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...Now that the Mac is working well, I am using GoodSync to synchronize some essential folders on two mid-2012 MacBook Pros via a Thunderbolt 2 cable.
  • It is quite easy to set up sync sets (for backup or sync),
  • GoodSync can show and access invisible folders (in case you want to sync folders in your user library),
  • GoodSync is wonderfully transparent in analyzing the data sets and synchronizing them,
  • In case of sync conflicts, you can decide how to solve the conflict e.g. by changing the sync direction,
  • and last, but not least: GoodSync is blazingly fast.
I agree on all points — surprisingly robust for bi-directional syncing workfiles on office RAID with multiple external drives for remote work. Offers a lot of granular control. Highly recommended.
 


When I recently switched to an SSD in my spare Mac, I used a complete CCC clone, but this clone had several issues when I used it as the new startup disk in my Mac. Several system processes did not run as expected. So I erased the SSD, installed a fresh Mojave system, and migrated my data from a backup.

Now that the Mac is working well, I am using GoodSync to synchronize some essential folders on two mid-2012 MacBook Pros via a Thunderbolt 2 cable.
  • It is quite easy to set up sync sets (for backup or sync),
  • GoodSync can show and access invisible folders (in case you want to sync folders in your user library),
  • GoodSync is wonderfully transparent in analyzing the data sets and synchronizing them,
  • In case of sync conflicts, you can decide how to solve the conflict e.g. by changing the sync direction,
  • and last, but not least: GoodSync is blazingly fast.
Not sure if you are blaming Carbon Copy Cloner for the issues you experienced, but be aware Bombich is incredibly responsive to all feedback.

Does GoodSync offer one of the invaluable features of Carbon Copy Cloner, that of recognizing a missing Recovery Partition and offering a painless way to quickly create one on the destination drive?
 


KJM

Not sure if you are blaming Carbon Copy Cloner for the issues you experienced, but be aware Bombich is incredibly responsive to all feedback.
I do not want to blame anyone, and for sure I am trusting no one more than CCC when I want to clone my Mac. What I reported was just my experience when I tried to use a fresh cloned SSD as a replacement for my Mac's hard disk. I had to realize that this method was not successful. Erasing the SSD, installing a fresh system via the recovery partition and migrating my data was the better way.
My other point is: I know I could use CCC for that purpose, too, but I prefer GoodSync when I want to sync selected folders from one Mac to another Mac because of its speed and transparency.
 



Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Howard Oakley analyzed this obscure Time Machine bug, using some of his own tools:
Eclectic Light Co. said:
Time Machine beaten by the clock: backup fails due to bug
... What is odd here is that, in naming snapshots, Time Machine seems to have been doing the right thing. But whatever it was doing, an hour after local time was put back an hour, it too dropped back an hour when it shouldn’t have done. That caused a name clash with those snapshots, which couldn’t be made, and the whole backup had to be cancelled. As it happened, at that time in the morning, I was asleep in bed, and no harm was done. But the code which decides on the names of snapshots is clearly faulty. I hope that its bug(s) don’t affect any other backups.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
A useful summary from OWC:
Tom Nelson said:
How to Restore Data From Time Machine Backups
Time Machine is certainly an easy-to-use app for backing up your data. It’s free, and comes installed and ready to use with the Mac OS. In many of our Rocket Yard guides, we’ve often suggested that you perform a backup before proceeding with the rest of the steps in the guide. And for many people, that backup will be performed with Time Machine.

While we often recommend creating a backup so you can recover data should something go wrong, we rarely tell you how to recover the data.

In this Rocket Yard guide, we look at the three most often used methods to recover data from a Time Machine backup.
 


Sometime in the past (2010-2019), I had an application for OS X that could report on what files Time Machine had backed up in its most recent run. But I can't find it or remember who developed it or the application's name. Anyone remember this program?
 






Sometime in the past (2010-2019), I had an application for OS X that could report on what files Time Machine had backed up in its most recent run.
It’s also possible to use the command line for this, though it won’t work if you only backup to a remote system (since tmutil doesn’t mount a remote destination) and might not work without changes if you alternate backups to two local drives.
Bash:
% tmutil compare "`tmutil listbackups | tail -n 1`" "`tmutil listbackups | tail -n 2 | head -n 1`"
The backquotes are used by the shell to insert the result of a command, so this is actually issuing three commands — it runs tmutil listbackups twice to determine the two most recent backups, then runs tmutil compare to compare them.
 


