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Reinstall SL - Lost Data & Documents

244 Views 9 Replies Latest reply: May 3, 2013 6:41 AM by WZZZ RSS
davek30 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
May 2, 2013 10:54 AM

Good afternoon,

 

My father has a MBP with Snow Leopard 10.6.8 installed and in the past week it became slow to the point where it was hardly usable.  The only 3rd party apps were VMFusion and Microsoft Office.  He told me that he did the software update recently after months of putting it off.  I figured that it might have been an issue with doing the software update through the apple dropdown, because I had the same issue with my MBP months back, and it went away after installing the combo update.  I ended up downloading the combo update and in the middle of the update, the comp crashed.  From that point, I could never get back to the desktop, it always got stuck on the grey screen upon bootup.

 

Next, from there, I went step by step down the fix you mac found here...https://discussions.apple.com/docs/DOC-3353

 

None of the items worked until I did #8, Reinstall OSX.  After doing so, that got me back to the desktop, however, with every click, I would get the spinning wheel of death and nothing would open.

 

Now I just restarted again and it takes me to the login screen (name and password) and my dads account has vanished?  The computer was setup as a single user.  I went into the "reset password" when booting from install CD and it shows nothing about his account either.  The only account that is listed is the System Administrator.

 

The only time I can get into the desktop is if I sign in as the System Administrator, however when I do so, it does not show any of his documents.

 

The most important thing is that I retrieve the items that were in "My Documents" as they were pretty important to his business (which is why he should have been backing up in the first place).

 

I dont get how his account has vanished along with his documents after reinstalling, from what I understood, everything should have been left untouched.  Any help anyone can provide, I am greatly appreciative.

 

Thanks,

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • CMCSK Level 6 Level 6 (10,235 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2013 1:26 PM (in response to davek30)

    The only time I can get into the desktop is if I sign in as the System Administrator, however when I do so, it does not show any of his documents.

     

    If you are signing in under your father's user name and password, you should still be able to see his files.

     

    How large is your father's hard drive and how much hard drive space does he have left?

     

    Disconnect all peripherals from your computer.

     

    Boot from your install disc & run Repair Disk from the utility menu. To use the Install Mac OS X disc, insert the disc, and restart your computer while holding down the C key as it starts up.

    Select your language.

    Once on the desktop, select Utility in the menu bar.

    Select Disk Utility.

     

    Select the disk or volume in the list of disks and volumes, and then click First Aid.

    Click Repair Disk.

    Restart your computer when done.

     

    Repair permissions after you reach the desktop-http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2963 and restart your computer.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    dancingsmilie.gif

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (11,880 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2013 3:37 PM (in response to davek30)

    Open Terminal in Utilities and copy/paste in the following, then hit return.

     

    dscl . -list /Users UniqueID

     

    Does the account name show up there? Ignore all the strange ones like root and nobody. Just look at any accounts that begin with 5 and two more digits. Should be 501 down at the bottom, if there was only one account.

  • CMCSK Level 6 Level 6 (10,235 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2013 10:37 PM (in response to davek30)

    I get the spinning wheel of death

    Troubleshoot the spinning beach ball

     

     

     

    the computer is still really slow

    Sluggish Finder - Bunch of icons on your desktop?  An overcrowded desktop slows down your Mac.<P>

    Get rid of needless Finder calculations - Open a window in Finder/View/Show View Options:  ensure "Calculate All Sizes" option is unchecked.<P><P>

     

    Internet related - It's likely that your broadband connection is the bottleneck.  You can check your speed on http://www.speedtest.net

    to see how fast your connection is.  If your web browser specifically performs slowly, quit and relaunch it.<P> 

    If browser remains sluggish, empty its cache.<P>

    Safari/Empty Cache<P>

    Firefox/Preferences - select the Network tab of the Advanced preferences and click the "Clear Now" button in the "Offline Storage" area.<P><P>

     

    Application related - Launch "Activity Monitor" - Applications/Utilities - click the CPU heading and see what float to the top.  If an application takes up a large chunk of CPU and won't let it go, it could be dragging down your Mac's performance.  Quit it by clicking the Quit Process button at the top of the Activity Monitor window.<P><P>

     

    Too little ram - max out your ram.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (11,880 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 3, 2013 4:43 AM (in response to davek30)

    The slowness and other issues may be symptoms of a failing hard drive. Open Disk Utility, select the drive and see if it says SMART Verified or not.

     

    Even if it does say verified, get the free demo of Smart Utiity to check the drive health.

     

    http://www.volitans-software.com/smart_utility.php

     

    You said you only have one account and the Terminal command you ran confirmed that. What then do you mean by logging in under System Administrator?

     

    If you are going to try to do a reinstall, you might prolong the life of the drive first by doing a zero erase. From DU>Erase>Security Options>Zero Out Data. Only one pass.Then reformat the drive, HFS Journaled/GUID. Of course, make sure you have a full backup before doing this and you should also be warned that if the drive is failing, this is not a drive to be trusted.

  • WZZZ Level 6 Level 6 (11,880 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 3, 2013 6:41 AM (in response to davek30)

    It doesn't appear to be all that difficult to replace the drive. I don't know what your model is, but this is one such replacement.

     

    http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+17-Inch+Unibody+Hard+Drive+Replacement/3 401/1

     

    Look around on the ifixit site for your model, if this isn't it.

     

    As I said, you could try reformating/zeroing the drive. But it can't be trusted.

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