said by kitsune:
If the drive is connected directly to the computer via USB try and see if the ignore ownership is turned on. Having that turned on will usually resolve that issue. Otherwise I would try repairing permissions on the drive.
Ignore ownership would adversely affect recovery, as files being recovered would not have the proper uid/gid. Yes?
Repair permissions on the drive ran without anything being repaired. However, afterwards, the TM started up properly on that drive. As far as I can see, all perms are as they were before, including the root-owned dirs.
It's fixed, but I don't know or understand why! Also, apparently the root ownership is correct.--
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