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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive System
Just recently I ran into a problem when I tried to Verify my hard disk and when it tried to verify the catalog, it responded "Invalid sibling link." Repair Disk didn't work. I searched the web and Apple's site, and couldn't find anything useful except to buy DiskWarrior or reformat the drive. Knowing that OS X is built on Unix gave me a few clues on how to proceed. The solution is pretty simple:
  1. Boot off the OS X CD (reboot, hold C while booting).
  2. The installer will load up, go to Utilities in the menu and run Terminal.
  3. Type df and look for the drive that has your Mac system mounted---you'll have to unmount this. On my MacBook Pro, it was /dev/disk0s2.
  4. Type umount /dev/disk0s2, replacing disk0s2 with whatever disk your OS lives on.
  5. Type fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk0s2. If you umounted the wrong thing, it will complain that you can't repair a mounted drive. Go back and umount the right thing and repeat this step.
Just for fun, you might want to run another fsck_hfs on your disk (use the -f option because your drive is probably journaled). Hope this helps someone so they don't buy a program that's going to do pretty much what we did with fsck_hfs, and so they don't waste time searching for an answer to no avail. By the way, TechTool Deluxe (3.1.1) didn't find the Catalog problem for some reason (you'll have this on a CD if you have AppleCare), which is why I resorted to fsck.
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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: kaih on Feb 06, '07 01:40:23PM

An easier way to accomplish the same thing is to:
Reboot in Single-User mode (reboot holding ⌘+S)
Follow the instructions on the screen, which basically say to type:

fsck -fy

and then type "reboot" once it's done it's magic.

---
k:.



[ Reply to This | # ]
A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: sadyhr on Feb 06, '07 02:08:41PM

Hi
I might be a good idea to run the fsck command again, if it reports that there have been problems, it repaired.
/S

---
/Sebastian



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: zpjet on Feb 06, '07 11:52:48PM

and the same plus more things (cleaning caches) you can achieve just by holding Shift during boot (before wheel starts too spin).



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: jeichorst on Feb 17, '07 06:11:17PM

The fix pretty much worked for me as originally posted.

My difference was that the machine would not mount the HD at all. So, using the unmount command in terminal responded with a "could not be found".

Do not let that prevent you from running fsck_hfs -r command as it still worked for me. I seem to have lost nothing.

Also I didn't need to run terminal from install disk. You can log into either verbose mode or single user mode - restart and immediately hold down either command s or command v - to get to a command line.

Not being able to mount the drive, I could not copy my files b4 trying the fix by any traditional means. HOWEVER what I did do was load data rescue from CD and used the clone function to clone the broken hd to a fw external - for some reason it could see the drive and execute the clone. I then tried the fix on the clone first.

If you are trying this - I HIGHLY recommend doing the same just for safety sake. That way if it doesn't work, at least you're no worse off than when you started.

AND, back-up people. I was a bit lax with this for the first time in about a year and look what happened. Backing-up only counts if you are regular about it - better yet create a clone of your HD on a regular basis!

Anyway. Saved me a LOT of time. Great fix. I am indebted to the original poster!



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: wakey on Nov 27, '07 11:54:36AM

Yes! Absolutely great hint. I had a disk that I could start up in target mode, but it would not mount even using disk utililty. Trying fsck did not solve the problem, but two doses of fsck_hfs -r completely fixed the invalid sibling link problem.

Thanks so much for this marvelous hint.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: tritium147 on Feb 24, '09 04:02:52PM

I recently ran into this problem and have tried this hint along with everything in the comments and nothing seems to work.

I've tried running disk utility while booting off the disk as well as fsck -fy in single user mode. Both tries comes back with invalid sibling link while its "checking catalog file."

while in the terminal while booting in the disk if I run fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk0s2 like was mention in this hint and the following gets reported:

/dev/rdisk0s2
Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
Checking Extents Overflow file.
Checking Catalog file.
Rebuilding catalog B-tree.
The volume HDD could not be repaired.

the same error occurs if I try the same thing in single user mode as well. It seems that any method i try to repair the problem or figure out whats going wrong it can't get past the Rebuilding catalog B-tree step and stops saying the drive can't be repaired.

Any help on what else to try or explaining what is going on (if I should give up and reformat or get a new drive competely) would be appreciated.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: Bobe52ME on Mar 16, '09 07:28:07AM

Unfortunately the reported fix hasn't worked for me and I am just restoring my hard drive from Time Machine for the second time in about 4 months.

