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Michael Hannigan
Michael Hannigan, Engineer
Category: Computer Hardware
Satisfied Customers: 11184
Experience:  25+ Years Experience in Computer Hardware. MCSE, MCP, ICCP - Asus, Acer, Dell, HP, Compaq, Sony, Alienware, Lenovo.
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I use a Western Digital backup hard drive Macbook Pro. I

Customer Question

I use a Western Digital backup hard drive for my Macbook Pro. I partitioned the drive in 3 parts, one part is Time Machine backup. The backup worked fine the first few times. Now when I plug the drive in, my Mac gives the following message:OS X can’t repair the disk “Time Machine”
You can still open or copy files on the disk, but you can’t save changes to files on the disk. Back up the disk and reformat it as soon as you can.The last Time Machine backup still appears on the drive. The partition that stores all my photos is still intact. What can I do to fix this?Thanks!
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Computer Hardware
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I should also add that I don't have a ton of technical knowledge but I follow instructions well. :)Also, if part of the solution is to back up the contents of the external drive, I don't have another drive on hand to back up to. except my second MacBook (used for work), which is my company's. I can use it temporarily if I need to.
Expert:  Michael Hannigan replied 11 months ago.

Hello. My name is Michael. I can assist you with your question. In this situation, there is only really one thing you can try to do, which is to repair the backup or disk - depending on where the problem is.

You can use Disk Utility to verify your startup disk, your backup drive, and any other drives you're trying to back up. Turn off Time Machine, then connect any drives you're using as part of your backup.

  1. From the Apple menu, choose System Preferences.
  2. From the View menu, choose Time Machine.
  3. Set Time Machine to Off to disable Time Machine backups.
  4. Connect your backup drive to your Mac.
  5. Open Disk Utility located in /Applications/Utilities.
  6. In Disk Utility, locate and select your drive in the sidebar.
  7. Click Verify Disk, or click Repair Disk.

You can turn Time Machine back on after your drive is verified as ok, or repaired successfully.

If Disk Utility finds issues it can't repair, see Using Disk Utility to verify or repair disks for more information on the next steps to try. It's possible the drive might need to be reformatted, or the backup is damaged.

DO NOT do a format at this point as that will erase the drive. If it comes to that point, there may be other options (although expensive) that can be used to recover the data.

Mike