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Mike
Mike, Mac Medic
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 8976
Experience:  Over 20 years IT experience with Apple computers in publishing, marketing and design.
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I bought a refurbished Time Capsule, erased the hard drive

Customer Question

I bought a refurbished Time Capsule, erased the hard drive using Airport Utility, and set up Time Machine to back up to the Time Capsule. It tries, but I keep getting an error after awhile saying it can't complete the backup.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

You mean you setup the Time Machine to backup your Macbook right?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Correct.
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

Please go to the Apple logo at the upper left of your computer screen to About This Mac and give me this information:

  • The exact system Version (listed right under Mac OS X)
  • Processor
  • Memory
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
version: 10.11.1 (El Capitan)
processor: 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5
memory 16 Gb 1600 MHz DDR3
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

Reboot into the Recovery HD by choosing the ‘Apple‘ menu > Restart, then hold down the ‘Command’ + R’ keys on the keyboard during the start up process. When you see the Apple Logo you can let go. When the machine boots you may have to choose your language then you will see the OS X Utilities screen. Select the Disk Utility and then select Continue. Then in Disk Utility select Macintosh HD in the left column (if there are two with that name or it is named something else choose the first indented item) and then on the right select the First Aid tab then select Run.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I tried that and it backed up more than it did before, but eventually failed.
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

Try erasing the drive again but choose the Security or Option button and move it one notch to the right to secure erase.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did that, then took another look at restarting in Recovery mode. FYI - I noticed that my hard drive could not be rendered any First Aid; the First Aid button was greyed out. I quit Disk Utility, quite Recovery mode, and went to choose my disk as the startup disk. It said that the disk was encrypted, and asked for a password ***** unlock it. Did that, then went back into Disk Utility and discovered that I could use First Aid on it now. It took quite a while; the only thing I was in the details that looked like it was fixing something was "repairing file system." Having finished that, I started Time Machine backup again. It's still going, of course. But this is the first time it has been able to estimate the time to completion (21 hours) so that might be a good sign.
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

OK did you have Filevault turned on?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The backup just quit and I got the attached...
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
FileVault is on.
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

I would do a hard reset of the TC and start over:

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201945

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did that as a first resort.
Expert:  Mike replied 1 year ago.

OK I assume you got a warranty with the refurbished TC? I suggest you return it