Time Machine Stuck On Preparing Backup [Fixed 100%]

Fix the issue of Time machine getting stuck while preparing for the backup process in the Mac OS system.

For a regular backup, Mac OS uses the Time machine in a convenient way which is very simple in use. The backup feature can create some problems at times. Sometimes the issues are easy to identify and solve but at some rare situation, time machine stuck in preparing backup for mac OS or the Time Machine backup attempt is failed in the system. It is important to fix the Time Machine to resume the process of backup on the Mac system. The most common issue faced by the Mac user is the time machine stuck on preparing backup in the system.

How to Fix Time Machine Stuck on Preparing Backup

Following are some short and easy tips to solve the issue of stuck time machine on the system: 

  • The Time machine backup process is time-consuming and generally, you need to be patient for the successful execution of the process in the system. 
  • Select the option of System Preferences and then go for Time Machine and come out from the current backup process. 
  • Search for the file having the extension as ‘ .inProgress’ in the Time Machine backup drive. 
  • With the Time Machine, restart the system to force the re-indexing of the Mac system. 

Why Time Machine Backup Preparation Takes Time

Several things can make the Time Machine backup preparation process longer than the usual time. The data that is being backed up in the process, plays a major role in the backup process. It is also dependent on the speed of your Mac system during the backup progress. If the process is canceled in the middle of the progress, then it may take a longer time than the expected one.

There is another reason which can we recommend at the regular backups in the system. If the system is not backed up for a long period, then the process of Time Machine can take time. 

It is highly recommended and advisable that the system should let the Time Machine run for at least some hours before trying out the fixation process for the system to fix. 

If there is no progress observed after some time, and the system’s time machine stuck on preparing backup for hours then you should try out the following steps to fix the struck Time Machine of the system. 

Steps to Fix “Preparing Backup” Issue in Time Machine for Mac

Step 1: Select the option to stop the Current Time Machine Backup. 

Before proceeding with the other steps, you must stop the Time Machine backup process in the system by the following steps: 

  • Select the Time Machine icon present on the top of the menu. 
  • Or you may select the Time Machine option from the System Preferences that is available in the Apple menu present at the menu bar of the system. 

time machine stuck on preparing backup

  • After the opening of the Time Machine panel, select the X icon to stop the backup process for the Mac system. 

time machine stuck in preparing backup for macOS

Now, after the steps performed. Wait for a few seconds to stop the backup process entirely from the system. After the backup process is stopped, following are the leftover steps that are required to be followed by the user: 

Step 2: Search for the ‘ .inProgress’ file in the list and delete the file. 

inProgress file

Now, after deleting the ‘ .inProgress’ file you need to delete the location of the file too from the backup drive which is the Time Machine drive of the system. Follow the following steps to delete the location of the file with an extension of  ‘ .inProgress’ from the backup drive: 

  • After opening the Finder window, select the Time Machine drive of your Mac system. 
  • Search for the folder named as Backups.backupd and click on it. 
  • Then select the folder which is named as your computer system. 
  • After that, find the file which ends with an extension of ‘ .inProgress’. Click on the file and delete the file. 
  • Finally, empty your trash. 

If you are facing any problem to find the file, then go to the List view of the files where the filename is saved with the format of year-month-day. 

Step 3: Restart the Mac system. 

fix Time Machine

Now, restart your system with the Time Machine Drive that is connected to it. 

Select the Apple logo that is present on the menu bar of the screen and then click restart. 

After restarting your Mac OS, the system starts the re-indexing process for the Time Machine Drive. The process of re-indexing is important as an improper re-indexing may lead the backup process to hung in between. 

To check the progress, follow the following steps: 

  • Click Command + Space key to access the spotlight. 
  • Then type any file name in the search bar. 
  • If it is still indexing, then observe the progress bar that is doing the process. 

Step 4: You may proceed with the Time Machine Backup as before you used it. 

fix Time Machine backup now

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Daisy Dine

Daisy Dine is a technical content writer with expert in the field of science & technology. She has a very good academic and professional profile . When she is not writing, she will be seen travelling around the world

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