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Some SD Backups not showing up

krs


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I'm trying to get my head around this....
I have a few backups of my Mini done with SuperDuper.

Two are on partitions on a 8TB Seagate USB 3 external that requires an external power supply and two are on a 2TB USB 3 external portable powered via the USB 3 cable.
I don't think powering makes any difference, but I thought I mention that.
In each case, the drives are partitioned into 500 MB volumes.

When I boot up the Mini holding down the option key -
with the 8 TB drive connected, only the Mac Mini internal drive shows up - neither one of the back ups do, and
with the 2TB drive (and the 8 TB drive) connected, both backups that are on the 2 TB drive show up and the internal of course. Booted from one of the back-ups, that worked fine.

All the drives, including the backups on the 8 TB drive show up on the desktop, show up when I boot into the internal.

Both drives are connected directly to a USB 3 port on the Mini, not via a hub which I thought might be the problem.

Basic question - if I check the files and folders of the backups that don't show when I boot up with the Option key (ie I assume for some reason they didn't get backed up properly and made "bootable") is there some file or folder that determines if a back up is bootable that I could look for and that might be missing?

From a practical point of view it's not an issue since the most recent back up worked fine, but I would still like to understand what might have happened.
I have been using SD and occasionally CCC for many, many years now and can't remember this ever happening before.
Both drives btw were partitioned with GUID
 
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What macOS are you running?
 

krs


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Sorry - meant to add that.
It's ElCapitan
 
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honestone33

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Seems strange. Can you "see" the bootable backups on the 8 TB drive when you boot from your Mac Mini, and select the System Preference "Startup Disk"?

Also, did you use Disk Utility (or another utility program) to check on the "health" of the 8 TB drive?

Finally, although it will most likely not make a difference, what happens if you connect the 8 TB drive to any other USB port on the Mini?
 

krs


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I checked the 8 TB drive and also the volumes on that drive.
They all check out fine.

Then, with only the 8 TB drive connected, I checked the startup disk.
All three drives show, the two backups plus the internal, but they are all dimmed out.
The lock at the bottom left is locked with the comment "Click the lock to make changes"
So I thought - strange, I don't remember a lock in the startup disk preferences, but then I haven't looked at that for years.
Maybe that is the problem - the startup disk is locked to be the internal drive only.

But then I plugged in the 2 TB external. Now all drives show up but the lock is still active.
In that case, holding the option key on boot up brought up all three drives, the internal and the two backups on the 2 TB drive.

So I'm no smarter.

I'll try changing the USB port next, but since the startup disk preference does show the two drives on the 8 TB, I don't think that will do anything
 
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krs, that is how it works. Click on the lock, enter an admin password to unlock and the grey out will go away. You can then select which drive you want as the default startup drive. When you close the window, the lock will re-lock with the new choice.
 

krs


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krs, that is how it works. Click on the lock, enter an admin password to unlock and the grey out will go away. You can then select which drive you want as the default startup drive. When you close the window, the lock will re-lock with the new choice.
Jake,
I think you misunderstood.
I only looked at the startup preferences because member honestone33 asked me to.
Normally, when you hold down the option key while booting, all connected drives with a bootable OS will show up and one can select any of them to boot up - nothing to do with what is selected in preferences.

That operation works fine for me with the 2 TB external with the two backups on it but for some reason not on the two backups on the 8 TB external.
Up till now that has always worked.

What you are describing is booting up normally, ie not with the option key held down, then the drive that is selected in preferences will be used and to change that ,one has to go through the exercise you described.

- - - Updated - - -

I'll try changing the USB port next, but since the startup disk preference does show the two drives on the 8 TB, I don't think that will do anything
Just tried that - no difference.
 
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I understand the initial problem. I posted because your discovery about SysPrefs seemed to be one of surprise.
All three drives show, the two backups plus the internal, but they are all dimmed out.
The lock at the bottom left is locked with the comment "Click the lock to make changes"
So I thought - strange, I don't remember a lock in the startup disk preferences, but then I haven't looked at that for years.
Maybe that is the problem - the startup disk is locked to be the internal drive only.

