External HD Won't Wake Up

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Richard Serkes
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External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Jan 25, 2015 3:43 pm

Since I've started using a Macbook Pro I've come across a problem with my external hard drive. When hooked up to my old iMac I had SuperDuper create a bootable clone every morning at 4:00AM. But with my Macbook it isn't happening. I think what's going on is the external hard drive has gone to sleep and SuperDuper can't wake it up like it could when running on the iMac.

I've set System Preference/Energy Saver to NOT put the external drive to sleep but it sleeps anyway. And for some reason SuperDuper can't wake it up. Below is a screen shot of how I've set up the power saver options. What am I doing wrong?
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Bob Wiswell
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Bob Wiswell » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:15 pm

Taking a hint from previous posts about problems; do a restart (maybe with the external drive connected.

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Jay Cline
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Jay Cline » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:18 pm

Does the external drive unmount? Guessing there is some kind of sleep mode built into the drive hardware.

Just a thought. Have you considered having the computer shut down some time during the night using Schedule... and then scheduling a startup shortly after? That should wake up the external drive. Tell SuperDuper to start the backup after the computer is fully booted.
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Richard Serkes
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:21 pm

Bob Wiswell wrote:Taking a hint from previous posts about problems; do a restart (maybe with the external drive connected.
I've done that. I've also unmounted the external drive then turned it off. Waited 15 seconds and turned it back on.
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:28 pm

Jay Cline wrote:Does the external drive unmount? Guessing there is some kind of sleep mode built into the drive hardware.

Just a thought. Have you considered having the computer shut down some time during the night using Schedule... and then scheduling a startup shortly after? That should wake up the external drive. Tell SuperDuper to start the backup after the computer is fully booted.
Does the external drive unmount? Yes. Wait, are you asking me if it unmounts during the night and has to be manually remounted the next time I use it? No, but it does spin down and go to sleep. For some reason SuperDuper isn't waking it up.

And after my original post I remembered the schedule feature so I've set it up to "awaken" the Macbook at 3:59AM with the SuperDuper backup and clone scheduled for 4:00AM. I'll know tomorrow morning if this will do the trick. Great minds think alike.

I wonder if the issue has anything to do with the fact that the old iMac had a spinning drive and the new Macbook uses a SSD. With a SSD nothing is spinning so nothing needs to be shut down to preserve energy. Heck, it's just a thought.
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Jay Cline
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Jay Cline » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:33 pm

It might require a shutdown and startup using schedule. Some drives are a bit recalcitrant in this manner. I used to have to do the same thing with a server at work. At least this way it got a restart every day.
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Stephen Hart
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Stephen Hart » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:37 pm

There's been some chat on Macintouch about similar problems. As Jay so wisely opined, hard drives have sleep built in, so the Energy Saver settings may not have any effect. (Or affect, for that matter; Energy Saver is very flat of affect. Psychologist lingo!)

How is the external connected?
I believe there are third-party apps that can wake a hard drive. You certainly don't want the drive to run 24/7 for a once-a-day backup.

Sort of like Jay's suggestion to shut down your Mac on schedule, what if you set up a macro to unmount the drive and then remount it.

You might try to google "sleeping hard drive won't remount" and see if anything rings a bell.

Is there something about your new MacBook Pro that is preventing it from waking when SuperDuper knocks on the door?
Last edited by Stephen Hart on Sun Jan 25, 2015 8:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Richard Serkes
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:41 pm

Jay Cline wrote:It might require a shutdown and startup using schedule. Some drives are a bit recalcitrant in this manner. I used to have to do the same thing with a server at work. At least this way it got a restart every day.
If my plan doesn't work I'll give yours a try. But a complete shutdown and then restart would prohibit the use of a password, wouldn't it? If I set schedule to reboot at say 3:58 and it stopped at the password screen would SuperDuper be able to run? I'd think any scheduled activities would be in abeyance until the password was entered and the desktop appeared.
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Richard Serkes
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Jan 25, 2015 4:49 pm

Stephen Hart wrote:There's been some chat on Macintouch about similar problems. As Jay so wisely opined, hard drives have sleep built in, so the Energy Saver settings may not have any effect. (Or affect, for that matter; Energy Saver is very flat of affect. Psychologist lingo!)

How is the external connected?
I believe there are third-party apps that can wake a hard drive. You certainly don't want the drive to run 24/7 for a once-a-day backup.

Sort of Jay's suggestion to shut down your Mac on schedule, what if you set up a macro to unmount the drive and then remount it.

You might try to google "sleeping hard drive won't remount" and see if anything rings a bell.

Is there something about your new MacBook Pro that is preventing it from waking when SuperDuper knocks on the door?
The external drive is directly connected to the Macbook via a USB cable. I tried plugging it in to the Airport Extreme Router to make everything wireless but that just didn't work for Time Machine (see a different thread).

Is there something about the Macbook that is preventing it from waking when SuperDuper knocks on the door? I dunno, that's why I posted my question. And I don't know if the Macbook isn't waking up or SuperDuper isn't telling the Macbook to wake up first and then telling the external drive to wake up. I'm not sitting at my desk at 4:00AM. I guess I could do all my testing during the late afternoon so I could be in front of my Macbook to see what does or doesn't happen. But that'll be for another day.
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Jay Cline
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Re: External HD Won't Wake Up

Post by Jay Cline » Sun Jan 25, 2015 6:38 pm

Call the front desk and place a 3:58 a.m. wake up call.

If ya want to get fancy you can set up a Calendar event to open a file on that external drive in hopes that it'll wake up, perhaps a small TextEdit file. Set up the Calendar event to repeat.
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