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How to Verify All Mounted Volumes

This tip presumes the reader is comfortable with using the command line in Terminal, including the use of commands like 'cd', 'ls', 'sudo', etc.

A workstation used for serious work will generally have at least three volumes:

  • Boot volume.
  • Master volume.
  • Time Machine.
  • Catalogs (e.g., a dedicated volume for Lightroom catalogs on a fast SSD).
  • Additional volumes such as backups.

My main Mac Pro has the following volumes:

Archive1, ArchiveP, Boot.int, BootClone, Master, MasterClone, Scratch, Work, a.Boot, b.Boot, diglloyd, tm, xfer.Archive1, xfer.ArchiveP, xfer.Boot, xfer.Master

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The issue

It’s a good idea to verify volumes regularly to check for file system damage, especially prior to making important backups. While rare, file system damage is one way to lose data.

But with two or more volumes, it can be tedious to click on each one in Apple’s Disk Utility to verify, waiting for completion.

Verifying all volumes with a command line script

It is possible to verify the file system on all mounted volumes using one command line (walk away and have some coffee, or just continue work on something else).

Save these scripts in order to run them (“verifyVolumes.sh” or similar), you’ll also need to make them executable.

Verifying all mounted volumes

This shell script collects all volume names, then verifies each in turn.

#!/bin/bash
# ©2013 DIGLLOYD INC / MacPerformanceGuide.com
#
echo "Verifying the file system on all mounted volumes..."
for volume in $(ls /Volumes | sort)
do
echo "Volume: $volume"
diskutil verifyVolume $volume
echo ""
done

Verifying specific volumes

This shell script verifies an explicit list of volumes in the volumesToVerify variable as shown. Simply modify the list of volume names to suit your own system.

#!/bin/bash
# ©2013 DIGLLOYD INC / MacPerformanceGuide.com
#
volumesToVerify="Boot Master Archive1 ArchiveP BootClone MasterClone"
echo "Verifying the file system on $volumesToVerify"
for volume in ${volumesToVerify}
do
echo "Volume: $volume"
diskutil verifyVolume $volume
echo ""
done 

Example output

Once the verify is done as per above, a glance is sufficient to see if any issues are present. In this case, there were no issues found by diskutil.

Automating the verification followed by a glance at the output is a huge time-saver.

diglloyd:~ lloyd$ verifyMountedVolumes.sh 
Verifying the file system on all mounted volumes...
Volume: Archive1
Started file system verification on disk2s4 Archive1
Checking file system
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 Archive1 appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk2s4 Archive1
Volume: ArchiveP
Started file system verification on disk2s5 ArchiveP
Checking file system
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 ArchiveP appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk2s5 ArchiveP
Volume: Boot.int
Started file system verification on disk1s2 Boot.int
Checking file system
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 Boot.int appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk1s2 Boot.int
Volume: BootClone
Started file system verification on disk2s2 BootClone
Checking file system
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 BootClone appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk2s2 BootClone
Volume: Master
Started file system verification on disk5 Master
Checking file system
Performing live verification
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 Master appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk5 Master
Volume: MasterClone
Started file system verification on disk1s3 MasterClone
Checking file system
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 MasterClone appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk1s3 MasterClone
Volume: Scratch
Started file system verification on disk10 Scratch
Checking file system
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 Scratch appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk10 Scratch
Volume: Work
Started file system verification on disk6 Work
Checking file system
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 Work appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk6 Work
Volume: a.Boot
Started file system verification on disk7s2 a.Boot
Checking file system
Performing live verification
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 a.Boot appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk7s2 a.Boot
Volume: b.Boot
Started file system verification on disk9s2 b.Boot
Checking file system
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 b.Boot appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk9s2 b.Boot
Volume: diglloyd
Unable to find disk for diglloyd
Volume: tm
Started file system verification on disk2s3 tm
Checking file system
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 tm appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk2s3 tm
Volume: xfer.Archive1
Started file system verification on disk8s7 xfer.Archive1
Checking file system
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 xfer.Archive1 appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk8s7 xfer.Archive1
Volume: xfer.ArchiveP
Started file system verification on disk8s9 xfer.ArchiveP
Checking file system
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 xfer.ArchiveP appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk8s9 xfer.ArchiveP
Volume: xfer.Boot
Started file system verification on disk8s3 xfer.Boot
Checking file system
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 xfer.Boot appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk8s3 xfer.Boot
Volume: xfer.Master
Started file system verification on disk8s5 xfer.Master
Checking file system
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 xfer.Master appears to be OK
Finished file system verification on disk8s5 xfer.Master

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