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kmosx: Error (-9972)

Vienna, Austria
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VERSION 1  Published
Last Modified:  Feb 22, 2011 4:02 PM
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The following was contributed by Fumiaki Kawashima.

The error message, "Error: The underlying task reported failure on exit (-9972)" is a serious filesystem error in the Mac OS X Core Foundation. The problem can also lead to other critical errors such as "Keys Out of Order," "Invalid node structure" and/or "Invalid sibling link." The causes and scenarios vary. Troubleshooting a solution may depend upon computer configuration and whether the -9972 error is accompanied by other critical errors. This issue can also lead up to a kernel panic. If the error occurs when an external FireWire device is connected, disconnect it until you verify the device's compatibility.

Symptoms:
In most cases, you are unable to restart from Mac OS X.
 * A volume is grayed out or not mounted with or without a kernel panic.
 * A folder with a flashing question mark may appear.
 * A bad partition map may be reported.
 * A target disk mode solution may not work.
 * Most likely, Disk Utility, Norton Utilities, TechTool and DiskWarrior cannot fix the issues.
 * The high level disk format (Standard format) may be unable to perform.
 * You may be unable to re-initialize the hard drive.
 * A disk physically malfunctions in the worst case.

Example of an accompanied error message:

01. Volume check failed
02. Invalid B-tree Header
03. Invalid map node
04. Invalid extents entry
05. Invalid clump size
06. Incorrect block count file
07. Invalid node structure
08. Overlapped extent allocation
09. Keys Out of Order
10. Invalid sibling link

DiskWarrior normally fixes 1 to 6, but cannot fix errors 7 to 10 if the symptoms are very bad. There is no definite case.

Related documents:
What to Do When It Finds an Error
Technical overview of disk volume structures
Handling "overlapped extent allocation" errors reported by Disk Utility or fsck

Possible causes:
 * Kernel panics.
 * Power loss.
 * Force ungraceful shutdown.
 * Application crashes.
 * An event that disrupts the writes to disk.

Solutions:
If possible and needed, back up data before troubleshooting. Methods (4) and (5) are for Power Mac desktop computers other than G5 models. The best bet is method (4) if you encounter multiple bad errors.

1. Shutdown your computer
2. Unplug the power cord. Disconnect all third-party hardware except Apple keyboard and mouse before you start.
3. Do NOT re-install any third-party software/hardware until you completely solve the issue(s) and carefully investigate the compatibility with Mac OS X 10.3.x you install.
4. If another critical error "Invalid sibling link" is detected at any phases, disconnect and reconnect all internal power cords and data cables for hard drives and any ATAPI device. To do so, you may need to read the computer's CIP Instructions in advance. Normally, you do not need to remove third-party RAMs.

Method 1:

(1) Start up from Mac OS X 10.3.x Panther Full Install CD or DVD.

(2) Re-initialize and re-partition the hard drive. RECOMMENDATION: Select "Zero all data" option if "Invalid node structure" or "Keys Out of Order" error is detected.

If this method is of no avail, go to Method 2 or greater.

Continued in next message

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Disclaimer: Apple does not necessarily endorse any suggestions, solutions, or third-party software products that may be mentioned in the topic below. Apple encourages you to first seek a solution at Apple Support. The following links are provided as is, with no guarantee of the effectiveness or reliability of the information. Apple does not guarantee that these links will be maintained or functional at any given time. Use the information below at your own discretion.


Continued from previous message

Method 2:
If your computer can boot to OS 9.x (Macintosh: Some Computers Only Start Up in Mac OS X
)
(1) Start up in Mac OS 9.2.2 and shut down the computer.
(2) Start up from a copy of a Disk Warrior bootable CD for Mac OS 9.2.2.
(3) Run DW to fix the damage(s).

Method 3:
If your computer can boot to OS 9.x (Macintosh: Some Computers Only Start Up in Mac OS X
)
(1) Shutdown your computer
(2) Unplug the computer.
(3) Find a second ATA drive and jumper it as MASTER. Jumper the hard drive in question as SLAVE. Verify the jumper pin settings.
(4) Install Mac OS 9.2.x system on the MASTER drive, and update it to Mac OS 9.2.2.
(5) Start up from Mac OS 9.2.2. Re-initialize and re-partition the damaged hard drive with Drive Setup using the "Zero all data" option. Unplug the computer and reconfigure the jumper pin setting on the repaired drive for MASTER and the second drive for SLAVE.
(6) Restart from Mac OS X 10.3 Panther full install CD. Re-initialize and re-partition the repaired drive to install Mac OS X 10.3. Update to Mac OS X 10.3.7 via Software Update. Repair the disk permissions after each Mac OS X 10.3 installation and Mac OS X 10.3.7 update.

You may want to try starting up from Mac OS 9.2.x Full Install CD instead of from (2) to (4).

Method 4:
(1) Find a desktop computer that has an ATA controller PCI card (SCSI environment) and has two hard drive bays. This will make your damaged drive appear as a quasi-SCSI hard drive. Mac OS 9.2.2 must be pre-installed on the computer. I recommend a host computer that installs an Ultra DMA/xxx or xxx (ATA-x) interface equal to or better than the damaged drive with backwards compatible.
(2) Set the host computer's primary drive as MASTER and your damaged hard drive as SLAVE and install the damaged drive in the second drive bay of the host computer. Verify properly configured jumper pin settings in advance.
(3) Start up the host computer from Mac OS 9.2.2. Launch the "Drive Setup" utility. Re-initialize the damaged disk on the second drive using the "Low level format" option. It may take hours but less than "Zero all data" option. Note: Normally, a low level format with a quasi-SCSI drive takes much less (30 - 40%) time than an ATA configuration drive. Note that "Low level format" fixes all difficult logical damage.
(4) Put the fixed disk back in your computer's drive bay. Re-configure the jumper pin setting to MASTER before you place it into the drive bay of your computer.
(5) Restart from Mac OS X 10.3 Panther full install CD. Re-initialize and re-partition it to install Mac OS X 10.3. Update to Mac OS X 10.3.7 via Software Update. Repair the disk permissions after each Mac OS X 10.3 installation and Mac OS X 10.3.7 update.
Note that Panther's Disk Utility does not implement a "Low level format" option.

OPTION:

Purchase a known good hard drive that conforms to your computer's ATA specification. Fix the damaged hard drive some other time. Nowadays, prices of hard drives are inexpensive.

If you have access to another computer you can connect the two with a Firewire cable. Then boot your computer into Target Disk Mode. Boot the other computer normally. Your hard drive should appear on the other computer's Desktop. If the drive is accessible then you can backup your files. However, given the error message I wouldn't get your hopes up too high.

Do you want to provide feedback on this User Contributed Tip or contribute your own? If you have achieved Level 2 status, visit the User Tips Library Contributions forum for more information.

Apple does not necessarily endorse any suggestions, solutions, or third-party software products that may be mentioned in this User Tip. Apple encourages you to first seek a solution at Apple Support. Any links in this user tip are provided as is, with no guarantee of the effectiveness or reliability of the information. Apple does not guarantee that these links will be maintained or functional at any given time. Use this user tip at your own discretion.
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