GarageBand IOS iCloud Bug trashes the local original file

Just a little public safety note that I discovered, and I am not particularly angry yet, because for some reason I had made a back up before I tried to upload my file to keep a back up safe.

Creative uploads iOS GarageBand iCloud bug music

There seems to be a bug when using iCloud to backup a project file in GarageBand iOS that destroys your original local copy while also failing to create the backup.

So I use Windows PCs primarily, so I know that I cannot back up my GarageBand files directly to it. There is some evilness going on where Windows sees the song’s  .band back up file as a folder, and I have never seen a way to get around it. That means if you make a back up by having GarageBand create one for iTunes, then you have to sync with iTunes on a Mac in order to see it correctly and get it off of the iPad.

So generally I create a back up on iCloud. And this recent instance I had first copied the file that I wanted to back up inside GarageBand iOS, because I thought I might do some additional editing on it but I wanted to keep the original version safe.  So I trigger the iCloud backup and it spun for a little bit and then gave me this error message: it couldn’t back it up because it was damaged or in an incompatible format. In fact what had happened is an 8-kilobyte file was created in iCloud and it also overwrote the original project file ON THE IPAD.

If I had not made a copy, my work would have been destroyed. After some experimentation and troubleshooting — with many copies, thank you very much — I discovered that it was happening when I was uploading to the subfolder I created in iCloud for my music; it’s called garagebandmusic. No fancy spaces or anything. 

When I copied the GarageBand project file to the main folder file it uploaded successfully. At this point I am not moving it inside iCloud to the folder that I want to use, because I don’t know what the bug is. But I will be hooking my iPad up to a Mac as soon as possible and copying everything off again to have a safe back up.

If you don’t have space on your device I would suggest at the very least making a high-quality copy of your song and mailing it to yourself, or making “stems” which is exporting each track separately from the mix, by muting each track in turn and creating a full length audio file for each track individually. So tedious, and that’s how I used to have to make a backup of all my songs before the iCloud feature was added, because it let me use the tracks in something else, remix later and have some flexibility, although I did lose the ability to edit MIDI data that way, since it was converted to the final audio file.

It’s better than losing everything though.


P.S. If you are writing music for video or film, stems are terrifically useful alongside the final mix, because you can steal a chord from one section, repeat a bridge with cleaner edits, even create new interludes right in your editing software when an edit changes just a little. Imagine the flexibility you have with time in film applied to the musical layers. This is great if your composer can’t help in a time crunch, or even if  you are the composer.

I used these tricks when I made a short film for Phoenix Comicon a few years ago.  I actually wrote and recorded most of the music I used while still writing the script, before I had even shot anything. It came to me in moments of inspiration during the screenwriting and script editing,  so I composed and recorded a mini soundtrack as a suite, basically. 

In video editing, I found some lengths didn’t fit perfectly. Rather than re-record everything to fit my new desired timing, or worse, leaving timing in place on the film but forcing it to match the music despite the visual rhythms’ own desires, I could pull out pieces, or use shorter bars, vamps and stingers exactly how I wanted. And all on GarageBand iOS, with no iCloud or project backup available at the time.

P.P.S. It’s called Take Me 2 UR Leader and it was a final selection for the Film Challenge that year, not top prize or anything but a rare group. Plus I made a movie in 30 days where I got to handle everything but the acting roles (well, I did do one). I will tell you that’s great fun but collaboration is really great too.

GarageBand IOS iCloud Bug trashes the local original file was originally published on Creative Uploads

Windows 10 Virtual Driver Damnation Reincarnated

I talked about this lost partition nightmare at the end of the free Windows 10 upgrade offer, and now that computers are finally starting to catch up on the Anniversary update despite repeated attempts to force the download, it struck again last night.

After the update installed my iTunes library couldn’t find things, all things, which live on my M drive (the mapped path I created when I moved off the external drive that held the library to a multi-terabyte hard drive that was so big it required a virtual disk driver for my older BIOS to recognize it.*

Fortunately I take notes when I troubleshoot so I know what works in case I need to help someone. Well, I had to help myself and reinstall the Acronis Virtual Device driver again for Windows 10 too see what was already there. But it took two installation repair tries plus reboots before it worked.

For a few minutes I was concerned that the driver was no longer compatible, but apparently it or its settings were just overwritten or ignored again. Seagate hybrid SSD/HDD 4 Terabyte drive. You’d think a fancy new operating system wouldn’t bork a fancy newer drive. 

