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Disk Utility Cannot Check and Repair APFS Volumes, Why

Disk Utility cannot fix APFS volumes if they have mounted volumes for Time Machine backup on them. It reports that the disk cannot be unmounted and fails and suggests you reformat the disk. This is not a wise way as backups on the APFS volumes will be erased and you'll face potential data loss. Besides, the MacBook randomly disconnects and dismounts drives attached through a dock and data loss will happen if I try using Disk Utility to fix the drives.

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Connie Yang

Connie Yang

Answered on Friday, June 14, 2024

It's alright that Disk Utility won't fix APFS volumes if they have mounted Time Machine volumes on them. That's because when Disk Utility First Aid is checking and repairing the volume, it will lock it first. However, Time Machine keeps syncing files to the Time Machine backup volume, leading to the APFS volume not being locked. So, Disk Utility fails to repair the volume but alerts you to reformat it.

You can try un-mounting the Time Machine volume from Disk Utility and then run First Aid to check the unmounted APFS volumes. If Disk Utility fails to fix the unmounted APFS volume, you have no choice except to reformat it. This process will erase data on it, just as you say. To avoid data loss, you can use data recovery software like iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac to recover files from the unmountable drive first.

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