Stuck Backup and Backup Errors
- This article is for Windows - View the Mac article
Carbonite backups may become stuck if you have an unreliable connection, problematic files are selected, or selected file paths are too long for Windows. Please reference the instructions below for further guidance.
The sections below are collapsed. Please click the section title to open/close a particular section.
Step 1: Reestablish a Connection with Carbonite
If restarting your computer does not resolve the issue, update Carbonite to the latest version. Doing so reestablishes the connection with Carbonite and adds improvements to the software.
From the target computer, follow the instructions below to install the Carbonite Safe update on your computer.
- Sign in at https://account.carbonite.com or with the button below.
- From the Computers tab, click Computer options and select Reinstall Carbonite from the dropdown menu.
- On the next page, click Download now.
The Carbonite installation file will download to the default download location on your computer.
After the Carbonite file downloads, you can use your web browser or File Explorer to open the Carbonite setup file. Choose the method that is easiest for you.
- For Google Chrome: Click the Carbonite setup file from the bottom left of the web browser.
- For Mozilla Firefox: Click Save File and open the file from the down arrow in the top right of the web browser.
- For Microsoft Edge: Click Run at the bottom of the web browser.
- For Internet Explorer: Click Run at the bottom of the web browser.
If you see a User Account Control window that says, “Do you want to allow this app to make changes to your device?” click Yes.
Agree to Terms of Service and click OK and the reinstall will complete.
After Carbonite reinstalls successfully, your backup will resume automatically.
Step 2: Deselect Unwanted Files from Your Backup
Selecting large system, program, or temporary files can cause stuck backups because the files are not always intended to be selected for backup by the Carbonite Safe computer backup.
File locations that should be removed from backup
By default, Carbonite Safe for computers automatically backs up files in C:/Users, which is the location that most if not all user created data exists. This location includes user created data within folders like the Desktop, Documents, Downloads, Music, Pictures, and Videos.
- C:/Program Files
- C:/Program Files (x86)
Note: Carbonite does not back up placeholder files, such as those created by OneDrive's File On-Demand Feature. Any data being synced with OneDrive Files On-Demand should not be selected for backup with Carbonite.
File locations that should be re-selected for backup:
Peachtree and older versions of Quicken and QuickBooks (prior to 2015) store their data in Program Files location. If you have these programs please reselect the folders below.
- C:\Program Files\Peachtree\Company
- C:\Program Files\Sage Software\Peachtree\Company
- C:\Program Files\PeachW\Company
- C:\Program Files\Quicken
- C:\Program Files\Intuit\QuickBooks
Within 72 hours of the deselecting the problematic files, Carbonite will remove the folders from the backup and hopefully resolve the stuck backup.
Step 3: Shorten Long Files Paths
Windows only allows Carbonite to select file locations which are 255 characters or less and have a folder depth of 50 folders or fewer. Files within these locations may cause Carbonite to become stuck and says that “some of your files could not be backed up due to errors”.
Below the limit (36 characters and a folder depth of 3)
Above the limit (295 characters)
Above the limit (folder depth of 51)
If you receive this alert or suspect that you have many folders within folders or long files names, you can shorten the source folder path to resolve the issue.
- Navigate through your file structure and identify any files or folders that exceed this limit.
- Copy or move the file into a folder that does not exceed 255 characters and that does not exceed a folder depth of 50.
- Delete the original folder that exceeded the limit.
After you have completed these steps, Carbonite will back up the new location (s) and hopefully resolve the stuck backup.
Step 4: Further Troubleshooting
In addition to the steps above, you can review other options to resolve a stuck backup.
Close Out of Large Files
Carbonite may be unable to back up large files that are open in use because the file is being used by the other program. In these instances, simply save and close out the file(s) and refrain from opening the files until the backup for the file completes.
Example: Microsoft Outlook’s .PST files can be large. Carbonite will attempt to make a copy of the file on Carbonite’s servers. However, if there is not enough space on your computer to allow it to do so, Carbonite will wait to back up the file when Outlook is no longer open. When Outlook closes, Carbonite will have the direct ability to back up the file and this will resolve the seemingly stuck backup problem with the large file.
Review the AppData Folder
AppData is a hidden folder located in C:\Users\User\AppData and contains application and temporary files needed by software to run properly. Files in this folder update quickly and your backup may become stuck or not complete as a result of this folder being selected for backup.
The following list contains known common programs that store their data in these locations.
|Google Chrome||C:\Users\[User Name]\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default|
|Microsoft Outlook 2007||C:\Users\[User_Name]\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook|
|Microsoft Sticky Notes (Windows 7, 8, and 10)||C:\Users\[User_Name]\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\
|Microsoft Sticky Notes (Windows 10 Anniversary Edition)||C:\Users\[User_Name]\AppData\Local\Packages\
|Mozilla Thunderbird||C:\Users\[User_Name]\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\[Profile Name]|
|Windows Live Mail (Windows 7)||C:\Users\[User_Name]\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Live Mail|
After you deselect the problematic files or folders within the AppData folder, Carbonite will remove the files and folders from the backup within 72 hours and hopefully resolve the stuck backup.
Scan and Remove Viruses
Malware and viruses may interfere with Carbonite’s ability to back up your files. To resolve this issue, scan and remove unwanted programs and viruses with your preferred anti-virus software.
Check for Hard Drive or Computer Issues
If you have exhausted all other steps, it may indicate that there are problems with your computer. These problems include, but are not limited to:
- Bad drive sectors
- File system errors
- Volume Shadow Copy Services errors (VSS)
- Mechanical failure
Running the Windows CHKDSK utility can help resolve minor issues, but temporarily prevents use of the computer and can take several hours to complete.
- Click the Window Start menu.
- Type cmd in the search bar.
- From the search results, right-click Command Prompt and select Run as an Administrator.
- In the window that appears type chkdsk /f and press Enter.
- Type y and press Enter to perform the check disk the next time the computer restarts.
Backup Overdue Emails
Carbonite will send email notices if your backup has not taken place after 14 days. Typically, these notices are reminders to restart your computer so Carbonite can continue backing up if you have not turned on your computer recently.
You can check your current backup status at any time and follow the instructions within this article if your backup doesn’t connect after restarting your computer.