But then I plugged in the 2 TB external. Now all drives show up but the lock is still active.
But if that wasn't a surprise to you then just ignore my post.
 

krs


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I understand the initial problem. I posted because your discovery about SysPrefs seemed to be one of surprise. But if that wasn't a surprise to you then just ignore my post.
That's the trouble with posts in general.
One tries to be as detailed as possible but of course always misses something.

The lock wasn't that much of a surprise although I didn't remember that, but as I said, it has been a long time since I looked at that preference.
What was a surprise that all three boot disks were dimmed out - I remember previously that the active boot disk was not dimmed out, only the ones the Mac recognized as boot disks but were not selected.

I just checked system preferences again and now I see what I had expected before - the internal drive highlighted and the other two dimmed out.
But that still did not solve the original problem.
 
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honestone33

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krs, that is how it works. Click on the lock, enter an admin password to unlock and the grey out will go away. You can then select which drive you want as the default startup drive. When you close the window, the lock will re-lock with the new choice.
Exactly. After starting up my Mac Mini, I connected one of my external drives (SSD) with 2 bootable partitions (for each of my SuperDuper! backups), plus another non-bootable partition. When I select Startup Disk, it shows my internal SSD, and the two bootable devices on the external SSD. But as expected, the ones on the external SSD are greyed out, whereas the internal one is not. The lock icon is locked, and like MacInWin said, if I click on that icon, then enter my admin password, the two that were greyed out are no longer greyed out. Selecting one of those bootable external "drives" will restart my Mac Mini from that external partition.
 
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How much time, when you hold option, to find the startup partitions on the 8TB drive, do you allow? Could it need more time to go through the 8TB drive? Also, are both of the Startup partitions at the beginning of that drive?


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honestone33

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I checked the 8 TB drive and also the volumes on that drive.
They all check out fine.

Then, with only the 8 TB drive connected, I checked the startup disk.
All three drives show, the two backups plus the internal, but they are all dimmed out.
The lock at the bottom left is locked with the comment "Click the lock to make changes"
So I thought - strange, I don't remember a lock in the startup disk preferences, but then I haven't looked at that for years.
Maybe that is the problem - the startup disk is locked to be the internal drive only.
How long has this issue been going on?

So, the two bootable partitions on the 8 TB drive do show up via the Startup Disk Preference Pane, but not when you hold down the Option key while booting up your machine. That is definitely strange.

Just out of curiosity, after clicking on the lock icon in the Startup Disk Preference Pane and entering your admin password, are the two icons for the bootable partitions on the 8 TB drive no longer greyed out? If that's the case, and you click on one of those bootable partitions and select Restart, does the machine subsequently restart from that bootable partition?

Wonder if there is a "system problem" with those backups that is preventing the Option selection from "seeing" those partitions? You indicated that the two partitions you want to see on the 8 TB drive are each 500 gig in size. (You actually stated "In each case, the drives are partitioned into 500 MB volumes.", but I assume you mean 500 gig). What about the remaining 7 TB of space?
 
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honestone33

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How much time, when you hold option, to find the startup partitions on the 8TB drive, do you allow? Could it need more time to go through the 8TB drive? Also, are both of the Startup partitions at the beginning of that drive?


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That could be plausible, especially given that the op is using "only" 1 TB of space for the bootable partitions on that 8 TB drive.
 

krs


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Exactly. After starting up my Mac Mini, I connected one of my external drives (SSD) with 2 bootable partitions (for each of my SuperDuper! backups), plus another non-bootable partition. When I select Startup Disk, it shows my internal SSD, and the two bootable devices on the external SSD. But as expected, the ones on the external SSD are greyed out, whereas the internal one is not. The lock icon is locked, and like MacInWin said, if I click on that icon, then enter my admin password, the two that were greyed out are no longer greyed out. Selecting one of those bootable external "drives" will restart my Mac Mini from that external partition.
Did you not read my post #7 from 2 hours ago?
What you are commenting on is not my problem!
 

krs


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How much time, when you hold option, to find the startup partitions on the 8TB drive, do you allow? Could it need more time to go through the 8TB drive?
Typically I would guess about 5 seconds after the internal HD appears.
On the 2 TB external, the internal HD and the 2 externals aooear within a fraction of a second of each other.

