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#36249 - 10/04/15 12:09 PM Time Machine Not Launching Automatically
joemikeb Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Time Machine backups are not reliably launching automatically. If they are initiated manually they will run and sometimes after that will continue to run regularly every hour, at least for some period of time. However if the system sleeps Time Machine backups do not run again until they are once again manually initiated. So far I have tried…
  • Setting the system to "never sleep"
  • Setting the system to sleep after a period of time
  • Scanned the logs and found no indication of any problem initiating Backupd
  • On a suggestion from Apple Developer support removed the automatic Adobe Flash updater
  • Removed all traces of Adobe Flash from the system
  • Booted from a test account and let the system run to see if it would backup
  • Disabled Checkmate testing
  • Changed to an alternative Time Machine backup device
  • Scratched my head over this until I have a bald spot
  • Verfied Time Machine is working normally on all the other Macs arend the house that are running the same version of El Capitan
  • Gone through every setting I can think of or that I can find in MacPilot and TinkerTool System that might be related.
  • Scratched my head some more

I am throwing in the towel before I go completely bald and asking for suggestions. Any ideas?


Edited by joemikeb (10/04/15 12:11 PM)
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#36254 - 10/04/15 02:35 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: joemikeb]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Any point to trashing/reinstalling the app, itself?
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#36256 - 10/04/15 03:41 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: joemikeb]
pbGuy Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon
James Pond has his Time Machine FAQ site, and it might provide you some hints... Number 13 might be a start.

Pondini's Time Machine FAQ

The site is getting a bit dated, but I still think it's a reasonable reference.
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#36258 - 10/04/15 04:07 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: artie505]
joemikeb Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: artie505
Any point to trashing/reinstalling the app, itself?

Given Time Machine is embedded in El Capitan and not available as a stand alone application that its tricky to pull off.
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#36259 - 10/04/15 04:11 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: pbGuy]
joemikeb Offline

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Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: pbGuy
James Pond has his Time Machine FAQ site, and it might provide you some hints... Number 13 might be a start.

Thanks for the suggestion but I have already tried that to no avail and as you said the site is pretty dated.
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#36260 - 10/04/15 04:22 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: pbGuy]
alternaut Offline

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Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: pbGuy
James Pond has his Time Machine FAQ site, and it might provide you some hints...
The site is getting a bit dated […]

The site is getting ‘a bit dated’ because Pond hasn’t been able to update it since he died about two years ago. More importantly, the pondini.org domain will expire next month. Fortunately, the entire site is rather small (~41MB) and easy to grab for local use, should you be so inclined. In addition, a copy is now available in the Web Archive.
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#36261 - 10/04/15 05:33 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: joemikeb]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
Originally Posted By: artie505
Any point to trashing/reinstalling the app, itself?

Given Time Machine is embedded in El Capitan and not available as a stand alone application that its tricky to pull off.

Guess I can't argue, but please clarify embedded.

Thanks.
_________________________
The new Great Equalizer is the SEND button.

In Memory Of Harv: Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. ~Voltaire

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#36263 - 10/05/15 12:09 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: artie505]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Originally Posted By: artie505
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
Originally Posted By: artie505
Any point to trashing/reinstalling the app, itself?

Given Time Machine is embedded in El Capitan and not available as a stand alone application that [it's] tricky to pull off.

Guess I can't argue, but please clarify embedded. Thanks.

In this case, as with many other OS applications (such as more recent versions of Safari), TM is integrated into the OS in such a way as to be difficult, if not impossible, to extract and manipulate as a separate application (such as TinkerTool or iTunes).

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#36264 - 10/05/15 12:12 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: grelber]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Do you know if Time Machine is different from the Apple apps in Yosemite that I was able to trash only while logged in as root (Time Machine included, if I remember correctly), or has it actually got its hooks sunk into OS X like Safari?


Edited by artie505 (10/05/15 12:19 AM)
Edit Reason: More better
_________________________
The new Great Equalizer is the SEND button.

In Memory Of Harv: Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. ~Voltaire

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#36265 - 10/05/15 12:19 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: artie505]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Originally Posted By: artie505
Does that differ from the Apple apps in Yosemite that I was able to trash while logged in as root, or is it something altogether different?

That's waaay beyond my skill set. I'm still plugging along with Lion and have zero familiarity with newer versions of OS X. And I likely will never try anything logged in as root (which I understand not in the least).