I can connect to the drive using the Target mode and another computer, but every time I try to start the MacBook Pro 15" with the problem, it makes it through about a half boot up and then shuts down.

The only advice I have, until I find something else that works, is to use Time Machine hourly and then you can restore everything the way it was just before the Sibling Link problem.

I would be interested to know if anyone has experienced this problem after installing a new, larger HD in their MacBook Pro. I replaced my 120Gig drive with a 320Gig drive about a year ago but didn't start with this problem until about 5 months ago. I run a fairly full HD, too.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: wsdr on Feb 06, '07 04:53:02PM

I was under the impression that Disk Repair ran the fsck_hfs utility. No?



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: mantrid on Feb 07, '07 07:53:48AM

Do you people really know what you are talking about?

Ok, so I was vaguely aware that fsck uses fsck_hfs to do all the work and Disk Utility uses fsck, but is everyone that has commented so far sure that the "-r" option is used? That using the "-r" option repairs "Invalid sibling link" errors seems to be the point of the hint.

At this point, this hint is rated "one star". Is it because the hint is redundant because of fsck, or is it because people only THINK it is redundant? Or is it because the hint references /dev/disk0s2 when the man page states "the raw device should always be used"? Or does "always" not really mean "always"?

I'm intrigued by the possiblity that something free and already included in OS X can repair something a commercial product can't, but would appreciate some insight. Is this a good hint or not, since the comments and ratings are saying it isn't.



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Best Hint Ever! It works! Not previous knowledge!
Authored by: Paul Burney on Feb 13, '07 05:30:09PM
I had a problem on my MacBook Pro hard drive with an invalid sibling link and catalog errors. Disk Utility repair wouldn't work, single user fsck didn't work, Disk Warrior, Tech Tool Pro and Drive Genius wouldn't repair it.

I found this hint and used it from another mac with the MBP in firewire target mode. The fsck_hfs -r command is a recursive rebuild of the catalog. I ran it once and it fixed a bunch of problems but said it couldn't fix the drive after 3 attempts. I ran it again and after the next three attempts, the drive was working again.

Thank you so much for this hint! I thought my disk was a goner when all of the professional/expensive tools didn't work.

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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: jceaser on Feb 14, '07 04:27:24AM

This did not solve my problem. Apparently there is more going on with this error then a simple catalog error.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: boudu on Mar 14, '07 04:45:04PM

restart in single user mode and do the fsck as hinted onscreen ... and if it fails to solve the problem ** do so again! **

in my case, the report first time was that it failed to repair "after 3 tries" -- but the second run sorted out the residual problems.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: dantebbutt on Apr 10, '07 12:35:04PM
Thanks for this hint, which would have worked perfectly -- except for the fact that I ran out of hard disk space while rebuilding the catalog file (at least that is my interpretation of what happened and several hours spent trying various things). I found mention that this technique only works if there is enough disk space here:
http://www.hmug.org/man/8/fsck_hfs.php

So, now I have:
(a) an unmounted HDD
(b) an unrecognisable catalog file

Can anyone recommend how I can fix the catalog sufficiently to MOUNT the HDD volume then erase some unneeded files. Once this is done, I imagine I should be able to rebuild the catalog successfully and fix the sibling link problems.

Thanks

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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: Kevriano on May 18, '07 10:31:41PM

Be VERY careful if you try this tip. It does not mention that you need to remount the drive after doing what it says.
You end up with an unmountable disc if you don't. The only way I fixed this problem was to archive and install an earlier OS(Jaguar in my case) and save all my important things from there to disc.
I then completely erased the disc and reinstalled Tiger from scratch.
Nothing else would work.
Be careful guys!



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: mattybinks on Jul 25, '07 07:57:32AM

I just had the same invalid sibling link error yesterday afternoon. After single user mode and fsck-ing myself to death, I broke down and bought diskwarrior. It worked. The first time I ran it through the rebuild alerted me about the lack of disk space issue but i went forward anyway since i had nothing to lose. It processed fine. I then quit DW and restarted it and ran it once more. It totally verified the disk and found several new minor errors that it corrected as well minus the disk space message.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: hwarchitect on Nov 30, '07 07:08:57PM

THANK YOU!!! I would bring you a bottle of my finest wine if I knew where you were! After trying to install Leopard (Mac OS 10.5) on my 12" Powerbook G4, my uncrashable mac spectacularly crashed. I backed out of installation after it told me I had to erase my hard drive in order to install, but after trying to restart, my hard drive was nowhere to be found, even when trying to find it in target disc mode with my other mac. After restarting in single-user mode and running this fix many times, I restarted (many times) and that beautiful log in screen EVENTUALLY presented itself after a few starts and stops. My advice to everyone is to read all of the previous reviews, follow any hints or instructions that Terminal gives you, and JUST KEEP AT IT. You will be rewarded!