Thank you Anton. I like having that granularity available if I want to quickly determine where to focus if having Time Machine problems. Can pair tmutil with BackupLoupe.
 


I was doing a ~600GB Time Machine backup on my 2018 Mac Mini running macOS 10.14.6. It would never complete the backup. At most it would add 10-20 GB to the total backup before quitting. I kept restarting it, but it would keep quitting.

I also had a ChronoSync backup running every hour. I finally noticed that when the ChronoSync task was running, the Time Machine backup was stopped. I tried stopping the ChronoSync task scheduler, and the Time Machine backup was able to finish.

These backups were going to different NAS devices on different computers. I've since changed the ChronoSync schedule from hourly to daily, and everything has worked fine. Anybody else noticed this? I wonder if they are both calling some single-threaded application during their backups.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
... Anybody else noticed this?
I haven't encountered that particular situation, but I blithely thought I was backing up my system to a Time Machine volume as usual for days and days... only to discover that Time Machine was not backing up to this particular Time Machine backup drive.

Fortunately for me, I never trusted Time Machine and always have parallel Carbon Copy Cloner backups (with SafetyNet enabled).

While I've used those Carbon Copy Cloner backups to restore my system after problems, I've found that LittleSnitch can be a pain after a restore, somehow losing track of its previous state.
 


I was doing a ~600GB Time Machine backup on my 2018 Mac Mini running macOS 10.14.6. It would never complete the backup. At most it would add 10-20 GB to the total backup before quitting. I kept restarting it, but it would keep quitting.

I also had a ChronoSync backup running every hour. I finally noticed that when the ChronoSync task was running, the Time Machine backup was stopped. I tried stopping the ChronoSync task scheduler, and the Time Machine backup was able to finish.

These backups were going to different NAS devices on different computers. I've since changed the ChronoSync schedule from hourly to daily, and everything has worked fine. Anybody else noticed this? I wonder if they are both calling some single-threaded application during their backups.
I have noticed that Time Machine seems to pause when certain other processes are running. Some examples are Retrospect backup, iTunes backing up my iPhone, large Finder copies, Photos uploads from my iPhone, Canon software batch processing, and I’m suspecting photoanalysisd. Whether it’s the identity of some large tasks or the nature of their work (CPU and/or I/O intensive activity) I don’t know, but Time Machine does seem to pause or slow while these processes are active.
 


I haven't encountered that particular situation, but I blithely thought I was backing up my system to a Time Machine volume as usual for days and days... only to discover that Time Machine was not backing up to this particular Time Machine backup drive.

Fortunately for me, I never trusted Time Machine and always have parallel Carbon Copy Cloner backups (with SafetyNet enabled).

While I've used those Carbon Copy Cloner backups to restore my system after problems, I've found that LittleSnitch can be a pain after a restore, somehow losing track of its previous state.
I have Carbon Copy Cloner doing a weekly full clone, along with Time Machine on the netwwork. This was one of the later Time Capsules and I replaced the internal drive with a 4TB that Apple never offered. Does anyone know the limitation of the Time Capsule? I'm thinking of doubling to 8 TB since there is a NAS drive I think would work, under $220. But anything larger was reported to give errors.
 


I have become a fiend when it comes to backups. I have an AirPort Extreme that has three USB disks hanging off of it, and I have consecutive backups to each one. Disks are cheap, rebuilding is not. I use the Extreme rather than a Time Capsule, due to the high cost of disks when Apple supplied them. The rest of the hardware is the same.

I also have a daily backup through SuperDuper running; it has saved my bacon more often than I care to recall.

There is also a cloud backup going on in case of catastrophe; it's cheap and slow, but it's there if ever needed.
 


I tried stopping the ChronoSync task scheduler, and the Time Machine backup was able to finish.
I don't trust Time Machine either. Stupidly weird UI.

