Time Machine Backup Trouble

If your Time Machine backup fails, try these fixes:

There are lots of hints on Apple’s Time Machine Troubleshooting page.

If you believe that the data on your TM drive may need to be repaired:

If your Mac is freezing up when TM runs, and you’ve found yourself needing to force a restart or power down:

Formatting your hard drive:

Note: Connect your HD directly to your computer for formatting. Once connected and powered up, run Disk Utility.

Your HD must be properly formatted to work with TM. The HD must use a Partition Map Scheme of either GUID Partition Table (for Intel Macs) or Apple Partition Map (for PPC Macs).

Partition Map Scheme

Partition Map Scheme

It must also use a Format of Mac OS Extended (Journaled).




Below you’ll find miscellaneous notes about Time Machine. Many were gleaned from MacWorld forums.

Moving Time Machine to a new hard drive:

This may may be required if you get a larger drive for TM or if you need to reformat your existing TM drive. Dragging your old TM backup folder to a new drive does NOT work.

Hard drive partitioning & formatting:

What Time Machine shouldn’t backup:


January 18, 2010 • Tags: , • Posted in: Troubleshooting

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