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: markustee on Dec 02, '07 09:56:27PM

I wish it would have worked, but I tried this at least twenty times. I get the message that "the volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired".

This occurred when I had a Seagate Free Agent external HD connected via USB, and turned off the computer to change outlets to a UPS. The turnoff went fine, but when I restarted, the dreaded question mark on a file came up instead of the good 'ol apple.

There was a spark on the plug when I plugged it in - I am fearful that the spark was something really, really bad for my hard drive. The machine was off, but the UPS sparked at the plug when I plugged in the computer.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: markustee on Dec 07, '07 12:34:17AM

Well, $720 in repair bills later, this is another way to recover, even if you have unmounted your hard drive and this hint failed, as it did with me. Using another Mac computer, use the firewire connection to connect the two computers together. In this case, my excellent expert used his laptop running Leopard to connect to my iMac. First, he unplugged the Mac, pushed the start button for five seconds, and while holding it in, plugged in the Mac. This reset the (in PC it's "bios", I don't recall what he called it). Then he connected the two, and rebooted. The firewire symbol came up on my iMac, and he was able to access my hard drive from his laptop and recover all the data from it (we backed it up to a large external drive). Then he did his magic on the operating system, and recovered the drive. My operating system was screwed up in half a dozen places. We think it had something to do with the "hard drive update" that Apple sent out - it would not load correctly when I tried to run it, several times. We think it finally just ate the operating system. Don't know why.

In my case, $720 was cheap to be able to recover my data, and he did it in one day.

I'm typing this on my iMac. Cheers.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: rickp2006 on Dec 03, '07 01:54:46PM

I tried the recommended fix before even reading other's comments, and it worked. It was like a dream come true, Disk Utility failed to repair the corrupt volume and data recovery tools weren't able to recover the directory structure and only part of the data.
The drive was an external Lacie drive that belonged to a non-technical friend who was devastated. He stood to loose much of ten years of research, simply because he didn't understand the concept of redundant backups. So my hat is off to the anonymous person who submitted the article, and anyone who added additional useful information related to "invalid sibling links" repair solutions for corrupt HFS partitions. ~RickP~



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: markustee on Dec 07, '07 12:36:30AM

I paid an expert who was able to recover my drive after I tried this and failed - and my drive would not remount. See the comment under my first one - I didn't realize it would not show up here.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: chrisnwokc on Dec 29, '07 09:00:03AM
Got the same "invalid sibling link" error after Time Machine wouldn't backup to my external drive saying "disk is in read only mode". Went into Disk Utility, the "invalid sibling link" came up when trying to Verify Disk. Used Info in the Disk Utility to get Disk Identifier : disk1s1 (in my case). Then opened Terminal and ran:
chris$ fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk1s1
** /dev/rdisk1s1
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Rebuilding Catalog B-tree.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
   Incorrect block count for file fseventsd-uuid
   (It should be 1 instead of 0)
   Incorrect number of thread records
(4, 31734)
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
   Invalid directory item count
   (It should be 39 instead of 38)
   Invalid directory item count
   (It should be 37 instead of 36)
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking multi-linked directories.
** Checking volume bitmap.
   Volume Bit Map needs minor repair
** Checking volume information.
   Invalid volume free block count
   (It should be 77986023 instead of 77024057)
   Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking multi-linked directories.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
** The volume Time Machine was repaired successfully.

Went back into Disk Utility and mounted the drive. Time Machine now works fine.

iMac Intel Core 2 Duo 2 GHz
Maxtor 500GB Firewire
Time Machine:
Capacity: 465.76 GB
Available: 297.49 GB
Writable: Yes
File System: Journaled HFS+
BSD Name: disk1s1
Mount Point: /Volumes/Time Machine

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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: djb21au on Aug 07, '09 06:19:55PM

I just tried this hint (same problem - corrupted Time Machine external drive) but instead of a repaired time machine drive I got a 'segmentation fault'. Does anyone know what this means and how to repair it?

