Previous 1 2 3 4 Next 45 Replies Latest reply: Aug 7, 2013 4:15 AM by Nicolebo Branched to a new discussion.
MLB2 Level 1 (0 points)

A few days ago I upgraded from Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion.  Long story short, I hate it and want to go back to Snow Leopard.  I don't even care about getting my $20 back.  I just want my machine the way it was before I installed this disaster.  I tried using Time Machine to restore to a previous date, that doesn't work (can't even click on the "Restore" button - nothing happens when I do).  I tried re-installing from the Snow Leopard install disk.  That doesn't work either.  Is there an easy-ish way to do this?  I don't want to have to back up and then erase my whole hard drive, which is what I'm thinking I may have to do.  Is there a better/easier/faster way?  Is it even possible to use the SL installation disk twice??

iMac (20-inch Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • ncwipod Level 1 (20 points)

    If the Snow Lepard install disk didn't work I'm not sure you be able to do it.  I would give Apple a call and see if they will help you.  I think they will since you just bought Moutain Lion from them.  Sorry I couldn't help any more. Good luck!

  • BDAqua Level 10 (122,252 points)

    No easy way, your only choice without a bootable clone is some install 10.6 again, might require erasing the Disk, then Install Lion again, them pray your backup will restore your info properly.


    Disappointing to see the direction our OS has taken, isnt it!?

  • MLB2 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well I called Apple, they told me what you both did.  Had to wipe my drive clean, install again and restore a previous (pre-Mountain Lion) version.  I'm all good now.  A $20 lesson learned.  When it's not broken, don't try to fix it!  I will wait until there is a new upgrade that I can trust!!

  • Artificia Level 1 (0 points)

    I need to go back from Mountain Lion to Snow Leopard too, so I am glad you asked the question! Being a Mac newby, I need to ask: How do I wipe the drive clean please?


    I have my Snow Leopard disk. I tried to install from that but it gave me an error along the lines of the installer version not working now.

  • ncwipod Level 1 (20 points)

    1. Back up all your data!

    2. Sutdown your computer

    3. Reboot the Mac and hold down Command+R

    4. Select “Recovery HD” at the boot menu

    5. At the Mac OS X Utilities screen, select “Disk Utility”

    6. Then select the harddrive you want to deleate

    7. Select the erase tab and click the erase button

    8. Then one of the options next to the apple logo at the top should take you back to Recovery HD

    9. Once there you should have an option to install a new OS

    10. It will guide you through the rest


    Does that help?

  • MLB2 Level 1 (0 points)

    There is another way, described in this article:

    Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard: How to Erase and Install


    It was actually even simpler than what they stated when I did it.  It is a little scary to erase your hard drive.  Make sure everything is backed up externally before you do it.  My machine is working much better now that I gave Mountain Lion the boot!

  • Kirk Rheinlander Level 1 (0 points)

    Recovery HD did not exist until Lion - this question was a downgrade (feature upgrade) to Snow Leopard, so as to recover the Safari RSS capabilities, email a URL, SAVE AS, non-MS Windows type copy file, gain back web server conttrol panel, eliminate brain dead full screen (for Windows users that are unable to assimilate more than one thing at a time), restore 3 pane address book (fixed in ML, broken in Lion) - the list could fill a book with what they took away, which is more than they added, dumbing down the OS - the consumerization of OS X, moving it to dummy status.


    Ever since LION, the venerable Apple Human Interface Guidlines - the bible that kept OS X operating consistently for users - has been trashed, with everything from allowing computer control of cursor, to inconsistent user interface elements, to garish colors in iCal, and Address Book, to removal of color from Finder sidebars. OS X has become almost the nightmare of Windows. 


    The biggest pain is the changes to email in Lion and now ML, creating file structures and data formats that are incompatible with Snow Leopard. The conversation of email back (assuming that you have used email a bit since Snow Leopard), is not an easy path.  Emailchemy ( is a $30 tool that can handle the downgrade, or moving to another email app altogether.


    Steve, you are sorely missed. Apparently no one left at Apple has a clue about what made Apple fanatism what it was.

  • ariadine Level 1 (0 points)

    I prefer a thousand times one SLOW Leopard than a Tiny CAT from the moutains...

  • phathands Level 1 (0 points)

    Any more feedback since your downgrade?  Considering doing this myself.  Mountain Lion is better than Lion as far as speed, but I really hate the encroaching of iOS onto Macs.  Hate to say it, but Mac may have peaked with Snow Leopard. 


    I understand backing up basic things like documents and pics, but how did you get your playlists and itunes stuff to transfer over?  I have Time Machine and I understand you can restore individual programs using that.  Can I restore a single program, settings, iphone apps, and data from a Time Machine back up of iTunes made during Mountain Lion era on my system once I have Snow Leopard installed? 


    Thank you all

  • SEUK Level 1 (0 points)

    I've just downgraded one of my two iMacs this weekend. I've a iMac 5.1 and a 12.2. Short story is that the 5.1 was never very stable running Lion and seems to be much happier now. Ok, involved erasing the hard disk, but as it's mainly a computer the kids use backing and reinstalling the data wasn't too ownerous. I've imported the Andromeda Galaxy desktop 'cause I prefer that to the standard Snow Leopard version.


    So, all well now – kids happy again, and the coloured icons in the Finder sidebars are very welcome again. I really don't understand why Apple ever went to the dull grey ones in Lion. Love to change this: anyone remember the days of "ResEdit"?

  • Jonathanmoore649 Level 1 (0 points)

    Also found out you can't use the Mountain Lion Disk Utility you need to use the one off the Snow Leopard DVD to erase the HDD before it will install

  • ESym Level 1 (0 points)

    I am in the exact same place as you were: upgraded from Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion and want to go back. I am comfortable with the idea of erasing my disk. I did the upgrade so I could be able to use iCloud, but I realized that the cloud service is not that good to refrain me from downgrading. Bad stuff surpass by far the good stuff in Mountain Lion in my opinion.


    However, I was wondering if anyone knows what happens to my iPad data if I try to sync it with a "brand new" iTunes in my downgraded OS. I mean, will I lose my iPad data or there is a way to keep it after the downgrade?


    Thanks a lot.

  • phathands Level 1 (0 points)

    I will give you the information I never had (Interview with the Vampire reference).  I found this deep on some other forum. 


    What you do is before you reformat, sync and back up all your i Devices (iPad, iPhone, etc) and then copy the entire Itunes folder (Username -> Music -> iTunes) and put it on an external disk, thumbdrive, or wherever it will be safe. 


    Reformat your machine using the Snow Leopard DVD.  


    Then let the Software Update run till it's done (patience, man, patience!!). 


    Once everything is updated, move the ENTIRE contents of your old iTunes folder into the new iTunes folder (includes iTunes Library.itl, iTunes Music Library.xml, Mobile Applications, Itunes Music, etc.)  Reopen iTunes, and it should all be just like you left it before.  I did this and it still had everything on my iPhone like we never changed anything.  It also remembered by old iPod that hadn't been used in 2+ years. 


    Your iPad should be remembered and sync just as it did before.  I haven't been this happy with my computer since I first bought it.  Never going to upgrade OS X until that ruinous day my hardware dies. 


    iCloud is a very underpowered cloud. 

  • ESym Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks a lot!


    I have never hated my computer so much as I do now with Mountain Lion. Hopefully I will have my good old Snow Leopard computer back this weekend, after the downgrade. The good thing is that I finally took some time to clean up some junk from my HDD before I backup.


    Thanks again.

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