Ha. Anyway, it worked. Click here for details from the first time and where to find the fix.

— David

P.S. The computer that didn’t want to upgrade until I disabled the network card can’t get online now either. It did at least install the upgrade. But I think have to find an older network driver, and of course there’s no roll-back driver offered, so I need to sneaker net I guess.

* Keeping the iTunes library location drive letter and the same — and well clear of multiple partition letters forcing it to change — let me regularly upgrade my external drive by cloning the entire iTunes library to new bigger external drives without changing anything else, even network drive mappings! And I can always go back to that if needed on this or another computer, since the library files live in M:\m (for music of course) with all the contents in folders below that.

P.P.S. Sneaker net is what we called carrying a floppy disc between computers that weren’t networked, online or behaving in the years before USB drives even existed. Flash drives are still technically sneaker net whether your wearing sneakers or something else. And if you fight know what a floppy is, look it up on Alta Vista.

Windows 10 Virtual Driver Damnation Reincarnated was originally published on Creative Uploads

Virtually Damn You, Windows 10, Okay Fine

You know the Windows 10 upgrade gave you a bad day when you are typing these searches into Google:

recover unallocated partition windows 10

win 10 deleted my partition

windows 10 set partition to unallocated space

where are my itunes files and torrents and videos and family pictures!!!!! And other stuff I don’t even remember !!!!

#*@& $%0 WINDOWS 10!

I completed the upgrade (another annoying story of repeated downloads) and to try it out had opened iTunes and clicked to play some music first, and there was no sound plus a warning that iTunes couldn’t find the track, or ANY track. And so I opened Windows Explorer to find only my C and D drive, not the drive I called M for music.

(it used to be an external USB drive and I just keep mapping it to the same letter as I upgrade the space.) My  2 terabytes of “M drive” was gone, set to unallocated space in Computer Management.

I actually gasped in horror. Noooo….

Now I know Windows doesn’t lose everything when you delete, that it’s hiding there in the dark and you can usually use any number of programs to recover the files by file and folder and time and copy them back out if you haven’t done anything else to the drive, since newer files start to overwrite them. But why! I started such a program and decided to see if I could recover the partition in total.

I had bad luck trying this when I recently cloned a blank new drive over the one I really wanted to copy. Can’t restore a partition table without a backup… (unless someone knows, I still have the drives…)

So somehow I got to this site:

Which had some thread comments that weren’t quite right for me but where  user GALAXOR posted in February 2016:

“I had the exact same problem. running a Seagate HDD with 6TB, 2TB C:/ and 4TB for storage

I spent 2 weeks trying out various recovery programs, popping it into a toaster and seeing if I could pull the data off the unallocated storage onto an external, and even booting into a live USB of Lubuntu but nothing was working.

Then I tried running the seagate tool that came with it and it gave me a flag saying that it needed the Virutal Disk Driver to be installed

I installed the driver, gave the partition a letter and presto, all files and the partition were back good as new!

yup, all that effort for 2 weeks when all that happened was that the upgrade from 7 to 10 deleted a driver.

Here’s to hoping my experience will help others especially since this board was a top result when search for answers!”


This led to me to search for info on my Seagate SSD hybrid drive (which I love but have had bad block problems with, possibly because it’s oversized and hot in this PC’s tiny cramped computer case.)

st4000dx001 win10 driver

and just reading the results list and not the details I improved the search as:

seagate virtual disk driver

Which took me here:

Titled: DiscWizard Extended Capacity Manager partition is missing after updating to Windows 10

Why, yes it was and it took a terabyte of data with it! But that had a link to the driver:

“In some Windows system configurations, you need a Virtual Disk driver from Acronis installed to let True Image 2013 successfully operate a 2 TB+ drive.”

I installed that, just like I had in the dim recesses of my memory when I first installed the hard drive on Windows 7.

Well, Windows 10 forgot about it too.

Now it knows who the boss is, and I can listen to my iTunes again.

“Wait for it, wait for it.”

“Why do you assume you’re the smartest in the room? Why do you assume you’re the smartest in the room?”

Oh, Hamilton, you know….

(And you too, internet, thanks!)


P.S. TL;DR If you have a giant drive missing a partition after upgrading to Windows 10, download and install this:

because your older system may not have recognized your drive since it was more than two terabytes (even if you partitioned it to several smaller partition sizes like I had.)

P.P.S. TL;DR means too long, didn’t read. And there used to be a hilarious Tumblr on it.

Virtually Damn You, Windows 10, Okay Fine was originally published on Creative Uploads