My go-to is still Chronosync, an ultra reliable, constantly improved tool, And they have held true to their word on free updates, even after using it for years. In this revenue-first climate we're in, I feel guilty it's been such a valuable tool, and I only paid a pittance for it years ago. They're a no-gimmick company.
 


I have Carbon Copy Cloner doing a weekly full clone, along with Time Machine on the netwwork. This was one of the later Time Capsules and I replaced the internal drive with a 4TB that Apple never offered. Does anyone know the limitation of the Time Capsule? I'm thinking of doubling to 8 TB since there is a NAS drive I think would work, under $220. But anything larger was reported to give errors.
I tried putting a 10TB WD Red in my 4th-generation Time Capsule. It did not work, even if I formatted it as HFS+ on my Mac first. I put my 3TB WD Green drive back inside, and now it's working again.
 


I have noticed that Time Machine seems to pause when certain other processes are running. Some examples are Retrospect backup, iTunes backing up my iPhone, large Finder copies, Photos uploads from my iPhone, Canon software batch processing, and I’m suspecting photoanalysisd. Whether it’s the identity of some large tasks or the nature of their work (CPU and/or I/O intensive activity) I don’t know, but Time Machine does seem to pause or slow while these processes are active.
Time Machine backups and initial FileVault encryption are both considered low priority I/O, which is severly throttled when the I/O is to a spinning metal disk drive. We've discussed this before on MacInTouch....
 


Time Machine backups and initial FileVault encryption are both considered low priority I/O, which is severly throttled when the I/O is to a spinning metal disk drive. We've discussed this before on MacInTouch....
Does "severly throttled" make Time Machine stop? Is there a time limit in a Time Machine backup? In my case, Time Machine halted and did not resume when the ChronoSync task ended. I suppose I could set up a long Time Machine backup and try running a Chronosync task to see if halts it again. I think I have enough room on one of my NAS devices to try it.
 


I don't trust Time Machine either. Stupidly weird UI. My go-to is still Chronosync, an ultra reliable, constantly improved tool, And they have held true to their word on free updates, even after using it for years. In this revenue-first climate we're in, I feel guilty it's been such a valuable tool, and I only paid a pittance for it years ago. They're a no-gimmick company.
I like Chronosync also. I use it when I want to sync particular folders. It's easy to set up, and fast. I also use Carbon Copy Cloner but mostly for whole disk/volume backups. Time Machine is my third backup.
 


Does "severly throttled" make Time Machine stop? Is there a time limit in a Time Machine backup? In my case, Time Machine halted and did not resume when the ChronoSync task ended. I suppose I could set up a long Time Machine backup and try running a Chronosync task to see if halts it again. I think I have enough room on one of my NAS devices to try it.
Low-priority I/O means that Time Machine is preempted by other I/O, such as ChronoSync (assuming that ChronoSync isn't also low-priority). Throttled means that low-priority I/O to hard disk drives runs at a snail's pace, even if there is nothing else active on the machine at all.

But the Time Machine backup shouldn't quit. Is the Time Machine backup on the NAS? Is it losing the network connection, or is the volume being dismounted? Does The Time Machine Mechanic tell you anything useful?
 


I have Carbon Copy Cloner doing a weekly full clone, along with Time Machine on the netwwork. This was one of the later Time Capsules and I replaced the internal drive with a 4TB that Apple never offered. Does anyone know the limitation of the Time Capsule? I'm thinking of doubling to 8 TB since there is a NAS drive I think would work, under $220. But anything larger was reported to give errors.
Can you replace a hard drive in a Time Capsule, and have it 'just work'?

Is all the software in firmware? Is there anything on the drive that I need, to control either Time Machine or WiFi routing?
 


Can you replace a hard drive in a Time Capsule, and have it 'just work'?
Is all the software in firmware? Is there anything on the drive that I need, to control either Time Machine or WiFi routing?
It pretty much "just worked" each time I have done it. Formatting the disk as HFS+ beforehand is probably a good idea, but I don't think it is necessary. With that said, it is easier to plug in a large USB disk for expanded space.

ifixit.com has info on the various models that is useful for doing the upgrade. Heating up the bottom of the old models to loosen the adhesive is very effective.
 