But after your comment (which could well be the issue), I just tried it again and waited over 60 seconds.
I could hear all the drive activity - it stopped well before the 60 seconds were done, but nothing showed up on the monitor other than the internal drive.
Same as all the times before.
Just to repeat, all partitions of that 8 TB drive show up on the desktop at the same time as the other files and folders, and that all within 20 seconds or less.

Also, are both of the Startup partitions at the beginning of that drive?
I have no idea - how can I tell?
 

krs


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I'm now finding out that there is something wrong with the 8 TB external.

I ran Disk Utility earlier, both on the external and then on each volume separately.
All came back fine - no issues.

A few minutes ago when I went back into Disk Utility to see if that could answer ferrarr's last question, disk utility launched but would not bring up any drives.
I had to force quit, try it again and again - no dice.
I then tried to eject all the volumes on the 8 TB, that started (icon changed) but never completed.

So I finally shut down the whole Mac.
Rebooted and the boot would not complete - after waiting for a couple of minutes, I decided to pull the USB 3.0 cable of the 8 TB external, and the boot finished immediately.
Plugged the 8 TB USB cable back in, only 2 of the 8 TB volumes showed, then after a while the third one and even later the fourth one.
So...the 8 TB drive has some sort of problem.
 
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honestone33

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Did you not read my post #7 from 2 hours ago?
What you are commenting on is not my problem!
What are you talking about! I was making a supportive comment to post #6 made by MacInWin. How the heck did you think I was commenting on your post #7?
 
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honestone33

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I'm now finding out that there is something wrong with the 8 TB external.

I ran Disk Utility earlier, both on the external and then on each volume separately.
All came back fine - no issues.

A few minutes ago when I went back into Disk Utility to see if that could answer ferrarr's last question, disk utility launched but would not bring up any drives.
I had to force quit, try it again and again - no dice.
I then tried to eject all the volumes on the 8 TB, that started (icon changed) but never completed.

So I finally shut down the whole Mac.
Rebooted and the boot would not complete - after waiting for a couple of minutes, I decided to pull the USB 3.0 cable of the 8 TB external, and the boot finished immediately.
Plugged the 8 TB USB cable back in, only 2 of the 8 TB volumes showed, then after a while the third one and even later the fourth one.
So...the 8 TB drive has some sort of problem.
Almost afraid to comment, as you might bite my head off! If there is no critical stuff on that drive, maybe use Disk Utility to Erase, Format, and Partition the drive.
 

krs


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What are you talking about! I was making a supportive comment to post #6 made by MacInWin. How the heck did you think I was commenting on your post #7?
Sorry,
I didn't realize Jake needed a supporting post.
Normally that would be done with either +1 or just a few words.
I just didn't want this thread heading off on a tangent.
 

krs


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Almost afraid to comment, as you might bite my head off! If there is no critical stuff on that drive, maybe use Disk Utility to Erase, Format, and Partition the drive.
Don't worry about your head - I'm harmless.
Since I paid for DriveDX, I'm going to run that first to see what it says.
Besides the two backups which I can do without, the other two volumes have file and folder backups from old IDE drives that I was consolidating.
I still have the old IDE drives, but since it took a while with various adapters to get files off those drives, I will see if I can back up that info before I erase and reformat.

I never did feel really comfortable using such a large drive since an awful lot of data can get lost if it crashes and there is no other backup.
But I just couldn't resist the price at the time.
 
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