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#36293 - 10/06/15 06:26 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: joemikeb]
MarkG Offline


Registered: 08/06/09
Pacifst (Install individual files from .pkg installers and more.) may allow you to install Time Machine again

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#36296 - 10/06/15 08:35 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: artie505]
joemikeb Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: artie505
Do you know if Time Machine is different from the Apple apps in Yosemite that I was able to trash only while logged in as root (Time Machine included, if I remember correctly), or has it actually got its hooks sunk into OS X like Safari?

The Time Machine app is little more than a GUI interface for the Unix command backupd which actually performs the backup and launchctl and launchd which initiate the backup. Deleting the Time Machine App would require deleting nix commands used in many places through out OS X.

Since the Time Machine backups work correctly when manually initiated and sometimes a few times after that I assume (I know, I know — any time you AssUMe there is a substantial risk of error) but I still assume backupd is working according to specs. The problem would appear to be associated with launchctl or launchd or something interfering with their operation although I am not finding any identifiable errors or problems in the log files.

I am beginning a Binary search process of removing third party apps etc. that run daemons or launch agents and execute on a time schedule to see if I can identify a problem caused by one of them. I haven't needed to do this in many years and I had forgotten what a long tedious process it is. I am going to be really mad (that emoji will have to suffice for expressing my emotions — the words I wanted to use are not suitable for a family audience) if I don't find a culprit at the end of the process.

I have considered erasing and reinstalling everything from scratch but that is too long and tedious a process to contemplate — for the moment.
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#36299 - 10/06/15 10:08 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: joemikeb]
Virtual1 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Iowa
probably not what you wanted to hear... but time machine has been quite a nightmare for me on several occasions. I have a stack of time machine backup drives, set aside for the numerous times when time machine simply stopped working. Either automatic backups or ALL backups stopped working. Hours (approaching 20 in total I would wager) spent on the phone with Apple, trying all manner of resets, fruitless. "searching for backup..." or "preparing to backup" are where I usually get stuck. Sits there like that for days. No one at Apple can tell me why. Time Machine's logging is next to non-existant, there are NO useful logs to look at to see what it's major malfunction is when it's stuck trying to start a backup.

It's been my experience that if (when) time machine breaks, it breaks hard and all you can do is format the drive or shelve it and get another one. If you have a time machine that's not wanting to run backups for some reason, and manage to recover it without losing your backup history, count yourself lucky.

At the moment, my time machine is backing up normally. I really have no idea how long it will last. Owell, hard drives are cheap. I really don't mind that much at this point to just grab another one from my pile and make a new backup. I HAVE needed to go back to the stack a few times to pull out a file from a broken backup (they always are accessible, just can't be added to) so it's not really an inconvenience.

My mom's time machine backup went down in exactly the same manner and also required a nuke to get going again. This was not good though, as it had just stopped backing up a few months before they needed it. (iPhoto library somehow got trashed...) So there was minor data loss associated with the problem. Luckily I had an up-to-date offsite mirror backup running for her, and was able to upload it back (over the course of five days) before nuking the time machine drive and restarting TM.

She dodged a bullet - if she had not called me immediately in despiration the afternoon the library was deleted, it would have been gone for good, erased off the offsite backup that evening when it ran to update the mirror, and she would have had to settle for two months of lost photos.

Needless to say, I trust my rsync scripts a lot more than time machine, although its incremental backup handiness is difficult to argue against.
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#36302 - 10/06/15 11:38 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: Virtual1]
jchuzi Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: New York State
That makes me glad that I have a SuperDuper backup in addition to Time Machine!
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OS 10.14.4, iMac Retina 5K 27-inch, late 2014, 3.5 GHz Intel Core i5, 1 TB fusion drive, 16 GB RAM, Epson SureColor P600, Photoshop CC, Lightroom CC, MS Office 365

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#36303 - 10/07/15 04:40 AM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: jchuzi]
Virtual1 Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Iowa
Originally Posted By: jchuzi
That makes me glad that I have a SuperDuper backup in addition to Time Machine!

And that makes prefect sense. I've heard a saying more than once, "count your backup drives. subtract one. that's how many backups you really have".

(and a mirror is only half a backup - anything that doesn't do incremental is not backing up anything you happen to delete by accident, because it will just delete it itself shortly thereafter)
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#36320 - 10/07/15 02:25 PM Re: Time Machine Not Launching Automatically [Re: Virtual1]
joemikeb Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
I may hold out for a write once, read mostly yobibyte SSD in a mirrored array. That way every incremental change will always be on the drive grin
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