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missing files in home directory

4412 Views 2 Replies Latest reply: Sep 18, 2009 3:59 PM by anp925 RSS
anp925 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Sep 18, 2009 12:57 AM
let me start off by saying I did not rename my home directory. I have checked the users folder, and do not see any new users, or deleted users. here is what happened.

i recently upgraded to snow leopard.
i was using the on screen keyboard, and then minimized it
when I tried to use it again, everything froze with the spinning cursor for more than 10 min.
I turned the power off. up to this point, the exact same thing had happened earlier in the day.

this time, on restart i accidentally chose the guest user instead of my own. It said 'logging in' for like 15 min, but nothing happened, and everything froze again before even logging in.
I turned off power + restarted again

when I logged in to my user, it was as if it was a new user. all preferences were gone (firefox bookmarks, keychain info etc etc). The 'documents' folder and 'downloads' folder were GONE. All files on my desktop were gone. I restarted, and now there is an EMPTY 'documents' folder.
i don't know what usually happens when a user is deleted, but it this case, while itunes and iphoto seem like new, the 'pictures' folder in my home directory is not empty. there are many folders I made with pictures in them. the movies folder is empty though, and itunes doesn't seem to have access to any of my music. but individual files i had placed in the home directory are still there (i had never placed them in folders).

this seems like the user was deleted, or the compute thinks it was. but i have read how to restore the user in that case, and every thread seems to say you need to have know where the folder with the files is.

how can I find out if 1) the files still exist somewhere on the computer, and 2) how to fix the problem if they are


Message was edited by: anp925
macbook, Mac OS X (10.6.1)
  • Topher Kessler Level 6 Level 6 (9,295 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 18, 2009 10:29 AM (in response to anp925)
    If you have a recent Time Machine backup, use that to restore the entire system to the last point where your home folder is intact. Alternatively, create a new admin user and when logged in to that account go to the "Users" directory and invoke Time Machine. Then restore the previously lost home folder so the contents are on your hard drive, and go to the Accounts preference pane. From there, you can try restoring the path of your old account to the restored home directory (right-click the account, and choose advanced--holding hte options key). Alternatively you can delete the account and recreate it with the same short name as the old home folder, which should then ask if you want to use the old folder as your account. Do this and the new account should be paired properly with the old folder, and you should be able to log in.
    PM G5 dual 2.5GHz (10.5.8), PB G4 1GHz DVI (10.5.8), MBP 17" 2.66GHz (10.6.0), Mac OS X (10.6), Computers are....yummeh!


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