Time Machine Backup Takes Ages. Should I be Worried?

Let’s imagine that by performing a backup using the Time Machine menu, the icon “Backup in progress” is displayed on your desktop for rather long time. What do you feel? Of course, irritation.

preparing backup
Source: lifewire.com

That’s why we wrote an article, the purpose of which is to tell you what to do if the Time Machine backup takes longer.

First of all, we kindly ask you to check a sequence of backup, quantity saving, network connection speed, antivirus software and drives. Now, we are going to explain why each of these options can freeze the speed of your computer processes.

First experience

During the first backup, Time Machine saves a huge quantity of data. But even while the system is saving the information up in the background, you can confidently continue to work with the Mac.

After the first time backup is completed, Time Machine continues to work in the background, copying only the files changed since the last time. This means that subsequent actions are usually faster.

Volume of changes

The speed of backup also depends on the number of changes, files, and their volumes. In such cases, the Preparation message in the Time Machine menu is displayed longer than usual.

For example, when a disk is unavailable due to some circumstances, Time Machine cannot back up files. If the Mac is used for several days without access to its’ disk, the process will take long after the access is restored.

If a virtualization software such as Parallels or VMWare is used on the computer, this OS can create a large disk image file or another file for storing data associated with other systems.

If you recently installed new software or upgraded to macOS, it may also take longer to complete the next backup.

If the previous backup was canceled or unexpectedly interrupted, the next time, Time Machine can spend more time processing files as well.

Network connection speed

If you are backing up over a Wi-Fi network, make sure that the Internet access point or router is close enough. To get an idea of the signal strength of the wireless network, look at the Wi-Fi menu, and also check for problems with the connection.

Antivirus software

If an anti-virus software installed on your Mac, make sure that it is updated. If it interferes with the backup of the computer, try to exclude the saving drive from the virus scan. For more information, check the documentation for the antivirus utility or contact its developer.

Drives checking

Backup can be performed more slowly if there is an issue with one of the copied disks or with that one, where the copies are saved.

When using the AirPort Time Capsule, you can configure it to check the built-in disk. To do this, disconnect and then resume the AirPort Time Capsule in a short time.

When the built-in Time Capsule works, the LED on the device turns green. If there are problems, the indicator flashes amber. Open the AirPort Utility and connect the Time Capsule to get more information about the problem. If the issue persists, you may need to delete the data from the hard disk using the AirPort Utility after creating an additional backup using Time Machine and another disk.

For other drives, open the Time Machine settings and turn off Time Machine, then use Disk Utility to check the booting, external backup disks, and any other ones that are backed up. You can re-enable Time Machine after successfully checking or repairing the disks.

re-enable time machine
Source: 9to5mac.com

Now, you will not just know the reasons for freezing the backup process, but also understand your Mac better.