OS X V10.6 Snow Leopard :: Why Can't Delete Old Backups

Jun 26, 2012

My external hard drive holds some of my older archive data, but it also doubles as my time machine backup drive. 

In an attempt to free up some space on the drive, I tried deleting some older backups. I did this by manually dragging them to the trash. 

Now the trash will not empty, even a force empty doesn't work. Here's what 've tried so far: 

1) I tried opening Time Machine prefs and turning it to 'off'.

2) Chose 'none' for 'select disc' in TM prefs, in an effort to 'disconnect' the drive from the machine.

3) Tried 'get info' on the drive and enclosed items, making everything 'read & write'

4) Tried hooking up the drive to another computer: the old backups didn't show up in the trash of that machine, but yet they did show up in the trash of the original machine once i hooked it back up.

5) Tried restarting my computer.

6) Tried force emptying the trash. 

My Mac is a 2.8GB Quad-Core Intel.  

I heard another way is to use Terminal, but the problem there is that i don't want to delete ALL the contents of the drive... I just want to delete the older backups which are now in the trash. 

Info:
PowerMac, Mac OS X (10.6.8)

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OS X V10.6 Snow Leopard :: How To Delete Old Backups From Trash

May 8, 2012

How do I delete the OLD Backups.backupdb?I can drag to Trash, but I can't empty the Trash. I get error code -8003.

Info:
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Feb 15, 2012

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My old backups on time machine are not highlighted on time machine so cannot restore them. This is either because I have restored the OS or repaired the external HD used for backups.

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OS X V10.6 Snow Leopard :: Time Machine Has Erased All Previous Backups Without Warning

Apr 14, 2012

Yesterday, I got a disk read error when starting up Windows under Parallels Desktop. After some sleuthing, I found the offending file, and was about to restore from my Time Machine backup when I decided to make sure the disk wasn't going south. I booted off a second, backup, system drive that I keep just for this purpose, and ran aDrive Genius disk scan on the main system drive. All good, only 6  bad blocks on a 1T drive. I ran this overnight, as it takes an hour or two. 

This morning, after seeing this result, I booted from the internal system drive, located the offending file again, and entered Time Machine to restore the data. What I found was that ALL of my Time Machine backup data had been deleted. The only data there was a backup from late last night, that WAS FOR THE SECONDARY DRIVE I HAD BOOTED FROM. Seemingly, Time Machine had quietly gone and killed all previous data, and started from scratch backing up my spare drive. 

There was no warning, no notice, nothing. Over a years worth of backups were gone, and my Parallels installation is now shot, since I can't fix the read problem. I'm contacting Parallels to see if there is any other remedy. You can imagine how absolutely mad I am at this. 

NOTE: 

1) I did not touch the backup drive during the boot of the second drive, or the scan test. It was not re-formatted or touched in any way (other than by system software)

2) No warning was given for the deletion

Info:
iMac (27-inch Mid 2010), Mac OS X (10.6.8)

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OS X V10.6 Snow Leopard :: Transfer Time Machine Backups Without Disk Utility

Jun 24, 2012

In order to use Lion’s encrypted (Core Storage) external drive feature, I needed to reformat an external 1TB drive with Apple Partition Map, as that works only with GPT. The only partition was HFS+J formatted and was used as Time Machine Backup, which I wanted to preserve. 

Act I:

I connected the drive to another iMac running 10.6 which happened to have enough space on the internal HD. I read this article http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5096 , which describes how to copy the BackupDB just by drag and drop. In hindsight, that was a  bad idea, I should have created a disk image like suggested elsewhere, but if Apple itself suggests it, it can’t be so bad right? 

So I just dragged the whole BackupDB to random folder on the iMac (after enabling ownership), and apparently it copied correctly the dir-hardlinks, as the resulting folder had the same size.  

It seems that the Finder activates a special dir-hardlink aware copying mode when one does this. This is also confirmed by the fact that the Finder will refuse to copy the BackupDB together with other files, you have to drag and drop the BackupDB only. 

Act II:

I reformatted the external drive as HFS+J with GPT and activated ownership.. But now, when I try to copy the BackupDB back, it continues to count indefinitely the number of files to copy! I speculate that the special dir-hardlink aware mode is not activated, but what can I do? How can I trigger it? Is there some hidden command line tool which handles this? 

The lesson I’m drawing from this is: use the method described in the article only if you copy the backupDB from your old to your new drive. 

Info:
Mac OS X (10.6.8)

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