<code>....
** Checking volume bitmap.
Volume Bit Map needs minor repair
** Checking volume information.
Invalid volume file count
(It should be 48828 instead of 2)
Invalid volume directory count
(It should be 1746 instead of 2)
Invalid volume free block count
(It should be 163034431 instead of 244045199)
Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Look for links to corrupt files in DamagedFiles directory.
Segmentation fault
</code>



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: bgbevan on Jan 15, '08 12:57:59PM

After 3 years with no problems I found I could not boot OS X 10.4.9 from my hard drive. I booted from the install CD and Disk Utility said there was a problem but could not fix it. I then tried to reinstall OS X but it would not install and kept telling to try running the installer again and again. As a last resort, I ran Terminal and used the procedure suggested which is to run "fsck_hfs -r". I was a little nervous about unmounting the drive after reading some of the other comments. The first run took about 15 mins and resulted in the a message that after 3 passes, "fsck_hfs" was unable to repair the damage. I ran it again and this time it said the damage was repaired. While still booted from the CD, I ran Disk Utility and the Hard Drive where my OS X lives was mounted. I didn't remount anything and just did a restart and everything came up as normal.

So this procedure fixed my situation which was...couldn't boot up OS X even in single user mode, Disk Utility said there was an erro but couldn't fix it, the process using Terminal worked and I didn't have any problems with unmount/mount. Thanks for the tip. It worked great for my particular situationl.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: Buck Flashroy on Jan 21, '08 02:10:34PM
I was got the infamous 'Invalid Sibling Link' error, so decided to try this command. I unmounted the drive (in my case umount /dev/disk0s3), then I ran fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk0s3 but it said it couldn't repair it. I ran it again and again but everytime it said it couldn't repair it. I tried -f aswell, but still with no luck. I couldn't seem to mount the drive again either. I panicked.

BUT

Just on the off chance though, I quit terminal and restarted the computer. I ejected the CD as soon as I could (by holding down the mouse button as the computer started up until the CD ejected). Weirdly enough, the computer loaded up and was fine!!! I have no idea how long it will last, but the main thing is that I am now able to back everything up. Once everything is backed up, I'm going to carry on as normal and hope for the best. However, if it crashes again, I think I'll erase it all and start again (reinstall) safe in the knowledge that I'll have everything backed up.

[ Reply to This | # ]
A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: bgbevan on Jan 27, '08 06:27:54AM

BEWARE of using this method on an external drive. While it worked GREAT on recovering my internal ATA drive when nothing else would, use caution when dealing with an external drive.

Although my external firewire drive was working just fine, I ran Disk Utility and got the following message:

Verifying volume "PSP_7000"
Checking HFS Plus volume.
Checking Extents Overflow file.
Checking Catalog file.
hash table full (32 entries)
Error: The underlying task reported failure on exit


1 HFS volume checked
Volume needs repair

Disk Utility could not repair it so I used the "fsck_hfs -r" method in the original post. After running this disk repair sequence several times, the disk would not remount using Disk Utility. At this point, I had an unmountable disk. Disk Utility couldn't repair it, fsck_hfs couldn't repair it, Disk Warrior said it was damaged too badly and couldn't repair it so I was thinking I would have to send it out to a repair shop. As I am thinking of all my good intentions to back up 100 GB of photos, songs, and everything else digital that I own, I had one final idea. I booted up my G3 B & W in OS 9.2 Classic which I had installed way back when OS X was first introduced. The disk mounted in OS 9 and everything looked great. I ran trusty old Disk First Aid and it fixed many problems before announcing the repair was SUCCESSFUL. And on the next boot up of OS X, the external Maxtor disk mounted and everything was fine again. Hope this solution might help someone that had a scary experience like I did trying to fix something that didn't need fixing.



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success on an external drive
Authored by: jjsocha on Mar 18, '08 08:38:53AM

This fix worked beautifully for me, with only one pass needed. My 500gb Lacie external (connected with usb) got fried when 10.5 froze on me and I hard rebooted. I had no idea it would screw up the catalog...

When I repaired it, I had it connected via firewire 800. Not sure if that matters.

df would not identify the drive, but I found the id in Disk Utility by selecting the drive and getting info.

