5 Replies Latest reply: Jul 8, 2013 9:05 PM by ali achbah
ali achbah Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi, I have an early 2008 iMac with 4Gbytes of RAM.  I tried to update from OS X 10.8.3 to 10.8.4 via the App Store.  Started the process and when I came back it seemed to have stalled saying it had 10 seconds to go...  Came back in the morning and no change.  Rebooted and couldn't login to any account. 

What happens is that it lets me type the password and then the cog/circle starts spining in the password box and then nothing.  Have left it going a long time >20 mins with no outcome.  I tried the wrong password and it shakes the password box.  So something is going wrong after the password is verified...


Rebooted using Command R and used the option of reinstalling OSX.  While that completed successfully (eventually!) there was no change.


Getting desperate I then did a restore to the most recent time machine backup to 10.8.3 (this took 6 or 7 hours!).  No success initially, but after trying the guest account which worked, I was able to login to the two accounts I tried (1x admin, 1x user).  Then, while trying to restore my daughter's ipod (she forgot her passcode again!) I thought I'd browse the itunes store while it downloaded the latest ios...  Things started to freeze as soon as I clicked on the store in itunes.  I noticed that time machine had started a backup which probably didn't help.  This iMac is really showing its age...  Back to the some problem with login freezing/stalling.


I've tried renaming the keychain files (for all five accounts) as suggested by Yakito who seemed to have similar problems but this didn't work. 


I'm now trying to restore to a 10.8.2 back up from March.  Hope that works to get my daughter off my back.


Any ideas of what is going on here?


(PS I had no problems updating my mid 2011 Macbook Air to 10.8.4)

iMac, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.3)
  • 1. Re: Can't login after failed update to OS X 10.8.4
    Aleksdev Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)

    Hey Ali,


    Sounds like a user specific issue. DEfinatly has soething to do with your update crashing. I personally would make a bootable mountain lion usb and do a clean install then update. Also I would try a safe boot before reinstalling the whole OS X.



  • 2. Re: Can't login after failed update to OS X 10.8.4
    Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (118,470 points)

    Please read this whole message before doing anything.

    This procedure is a diagnostic test. It’s unlikely to solve your problem. Don’t be disappointed when you find that nothing has changed after you complete it.

    The purpose of the test is to determine whether the problem is caused by third-party software that loads automatically at startup or login, or by a peripheral device.


    Disconnect all wired peripherals except those needed for the test, and remove all aftermarket expansion cards. Boot in safe mode and log in to the account with the problem. Note: If FileVault is enabled, or if a firmware password is set, or if the boot volume is a software RAID, you can’t do this. Ask for further instructions.
    Safe mode is much slower to boot and run than normal, and some things won’t work at all, including sound output andWi-Fi on certain iMacs. The next normal boot may also be somewhat slow.

    The login screen appears even if you usually log in automatically. You must know your login password in order to log in. If you’ve forgotten the password, you will need to reset it before you begin.


    Test while in safe mode. Same problem?


    After testing, reboot as usual (i.e., not in safe mode) and verify that you still have the problem. Post the results of the test.

  • 3. Re: Can't login after failed update to OS X 10.8.4
    ali achbah Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Linc,

    The restore back to 10.8.2, allowed me to login to my daughter's account.  But while the wifi connected to the router it didn't seem to have any connectivity.  So shut down, take iMac back to its normal location and plug in ethernet cable which then runs to the same wifi router...  Can't login again.


    I've tested in safe mode.  I can login to all of the accounts and don't seem to have any problems.  Restored ipod while in safe mode.  Daughter happy now.


    Restarted in normal mode, and it seems to be working now! Logged in and out several times then shut down and switched on.  Still can login.  Now (fingers crossed) this continues to work.   Should I restore back to a more recent backup or stay with the current configuration and copy missing files such as iphoto archive and emails from the most recent back up?  I am stuck with 10.8.2 forever or do I try to update to 10.8.4 again?


    I did notice one of your posts to someone else about starting in safe mode when I had restored to 10.8.3 and this allowed login in safe mode but same problem afterwards in normal mode.  So I hadn't expected this to fix the login problem.


    I think I'll restore to my most recent 10.8.3 backup as I don't want to lose too much data.


    Will post how it went.

  • 4. Re: Can't login after failed update to OS X 10.8.4
    ali achbah Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks Aleks,

    I think I'll make a bootable USB.  Sounds like something worth having seeing I have several macs.



  • 5. Re: Can't login after failed update to OS X 10.8.4
    ali achbah Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)


    The restore to the second most recent timemachine backup sort of worked (only 2 hrs older than the most recent).  My first login attemp got a little further than previously but then froze on a white/grey screen.  Rebooted into safe mode, logged in and out of each account and then rebooted and its been going ok since.  But I'm pretty wary of doing more than one thing at a time.  It did crash once with a panic attack. But otherwise fingers crossed it seems ok (ish).


    Thanks for the help.