Defective Partition

I recently got back from a week-long trip, and I discovered that the partition I use for the Macintosh backup utility, Time Machine, was unable to be backed up. I discovered that by using the Disk Utility that the partition (NOT the entire disk) was unable to be repaired and had to be formatted. I formatted the disk, and I thought that was the end of it. The next day, I received the notification that the backup failed and the system suggested that I check the disk’s status via Disk Utility. I did so via Verify Disk, and I ran into the same problem:  the disk couldn’t be repaired when I went to verify it and had to be formatted again. I did so, and the today, I got a different notification regarding Time Machine; the backup disk couldn’t be backed up, but it did not say to go to Disk Utility, but rather to try again later with the backup; I tried again with the backup and I got the same error message shortly after the backup began. I decided that it was worth verifying the disk again, but this time I went straight to repairing the disk and skipping Verify Disk. Oddly, the utility said that the disk was in good status. I tried Time Machine and it seemed to to work for a while, but I have a good feeling this won’t last. Anyone else have this problem?

HI there, first time I see this so I’ll say I think it’s quite odd.

Do you have Boot Camp on your Mac or a Windows computer to try DLG or HD Tune to test the drive? I don’t think Disk Utility is enough…

To answer you questions, no I do not have Boot Camp or a Windows computer to test this on, but now the problem seems to have gone away, but I get the notification every once in a while, but if I just back up the hard drive again, everything seems to work. Another problem I’m facing is that Tie Machine is getting “stuck” at a certain piont in the backup (i.e. it says 20.9 MB of 42.0 MB back up, and it stays that way). I also forgot to mention that, although I believe that this is a separate incident, I had to repair the partition once when it got damaged via a power outage, but that resulted in a successful repair and it seemed to work fine from then on.

Edit: I tried to verify/repair the partition again and I ended up having to erase it again.

Power outages may cause drive corruption, at this point my advice to you is to try saving the data on another location and re test the drive.

Everything seems to be going fine now.

I’ll post if anything else comes up.

I just had to do another drive erase today, but time Machine had been moving slowly for the past few weeks.

This is getting ridiculous…

Alright, I’m stopping Time Machine now. I’ll just use the WD Smartware for backups, although system files won’t be backed up…ah well. I know somebody who I can borrow an external from. I’ll backup my stuff on his drive, re-format my entire drive, and hopefully that will solve the problem.

did you, by chance, create more than one partition on the external drive and used Time Machine on just one of them?  also, were you using smartware at the same time?  cause, I think Time Machine requires the use of the complete drive to work right, as one partition.  it’s also possible that Time Machine may have been damaged.

Yes, I was using Time Machine on that partition only (the reason why I made it a duo partition drive in the first place). I was not using WD Smartware on the same, but I did initially use it. I later stopped using Smartware since Time Machine made it pointless and it was freezing a few times upon startup. I’m thinking Time Machine may have gotten damaged somehow (like I said before, I was gone a week, and the person who was house-sitting doesn’t know anything about computers). I would run a disk verification on the Macintosh HD, but I’m afraid if it come back bad, I won’t have a means to back up the computer properly. Fortunately, I have an uncle who is an Apple fanatic, so hopefully he can spare me an external drive so I can reformat/repartition my entire disk and try Time Machine once again, but for now, WD Smartware will have to do. I’ll be sure to post if anything else changes.

I just tried using Time Machine again (still w/ the WD backups) and did a Disk Verify after a few backups were made. The Disk Verify took a while, but it came back clean. I turned the automatic backups off. I’ll just backup manually for now w/ Time Machine. I’ll try using ome other utilities and see if one of them can pin-point the problem.

EDIT: Also, are there any other utilities other there that I can use that work on Mac? I don’t have a Windows computer or a copy of the OS.

xboxboy9394 wrote:

Yes, I was using Time Machine on that partition only (the reason why I made it a duo partition drive in the first place). I was not using WD Smartware on the same, but I did initially use it. I later stopped using Smartware since Time Machine made it pointless and it was freezing a few times upon startup. I’m thinking Time Machine may have gotten damaged somehow (like I said before, I was gone a week, and the person who was house-sitting doesn’t know anything about computers). I would run a disk verification on the Macintosh HD, but I’m afraid if it come back bad, I won’t have a means to back up the computer properly. Fortunately, I have an uncle who is an Apple fanatic, so hopefully he can spare me an external drive so I can reformat/repartition my entire disk and try Time Machine once again, but for now, WD Smartware will have to do. I’ll be sure to post if anything else changes.

what I think you need to know is that time machine takes control of the whole drive.  If you are trying to run time machine on a drive with multiple partitions, that is probably why time Machine was freezing up on you.  and you definitely can’t run smartware on one partition and time machine on another.  that definitely would cause you problems.

you need to reformat the drive as one partition and let time machine own the drive.  then you shouldn’t have any problems. 

Would I have problems right away then? I was using the duo partition for a good few months before all of this happened. I can’t remeber when specifically when or for how long I was using WD Smartware, but I know I stopped it since it was useless due to Time Machine, and I was still running Time Machine for a good amount of months before this all happened. 

yeah, it could.  but there could be other things as well.  I would either contact the apple store and ask someone, or maybe check online with apple to see what exactly the conditions need to be to run time machine.  also, are you using the latest version of your mac os?  this way we can get rid of guessing.  I know how to use a mac, but I don’t keep up with mac issues, and that may be the problem. 

I have the latest (10.6.8). I’m going to the Apple Store today, so I could ask them there. The peson who I plan on borrowing the external from said I might have bad sectors on the drive.

that’s always possible.  I would check the drive for bad sectors as well.  however, I don’t think wd’s disk utility is mac compatible.  so, you may need to get a utility that can do that.

I just tried using the diagnostics tests with the WD Smartware, but they failed. Then again, you did say they weren;t compatable. Well, the drive is still under waranty, so I’ll just have it replaced. I already called in to do so.

we tried… :cry:

Also, just to avoid confusion, the Genius at the Apple Store said Time Machine has no problem running on a multi-partition disk. He said i creates a file and “it’s just like any database file.”  Not sure if that was a previous problem you mentioned with Time Machine controlling the entire disk or not.

absolutely, since it’s been a while since I worked with time machine, they most likely updated it and took care of those issues.