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About dradogg

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    New Mac Geek
  1. dradogg

    Backup with Time Machine

    Time Machine Error After several hard drive failures and lost data over the years, I have become a convert to the religion of backing up data. I purchased Carbon Copy Cloner but after listening to Adam Christianson and others, I thought I should employ a second method for backing up my data. When Time Machine came out, I thought this was a great deal and the app made it worth purchasing Leopard. Well, it turns out that it was not so easy to use TM. I was extremely frustrated in trying to get TM to work. TM kept generating an error message, "Unable to complete backup. An error occurred while creating the backup directory." I had spent hours on trying to get the app to work. I was scouring the web for information. I purchased a new Maxtor drive to use with TM and it did not work. I spent hours reformatting three different hard drives (journaled,journaled and case sensitive or Extended only). Determined not to give up, I finally reformatted the Seagate 1.5T drive as, "journaled", excluded the Parallels Folders, the caches, the Microsoft Office Identities Folders, Missing Synch Folders, Mark/ Space folder and the virus protection app, ClamXav on the recommendation of others I found on the web who were having the same problem. I still was not able to get TM to work. After reading an article by Ryan Block <http://ryanblock.com/2008/05/good-folders-to-exclude-from-time-machine-backups/> and another article that suggested folfers in the Library (Home) may hold the culprits, I began to systematically exclude the Library Folders. Using a method learned with the Conflict Catcher app in OS 8, I exclude half of the folders to see what happened and then the other half of the folders, if the first exclusion did not work. To ensure I did not forget which files worked and which ones did not work, I made images of the files I had excluded and stored them on the desktop for a reference. The exclude files were highlighted in the images, so that I could compare what worked and what did not work. (Detailed written notes would do as well.) I finally narrowed the bad folded down to the “Livetype” folder. I did not tried to determine which files in that folder (LiveType) were causing the problem, I just excluded the whole folder. Remember to delete the backups that did not work, from the target hard drive and from the trash each time you run your test. If you don't do this the backup hard drive will fill up. Hold down the Option key when starting to delete the files from the trash. Do this so that the process of emptying the trash is not interrupted. Someone should make an app like Conflict Catcher to identify the files that conflict with TM. Addendum: A little more research pointed me to, “TM Error Logger”. It tracks the logs for TM. Examining the logs generated by TM, I found that the backups were stopping when the LiveType folder was encountered. Starting with this app (TM Error Logger) first will save a great deal of time and headache. Reading the logs is a bit tricky. I did not know what all the error codes meant. A quick search in the TM Error Logger app and the web helped. TM Error Logger will only work when one has logged in as an administrator. Since it is recommended that one doesn’t use the admin account regularly (this is to protect your computer) you may have to sign into two accounts; an admin account and an non-admin account . This will depend on how you have your computer set up. Cheers,