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Emac won't boot, how to back up data?

4930 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Nov 20, 2009 6:02 AM by patty_in_miami RSS
GlennKen Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Sep 25, 2009 10:06 AM
My Emac has been crashing a lot lately and now it won't boot, it stops at the blue screen. I went through the suggestions at and none worked. Through disk utility and fsck I get the message "Keys out of order (4, 4809)" and "The volume Macintosh HD could not be repaired." I understand this to be serious directory problems. I am willing to wipe the hard drive clean and reinstall everything, but the last time I backed up my Mac was about 3 months ago. I want to know how to back up the data currently on my hard disk when it is in this condition.

I have an 80 gig external USB hard disk that I split formatted 50 gig for Mac and 30 gig for Windows. The Mac partition got full, and that is why I had not backed up to it recently. If there is a way to reliably reformat this hard disk to all Mac and put all the data from my internal hard drive on it, I will do so. Otherwise if there is a chance not all of my current data is recoverable, I will bite the bullet and buy another external hard drive for a new backup to make sure I save as much data as possible. However, I am not clear how to do either approach with my computer in it's current condition. Any help will be appreciated.
EMac, Mac OS X (10.3.x), USB 2.0
  • cosmichobo Level 3 Level 3 (515 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 26, 2009 2:27 AM (in response to GlennKen)
    Do you have access to another Mac (with firewire)? If so, you could connect the two computers using a 6pin to 6pin firewire cable... boot the eMac in firewire mode... then try problem solve it from the other Mac.

    Alternatively... buy Disk Warrior and use its startup disk to try correct the hard drive's problem/s...
    eMac 1.25Ghz 1GB/160GB, Mac OS X (10.4.9), Repaired "bad cap" eMac
  • K.S. Level 4 Level 4 (3,690 points)
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    Sep 26, 2009 12:02 PM (in response to GlennKen)
    What version of OS 10.3 are you running? The DiskWarrior DVD apparently requires 10.3.9.

    Alsoft does have a workaround that might be useful. HERE.

    A post at the macosxhints Forum has a DiskWarrior directory repair followed by a Disk Utility repair. and the two following posts.
    eMac Combo 1GHz/1GB/60GB MacBook (white in colour), Mac OS X (10.4.11), iPS, CanoScan D646U, Canon iP1600, DSL, D-Link DI-624: iMac 333MHz
  • Király Level 6 Level 6 (9,460 points)
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    Sep 27, 2009 9:21 PM (in response to GlennKen)
    You really should get your data backed up ASAP - and before trying any disk repair utilities on it.

    Get a firewire hard drive. Boot up from your OS X install disc. Choose Disk Utility from the Utilities menu. Use Disk Utility's Restore tab to copy your main hard drive to your external. Your external hard drive probably will not be bootable either because the directory corruption will have been copied to it as well. But at least then if Disk Warrior cannot help, you can reformat your internal hard drive and reinstall, and then grab your data from the backup drive.
    eMac (PowerPC G4, 1.25GHz, 1.5GB RAM, USB 2.0), Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • patty_in_miami Calculating status...
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    Nov 20, 2009 6:02 AM (in response to Király)
    Hi Király
    I am having the same trouble you helped respond to here. I am freaking out about loosing my photos and music. That's all I really care about. I have an external drive that's USB, not Firewire. Can I do the same thing you suggested?
    I really hope you can help.
    Thanks in advance.
    eMac, Mac OS X (10.4.11)


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