Here's the full report:

home$ fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk2s3
** /dev/rdisk2s3
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Rebuilding Catalog B-tree.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
Invalid volume file count
(It should be 296287 instead of 215286)
Invalid volume directory count
(It should be 68764 instead of 43922)
Invalid volume free block count
(It should be 4017907 instead of 8236281)
Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
** The volume xxx was repaired successfully.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: watcoh1 on Jun 03, '08 06:00:50PM

I have been having trouble with a disk on my iMac G5 (PowerPC) suddenly slowing to a crawl. DiskWarrior sat on it for six days and gave me nothing (with the "disk malfunction slowdown" message). I have tried all these solutions here, and have finally got to start up in single user mode. Using fsck -fy gives me an error on "Checking catalog file" of:
disk0s3: I/O error.
Invalid node structure
(4,300)
**Volume check failed.,
and will not get past that point.
I have been able to copy off most of my data files, but I wanted to know if there was any "next step" from here?



[ Reply to This | # ]
A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: PoinT on Jun 10, '08 06:41:44PM

my maxtor one touch got fried when PC i had it hooked blue screened ...when i hooked it back to the mac no go... wouldnt let me write to it .. maxtor tools wanted to reformat it.... disk utility said invalid sib links... and thats how i found this thread....

anyway after reading all this heres what i tried......>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

used disk utility > info to get drive id disk1 and disk1s3
opened terminal... (had to find it first never used it before)
Try one...

Last login: Tue Jun 10 17:10:53 on console
Macintosh-2:~ MyMacUserName$ fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk1s3
** /dev/rdisk1s3
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Rebuilding Catalog B-tree.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
Incorrect number of thread records
(4, 31565)
Incorrect number of thread records
(4, 31565)
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
Missing thread record (id = 760145)
Missing thread record (id = 760146)
Invalid directory item count
(It should be 237 instead of 234)
Invalid directory item count
(It should be 19 instead of 18)
Invalid volume file count
(It should be 606823 instead of 606824)
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
Volume Bit Map needs minor repair
** Checking volume information.
Invalid volume free block count
(It should be 78732544 instead of 78770764)
Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
Missing thread record (id = 760040)
Incorrect number of thread records
(4, 31565)
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
Invalid volume file count
(It should be 606823 instead of 606824)
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
** Repairing volume.
Missing directory record (id = 760040)
** Look for missing items in lost+found directory.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
Invalid volume file count
(It should be 606824 instead of 606823)
** The volume OneTouch 4 could not be repaired after 3 attempts.
Macintosh-2:~ MyMacUserName$

>>>>>>>>>>>>> after try one things degraded it wouldn't mount now.... before it least it mounted just couldnt write to it or alter anything... so tried again...


Last login: Tue Jun 10 18:05:08 on ttys000
Macintosh-2:~ mymacusername$ fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk1s3
** /dev/rdisk1s3
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Rebuilding Catalog B-tree.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
Volume Bit Map needs minor repair
** Checking volume information.
Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Non-journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
** The volume OneTouch 4 was repaired successfully.
Macintosh-2:~ mymacusername$


>>>>> Now it seems to work good as new.... moral of the story don't hook the hd to a buggy pc...

:)
thanks for the tips...



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: digitaltoast on Oct 13, '08 09:48:33AM

That is a brilliant hint - saved the day here! I was getting really peeved by the brainless fanboys who were doing everything except admitting that it was a Mac problem, even suggesting I waste $100 on DiskWarrior rather than nag Mac to fix THEIR problem with THEIR lame disk system

Anyway, top marks to you - here's the "before and after" result of your solution on my Maxtor 320Gb external drive which is partitioned into two partitions. It was the Time Machine partition which failed after a power cut. (Note: never had NTFS/FAT die apparently unrepairably on a power cut!)

Firstly:
Verifying volume "Rachel Time Machine"
Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
Detected a case-sensitive catalog.
Checking Extents Overflow file.
Checking Catalog file.
Invalid sibling link
Volume check failed.
Error: Filesystem verify or repair failed.

Then....
fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk1s3
** /dev/rdisk1s3
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Detected a case-sensitive catalog.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Rebuilding Catalog B-tree.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Detected a case-sensitive catalog.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
Incorrect number of thread records
(4, 163)
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
Invalid directory item count
(It should be 108 instead of 180)
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking multi-linked directories.
** Checking volume bitmap.
Volume Bit Map needs minor repair
** Checking volume information.
Invalid volume free block count
(It should be 49629732 instead of 49843730)
Volume Header needs minor repair
(2, 0)
** Repairing volume.
** Rechecking volume.
** Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
** Detected a case-sensitive catalog.
** Checking Extents Overflow file.
** Checking Catalog file.
** Checking multi-linked files.
** Checking Catalog hierarchy.
** Checking Extended Attributes file.
** Checking multi-linked directories.
** Checking volume bitmap.
** Checking volume information.
** The volume Time Machine was repaired successfully.