Low-priority I/O means that Time Machine is preempted by other I/O, such as ChronoSync (assuming that ChronoSync isn't also low-priority). Throttled means that low-priority I/O to hard disk drives runs at a snail's pace, even if there is nothing else active on the machine at all.

But the Time Machine backup shouldn't quit. Is the Time Machine backup on the NAS? Is it losing the network connection, or is the volume being dismounted? Does The Time Machine Mechanic tell you anything useful?
The backups are to different RAID's on different computers. I'll setup a new test and run Time Machine Mechanic.
 


Can you replace a hard drive in a Time Capsule, and have it 'just work'?

Is all the software in firmware? Is there anything on the drive that I need, to control either Time Machine or WiFi routing?
The new hard drive has to be formatted as HFS+. You can do that either on a Mac beforehand, or you can connect to the Time Capsule using Apple's Airport Utility program and use that to format the drive.
 


Raj

Fortunately for me, I never trusted Time Machine and always have parallel Carbon Copy Cloner backups (with SafetyNet enabled).
While I've used those Carbon Copy Cloner backups to restore my system after problems, I've found that LittleSnitch can be a pain after a restore, somehow losing track of its previous state.
I wouldn't trust a Time Machine backup if my life depended on it. I use TM on all Macs but only for a quick one-off retrieval of a deleted file or folder. I have seen so many TM backups fail over the many years I worked on Macs (including my own) that I could not recommend it to anyone for use as their main backup.

Carbon Copy Cloner is the backup to use. It has never, ever once let me down. Tech support is incredible.

And I totally agree about Little Snitch being a (royal) pain after a restore. Objective Development has got to fix this problem, it's been happening for so long.
 


Can you replace a hard drive in a Time Capsule, and have it 'just work'? Is all the software in firmware? Is there anything on the drive that I need, to control either Time Machine or WiFi routing?
Yes. However, as others have posted, the format has to be HFS+ (install a new hard drive and then connect with Airport Utility and format the new drive). The hard drive doesn't have the wifi routing, as that is embedded in the Airport.

The bottom silicone bumper was cut (by me) to fit the replacement (4TB WD Black). I took pictures of the procedure and never really did anything with it! {facepalm} The initial connections are delicate, so using a spudger (black stick) is almost crucial.

Now, if you want to back up the existing Time Machine volume, or transfer it to the new drive, someone else might have to help, as I didn't do this. I just started a new backup.
 


I have not previously encountered backup software for Apple Mail that I found at all useful. I have just discovered Mail Backup X – email backup software for macOS or Windows.

It is expensive (currently discounted to $59) but has a 14-day trial period. Most people would probably be satisfied with the various free means of saving one’s email, but for me, this is such a delight to use that I decided to make a purchase after just one day!

Once set up, operation is totally automatic and in the background. There do not appear to be any user help files or a manual – I had to seek assistance from the developers just once, and help was provided very quickly.
 


I have not previously encountered backup software for Apple Mail that I found at all useful. I have just discovered Mail Backup X – email backup software for macOS or Windows.
It is expensive (currently discounted to $59) but has a 14-day trial period. ...
Interesting timing. Only a few weeks ago I was searching for an Apple Mail backup solution - more accurately for me, an archiving solution.

It seems strange to me with all the info on the net that I always find it difficult to locate specific Mac software. Mail Backup X did not come up in any of my searches. I ended up buying MailSteward. While I haven't tried Mail Backup X, they both seem to have similar functions.

In my case, I wanted to offload and archive old mails. MailSteward copied them to a FileMaker (standalone) database file. Operation was a little tricky, since the app will only copy the emails and not delete them from Apple Mail. I got around this by creating a smart folder in Mail with the same parameters as set up in MailSteward. After completion of the archive, I manually deleted the smart folder contents in Apple Mail.

This process cut the size of my Apple Mail folder in half - from over 40 GB to just over 20 GB.

Depending on one's needs, this may be another option to consider.
 


FWIW, I've been using MailSteward for well over a decade. I used the Pro version, but it was overkill for me, and switched to the SQLite version about a year ago. I have it ignore anything tagged as spam, and must say that, in all that time, it's never lost an email nor corrupted a database.
 




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