drag and drop any folders from deeper down the folder hierarchy of Backups.backupdb. I could not copy or create a disk img anything from within Backups.backupdb. Enabling Root User still did not allow me to drag and drop Backups.backupdb in its entirety.


Thank you for your adivce.


<Edited by Host>

MBP, Mac OS X (10.6.6), Deeter Rules Sprockets
  • baltwo Level 9 (62,215 points)

    See Pondini's TM FAQs, for starters. IMO, there's never a good reason to enable the root user account, since almost everything can be done using sudo or su in the Terminal.

  • ds store Level 7 (30,325 points)

    TimeMachine is a newbie backup system with safeguards, if you want more control you need a bootable clone.


    Most commonly used backup methods

  • languid Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi baltwo,


    Thank you for the recommendation. I had already looked over that site but at your advice I went back to double check. Unfortunately it does not address my specific situation with any working methods.


    I welcome any future suggestions that involve specific methods that you might have or specific web pages addressing my current dilemma.


    Thank you kindly for your advice.

  • languid Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi ds store,


    Thank you for posting a reply. I was disappointed it had nothing to do with my current situation.


    I skimmed your essay.


    I recommend that you consider writing in a more consise manner, avoiding speculation and commiting yourself to better reseach. What did help with the large word count was the way you broke it up with header changes and such. Overall, the extra editorialization becomes tiresome at such a length which muddies the takeaway.


    While you have good things to share, some of your work is more tabloid and sensationalized which devalues any credibility you started with. Determine who your audience is. I recommend you write with Pondini as your main audience in mind. You'll note Pondini took the time to address your leviathan and that his helpful comments could have been avoided by both refraining from tabloid stylistics and producing more sophisticated research. I recommend writing from your experience and avoid making grand comments that leave no room for other ideas because it can be bad strategy which may further deteriorate your credibility.


    Please make an effort to speak to any original post in the future. When a person leaves a comment to an article that doesn't address the original post topic it further dilutes the creibility of any replies.


    Thank you again for taking the time to post reply.I look forward to reading what you have to share as your writing develops because it does seem as if you have some experience as well as the wind.

  • languid Level 1 (0 points)

    This is what I know so far.


    With no access hard drive access I speculated my quickest choice was to another attempt making a disk image of the whole drive with Disk Utility. I selected the whole partitioned drive and it worked to make a disk image.


    I can't say if I didn't have the root user initiated, via Director Utility, when it failed before but I did have it enabled the second time. I successfully made a disk image, which took forever. I was able to successfully verify and open the disk image file on a new hard drive. The initial verification was also brutal but less than overnight. Once opened, the disk image contents were untouchable, uncopyable and immoveable by Finder and with the Root User enabled.


    Using Terminal I found CP couldn't touch it. SUDO CP had access but it flagged symbolic link errors.


    What worked to move the Time Machine files out of the disk image was sudo cp -RP which handled the files without errors.


    However, using BASH to copy files seems to take FOREVER.


    Through further research I discovered rsync.


    Along the way, I discovered iTerm which is a nice terminal emulator.


    Using iTerm and rsync I am now finishing my movement of Time Machine files. I believe that Time Machine compresses the files somehow because the footprint is much, much larger than what is was before. The rsync command line I used to move the Time Machine files from another hard drive into a disk image and back out onto another hard drive was:


    rsync -avzdlkp --compare-dest --stats --progress


    If you look up rsync you can see why it is taking so long because I have a bunch of options and safe guards to keep the transfer OCDed. When this is all done, I will re-start Time Machine and see if all this effort produces a working folder. and post my findings.


    I speculate that with rsync I may have been able to move the files off the faulty hard drive but the risk of total failure was higher. Even though it may have been possible if I had known, I think a disk image is much faster to make when you have a crippled six month old Seagate desk top Backup Plus, than rsync or sudo cp is to copy and verify files using terminal.

  • baltwo Level 9 (62,215 points)

    Hmm! I would have thought that Viewing and Restoring via the Finder would have done the trick. I don't use TM, so you'll have to await a TM guru to pop in.


    BTW, since this isn't a classroom, acting like the school marm won't get you any attention. If the advice doesn't fit, say so and leave your helpful or not so helpful pedantic comments on the cutting room floor.

  • languid Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Baltwo,


    Thank you for your kind advice when you're not a Time Machine user. Your adivce was good and the page you you kindly took the time to referr me to, works for that case. Pondini has a lot of information on his web site but his methods for moving Time Machine files wasn't working for me.


    Unfortunately, it's my fault that I wasn't more clear in my original post.


    I'm moving Time Machine files from a crippled hard drive to a new hard drive.


    The permissions on my Time Machine backup files are not very cooperative. Apple and ther online resources deliver methods that don't seem to work in my case.


    Rsync happens to be working so far.


    Thanks again for taking the time to look up something and be of assistance.