Another dot in the blogosphere?

Monterey blues

Posted on: November 3, 2021

Last week, I replaced my almost 10-year-old Mac Mini with last year’s M1-chip model. My old Mini was struggling to play large and high-resolution videos, so the replacement was timely.

Shortly after I bought a refurbished M1 Mini, Apple released macOS Monterey and I decided to update the operating system. But that was when my woes began.

First, the wifi stopped working. I could not get online with Safari even though I could with the previous macOS, Big Sur. Other Macs in my household were on Monterey and they worked fine. I attached my new Mini to my router via a LAN cable and it was online again.

I brought the Mini to an Apple store and a representative replicated the problem. He offered to order a part to get my Mini repaired, but he also reinstalled Monterey just in case. With a fresh install, the wifi returned. I opted to take my Mini back instead of leaving it for further diagnosis and repair.

Prior to the macOS reinstall, the representative said that he was also able to get online via wifi with my Mini in safe mode. So one good thing that resulted from that visit was learning how to restart an M1 Mac in safe mode. The process is quite different from Intel-chip Macs.

I enjoyed my new Mini for a few days until the second issue surfaced. I noticed that the Time Machine backups got stuck at “Waiting to Complete First Backup” (see screenshot above). The backups seemed to occur — I could see the percentage progress ticking up and the disk space the backups occupied — but the message remained.

I restarted the Mini in safe mode, but the issue persisted. The backups occured, but Time Machine reported neither the oldest backup date nor the latest one. The “Waiting to Complete First Backup” message remained. I am not the only one affected by this [example].

My two other machines on Monterey were not similarly affected. Both are Intel Macs and have pre-existing Time Machine backups.

I still have the offer from Apple to take the machine in for repair. I am taking it in for some peace of mind.

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