Finally:
Verifying volume "Time Machine"
Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
Detected a case-sensitive catalog.
Checking Extents Overflow file.
Checking Catalog file.
Checking multi-linked files.
Checking Catalog hierarchy.
Checking Extended Attributes file.
Checking multi-linked directories.
Checking volume bitmap.
Checking volume information.
The volume Time Machine appears to be OK.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: rhinophant on Dec 23, '08 09:57:21AM

This hint was great. I see some of the criticism. I would just ask that people use their imagination and instincts. Coupled with this hint, you should find a solution to the sibling link error.

My unique circumstances:

We have a Tiger Server that went down after a restart. It wouldn't boot into single-user or target mode: only to optimal drive. Got to Terminal with an install DVD and followed this hint, though it did not work. Ended up installing a new instance of Server on a Spare partition (not an option for all, but almost never a bad idea). Restored minimal functionality and then ran the fsck_hfs on the original boot volume. From the new server volume, it worked fine, and I was able to reboot to it and fully restore services.

For me, reinstalling the OS onto the original volume was a bad option because of all the customization we've done to the server. The back-up image we have (for some reason) wasn't working with a Disk Utility restore. Before starting new and using that image's data as a rebuild reference, I followed-up on my suspicion that the install DVD's file system had fsck_hfs a bit perplex. I don't know if that's right or not, but when I reinstalled an booted to another volume, I was able to restore the original with fsck_hfs.

Sum up: This hint is great, five stars with a recommendation that you use some savvy and realize all systems are unique and this information needs to be generalized.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: KingSmarky on Feb 03, '09 03:43:53PM

So i tried what it said in the tip and it didn't work as "df" did not show the drive.

However all I needed to do was go into Single user mode (boot with -s) and then type

fsck_hfs -r /dev/volumename

And it worked! Well not the first time but the second time! :) boots into leopard now!! THANK GOD! thank you so much :) First thing i did was get Time machine to back up, last backup was two weeks old and had some photos i hadn't gotten around to backing up yet on it!

Seriously, cheers guys, came back just to let you all know!



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: patm on Mar 05, '09 09:08:30PM

This worked for me.
My mac would not get past the grey apple background after I had installed Applejack 1.5. It would just shut down. Using applejack was no help and thinking that it might be the cause, I uninstalled it. Still no luck.
So i found this thread and went thru Terminal using fsck_hfs -r/dev etc, and this worked. I ran it twice just to be sure. I couldn't copy the text from the Terminal window unfortunately. I've saved myself the cost of DiskWarrior (though I will be buying it when I've got the $$).
Thank you to the original poster!!!

MacBook, mid 2007 model, 2.16gHz
leopard 10.5.6



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: ezineman on Apr 12, '09 05:43:57PM

I have a G5 iMac with 10.4.x which lost its HD after trying to install OSX 10.5

I tried the single user thing, fsck_hfs -r dev/disk0s3

it starts rebuilding the "catalog B-tree" and then after 10 seconds quits with a message "The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired"

Any ideas?



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: sboerup on May 18, '09 08:34:05AM

I signed up just to comment.

Out of nowhere, my MacPro refused to boot. Never having a single problem before, and having used it 6 hrs previously, I was a little puzzled with what was wrong. I removed all my drives except for the boot. That yielded nothing. I tried removing RAM sticks and nothing.

I ran across this tip and ran it. One -r pass and it fixed it. Went in to Disk Utility, and it was already mounted afterwards. Restarted and booted up just fine. Thank you SO SO much for this. I was thinking I was going to have to call AppleCare, knowing that they will not be able to assess the problem.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: lilherc on Nov 06, '09 11:54:32AM

okay after about half a day of trying to figure out what disk I'm trying to repair I figured out it's disk0s5... great!! I got excited, thinking this might actually work. UMMM-NOPE! I was fooled. now after reading through everyone's suggestions I found I'm having the exact same trouble as tritium147 had "The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired".
I tried kaih's suggestion and it still give's me the "Invalid sibling link" message followed by a "Volume Check failed"

anyone have another suggestion before I go buy DiskWarrior?



