View Full Version : Cannot Complete Backup - Never have in 10 tries.

07-10-2006, 11:36 AM
I downloaded Super Duper as an Intel native replacement for Retrospect. It seems faster, more Mac like and all the rest BUT I can't buy yet because:

It cannot complete a full backup. I strongly suspect permissions are to blame, but I have set it to automatically repair permissions and have done so from root using Disk Utility as well as Onyx.

Worse, sometimes it thinks it is still working, chugging away on file 286,789 out of 368,910 or whatever number and when trying to stop or quit I get a crash. Because of this I haven't been able to send error emails or copy the text. Any attempt to open TextEdit, Word, BBEdit, etc after Super Duper fails is fine, I can paste the log text but I try to save the file and my external drive spins up and the program crashes. Also cannot eject the external drive without a restart.

This is a MacBook 13" 2 GHZ w/ 10.4.7. It occurs when running Path Finder and in Finder, and logged in as root or as regular administrative user. External is Acomdata FW 400 60 GB.

07-10-2006, 11:49 AM
Hi, neuralgia. You're getting a crash and the system is locking up? I really don't think this has anything to do with permissions.

Rather, it sounds to me like your Acomdata drive is locking your FireWire bus. This wouldn't be hugely surprising, since Acomdata is known for using Oxford "compatible" FireWire bridge boards, usually either Initio or Prolific (I believe the latter). These non-Oxford bridges aren't fully compatible and, in some heavy use situations, can cause this exact kind of problem.

Another possibility is that the drive in the case has bad spots, and is causing the bus to lock as the controller retries its write or read.

Finally, it could be another FireWire device (iSight/iPod) causing problems on the bus by drawing too much power or causing voltage fluctuations.

So, the first thing I'd do is simplify FireWire to just this one drive, and then use Disk Utility to erase and ZERO the FireWire drive. This should remap any bad sectors. Make sure to use the "Apple Partition Map" partitioning scheme, should you have a choice.

When that's done, give it another try, and see if it works better.

07-10-2006, 03:31 PM

Very possible. The drive is older, and has been my backup drive for about 2 years now. When I reformatted it I canceled the zero that was taking forever and just quick formated it. And I have used Retrospect succesfully for years but it doesn't exactly saturate the bus as it works soooo slooooowwwwwwllllyyyyyy.

I am not using any other firewire devices but I will try to zero and then try the program again. I am due for a new hard drive anyway to match my larger 100 GB internal drive. Any companies you guys recommend as being fully compliant?


07-10-2006, 03:33 PM
I like the Maxtor OneTouch II/III, LaCie d2/d3, WiebeTech and OWC units (with Oxford bridges -- some aren't Oxford based), and test against all of them routinely.

07-13-2006, 12:21 PM
Tried a 7 pass zero and the program still poops out at just around the same file number, 238,656 or so. It once again crashed before I could get a screenshot, although I did take with camera. I notice the speed at that point is up to almost double what it was in the first 10 minutes of copying, around 10.5 mb/sec, and it is definitely locking the drive up and bus. I went back to Retrospect and was able to copy but Retrospect is slower than your product. Looks like I might have to upgrade my drive to handle all the superness of SuperDuper!.

07-13-2006, 12:28 PM
Yeah, a shot of a crashed screen isn't going to help much, unfortunately.

You might want to try opening the Console application and showing the system log. Then, see what the last bit of info it has in it when the system hangs: that might give a clue about what's going on.

In the end, though, it seems likely the drive itself is just having big problems with OSX under load...