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: dpaight on Nov 09, '09 06:17:47PM

Just a quick thank you for whomever posted this hint. It just salvaged my backup drive.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: KARNEOL on Dec 19, '09 08:52:27PM

I have an external 1TB dual firewire 400 (Seagate) HD that I use as back up, using TimeMachime for my MacBookPro. All of the sudden, my HD is not mounting and DiskUtilities are giving me 'Invalid sibling link' error. I am ready to panic because this HD has ALL of my documents, audio and photos that I use for my students at High School that I am teaching! PLEASE HELP!!!
You help is greatly appreciated, Sebastian.

If I have step by step instructions, I believe I could do it.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: KARNEOL on Dec 20, '09 09:30:41AM

I am getting:
Forte:~ Sebastian$ fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk2
** /dev/rdisk2 (NO WRITE)

Any ideas what (NO WRITE) means?



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: rachelcee on Dec 22, '09 10:15:32PM

Says volume could not be repaired after 'rebuilding catalog B-Tree' :(



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: Hulp on Feb 25, '10 11:06:17AM

Anyone know a way to remount the drive after the above steps if the fsck -r didn't work?
'The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired'

Drive is now greyed out in diskutil and will not let me mount.

Thx.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: pnorman on May 21, '10 01:27:25PM

It's worth noting that after problems of this nature you may want to consider copying the data off of the drive and reformatting. In my case, this tip didn't work, and even if I do get this drive working I will never trust it again.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: ericthetutor on Aug 18, '10 03:10:48PM

this trick worked exactly as originally posted and fixed my sibling invalid problem. thank you so much i really appreciate it!!



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: mattker on Aug 18, '10 06:53:39PM

So my MBA has a failing HDD.

When I launch the OS, I get the Apple logo on a white screen with a grey progress bar at the bottom (the OS attempting to fix the drive) and then the machine hangs.

I'm able to use my Superdrive to access Disk Utilities from the MAC OS X DVD. The utilities tells me that I have "Invalid Sibling Link" and that it cannot repair the drive.

Using CMD-S I'm able to enter single user mode and try to fix using fsck (the hints above). Using those I get errors indicating other problems, including "invalid node structure" and DISK FULL ERROR (although I have 6 GB free according to other stats). No matter how often I try the tips above the fsck will not run because of the DISK FULL ERROR.

I purchased DiskWarrior and it's able to find the data on the drive, and rebuild a directory structure, however it cannot replace the directory structure. I can access preview and see the files. DiskWarrior tells me that I should copy those files to another drive.

However I can't copy those files to another drive because I have an Air - with only one USB port and it's occupied by the Superdrive running DiskWarrior. I've tried to switch out the drives at different points, but DiskWarrior just crashes or hangs or won't recognize the newly added drive. I've tried a USB splitter but in that scenario the computer won't read the superdrive.

Thoughts on how I solve my problem? If the drive is failing I'd like to replace it. I have a recent backup but there is newer information I'd still like to retrieve from the drive, or I'd like to try and repair and re-install the OS on this drive.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: grand2gz on Sep 30, '10 01:50:02PM

This actually worked for me (so far). I found the comments here helpful, in addition to the original post, so i thought I'd leave one of my own.

I have a G5 (dual) and powerbook G4 (both older machines) running OS X 10.4.1.1.

I have no idea what exactly caused it, but last night, both machines crashed around the same time. When I rebooted I'd get a kernel panic within seconds of the desktop launch, time and again, on both machines!!

I ran fsck through single user mode and it said repairs were made, but the kernel panic aka "gray screen of death" kept coming back. I eventually got the laptop stable but not the G5. I found this post and decided to give it a try. I booted the G5 from the laptop (in target mode). I then used disk utility to unmount the main hard drive running my OS on the G5. I couldn't do it through terminal for some reason, but after unmounting in disk utility I could then go back into terminal and run fsck_hps -r on it. It made some repairs. I then ran fsck_hps -f (as suggested) and it confirmed said repairs. I went back to Disk Utility, ran verify disk and all seemed well. I repeated the process for every disk/partition on my desktop machine before rebooting. I'm back in business! Thanks to all for the help.



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: irenechan on Oct 12, '10 03:08:32PM

Thanks sooooo much for the anonymous initial post on the invalid sibling link fix!!! It worked on my external Seagate - i had to run the Terminal command twice but it worked like a charm. You've saved me hours of anxiety and work!!! Not to mention at least 50 bucks. Was about to buy Diskwarrior when I found your fix.



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Thank you
Authored by: WildernessIT on Feb 24, '11 02:22:31PM

to the OP for posting this. I signed up to give a thanks

We have an iMac that refused to boot, hung at the spinning wheel/grey screen.

I tried several "fixes" that I was able to find and nothing was working; tried for two full days. The computer had new data not yet backed up to time capsule and mobileMe, so we needed it back....

Ran df
umount /dev/disk0s2
fsck_hfs -r /dev/disk0s2 (ran this well over two dozen times as each time it gave the "FAILED..." error. After running it a few times, I would let it reboot and try to load. If it wouldnt load, I would enter Single User Mode and run it some more)
Also ran fsck_hfs -f /dev/disk0s2

At some point, even though I was still getting the same errors after running the above commands, errors of invalid sibling link, FAILED, and even though it said it was modified - I would reboot from time to time - and then one time it booted back up into OSX!

So now we are backing it all up

I have the feeling the problem occurred when something happened during a time machine backup. It appears to have been looking for a network link, at some point.

But I was near shipping it to Apple. The Disk was "greyed out" in Disk Utility when booting into the CD and opening DU. Nothing in DU worked when I ran it. many other recommended commands did not work, either.

So this tip goes into the reference file! Thank you for posting it



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: tlthimm on Mar 27, '11 12:16:10PM

I need help - I am fixing a friend's G4 running 10.4.1:
For some reason she has 3 volumes - Mary 1 and Mary 2 are under the 128 GB Maxtor. The third volume, Mac HD, is under the 17 GB Seagate. I was able to repair Mary 1 using Disk Utility. Mary 2 gets a cannot continue message, but has nothing on it so I would like to remove this volume.
Mac HD is getting the sibling link error and when I run through Terminal using the hints, the unmount command says command not found. I tried the -r fsck command and it says it cannot repair volume when it is mounted with write access. I then try the -f fsck command and it gives the sibling link error again. Does anyone have any ideas, tips, or suggestions?



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A possible fix for invalid sibling links on a hard drive
Authored by: mugginsoft on Nov 14, '11 07:58:00AM

This is an ancillary note relevant to the topic as a whole.

A drive failed on an OS X 10.6 machine and all attempts at resurrection and mounting failed. Hence we needed to revert to target mode and connected the failed machine to an OS X 10.7 machine.

The point to note is that the firewire target mode screen was displayed but the failed drive was not initially visible on the OS X 10.7 machine. After some minutes however a window appeared to inform us that the drive could not be repaired but that files could be accessed. I imagine that fsck was being run on the target mode drive prior to it being displayed in the Finder.

So the point is to be patient when connecting failed drives in target mode.




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fsck success!
Authored by: kim.h.patton on Sep 08, '12 12:30:42AM

THANK YOU. My new (and apparently defective) Seagate Free Agent external hard drive froze my computer several times when I tried to make use of Time Machine, even though Seagate claims it works on OS X. So I went to Disk Utility and it couldn't verify my Macbook's hard drive, let alone repair it. Instead, it gave me the "invalid sibling link" error. I'm not entirely helpless with computers, but I definitely had no idea what to do with this. My computer was freezing every time I tried to click anything, so I borrowed my friend's computer to see if this was something I could fix for myself--it seemed ridiculous to pay for a program or someone to fix something that was caused by a third-party product. The ironic thing was that I got the hard drive to start doing regular backups with Time Machine, so I could (obviously) avoid the problem of losing files and other data, and by now I couldn't access anything at all.

It had gotten to the point that I couldn't even boot up the computer when I came across this hint. I was initially intimidated because I haven't done anything with the Command Line since I was using a PC (years ago), and I didn't want to mess the system up further. I tried one of the suggestions in the comments first (restart-->cmd+s-->fsck -fy-->reboot) because it seemed I was less likely to do any harm. No luck--just the same "could not repair hard drive." Luckily in doing this I found my hard drive to have the same designation, disk0s2, as in the original post; that was the part that initially intimidated me because I didn't even know how to go about finding that. So I rebooted into the Command Line again, and tried the original hint, initially without success. I tried many variations on the same fsck commands (-r, -s, and countless invalid commands because I initially had a lot of trouble unmounting the disk), still without luck, and started pricing Disk Warrior. Ouch. I made one last-ditch effort on the Command Line, and after finding an alarming amount of errors, it worked!

All told, I was at it for an hour or more, so KEEP TRYING. I can't even count how many times I mounted and unmounted the drive, giving it variations on the same few commands, and rebooting to see if it worked. Just keep at it. Thank you so much for this money-and-time-saving tip!



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