Previous 1 2 3 4 5 Next 98 Replies Latest reply: Aug 29, 2014 11:35 AM by nyexpat Go to original post
  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    PaulMeuller wrote:

    . . .

    Got an error message (in red, no less!) that the hard drive couldn't be repaired and needed to be erased, etc.

    Ah, yes, that explains it (I should have asked that first).  The HD's directory was hopelessly corrupted.


    AND SO: I restored the computer using the 12/11 backup that was listed (in fact, the only one that was/is listed).


    THE THING IS, THOUGH: I got the computer to boot up ok, but am missing my personal data, settings, iTunes librtary, etc.

    Ah, ok, so your hardware is ok, and you seem to have a good version of OSX (it may not be up to date, though -- if it's from Novermber 2011, it will be Lion, not Mountain Lion).



    All, I suspect, are safe and sound in the 1/13 backup that I can only see when Option>Browse Other Backup Disks. 

    Sounds like something happened between December of 2011 and now.  There are several possibilites, but it probably doesn't much matter.


    THUS: I guess I am left wondering that if I do a complete erase of the hard drive, per your 10:06 post above, willI then be able to (a) access, and (b) load what I need to from the 1/13 backup?

    No, I'd not recommend that now.  


    Since you do have an apparently-good Jan 13 backup, your best bet may be to use Migration Assistant to transfer your 3rd-party apps, user account(s), and data.


    You may not want to do that with the user account you're now using, however, as that may further complicate things -- you'll end up with one or more extra accounts and/or possible permissions problems with files on other drives.


    And if you're now running Lion, it won't let you transfer "backwards" from Mountain Lion, so you'd need to upgrade to Mountain Lion first.


    So, let's be sure we know where we are:


    • Confirm what version of OSX you're now on.


    • How many user accounts do you now have (and how many were on the backups)?


    • Are you reasonably certain (by spot-checking) that the 1/13 backup has all your apps, user accounts, and data?


    Then we can figure out what you need to do.


    P.S.  AHT doesn't start when I press/hold 'D' upon restarting.

    I'm not sure when Apple started putting them on the HD -- it may have been after your 2008 Mac was shipped.


    If you can't find it, don't worry about it now.  And AppleCare can send replacements for a nominal fee (they'll need your serial number). 

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)


    OS X 10.8.2 (12C60) (upgraded to this version of Mountain Lion)


    ACCOUNTS:  Only 1




    Guide on, Kimosabe...


    P.S. The last backup from Recovery was dated December 2012.  For the life of me, I don't know why I wrote November of '11...

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    PaulMeuller wrote:



    OS X 10.8.2 (12C60) (upgraded to this version of Mountain Lion)


    ACCOUNTS:  Only 1



    Ah, cool.  I got distracted by the 2011 date. 


    I'm not sure why you're missing stuff from your user account -- it should be as of the November 2012 backup.


    Anyhow, here's the deal:


    Migration Assistant can't "merge" data from the account on your backups into the account that now exists on your Mac.  So, if there's any new data in that home folder (new since the Jan 13 backup), that you want to keep, copy it elsewhere first.


    Create a new, temporary User Account via System Preferences > Users & Groups.  Click the padlock and enter your current Admin password to unlock, then click the plus sign at the bottom.  Make the new account an Admin account.  Use any name but the one on your backups.


    Then log off your current account, log on to the new one, and delete the old one.  To do that, unlock it again (use the password for the new account), click the minus sign, and select Delete the home folder on the pop-up.


    Now you're ready to do the migration.  Start the Migration Assistant app (in your Applications/Utilities folder).  You'll have to close all other apps, but then the process is pretty simple to follow  (see Using Migration Assistant on Mountain Lion or Lion if you want the gory details).  Do leave the Settings prompt checked so Time Machine's next backup will be an incremental one, not a full one.


    When it's done, you should be able to log on to the transferred account and see everything, just as it was at the time of the last completed backup.  The only problem might be, if whatever went wrong on your HD had already corrupted things, the migration may fail, or finish but things may be missed or incomplete.  Since you spot-checked, that's doubtful, but always a possibility.



    When it's all done, you can delete the temporary account, but it might be a good idea to keep it, just in case a problem develops with the main one.


    Also . . . you need to be sure Time Machine is backing-up your system files & apps.  The easiest way is to just spot check after the next backup, to be sure it has the System folder, with contents, at the top level of your HD.  If it's not there, or empty, post back and we'll fix it.

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    I am really hoping Telly Savales is on his way to tell me I've been on Candid Camera...


    Set up new user

    Deleted old user.

    Migration Assistant doesn't list any of my backups, only the latest one from my wife's Mac on the same in-home network.


    Using Option>BOBD, I choose my backup, but no 1/13 9:24am exists!  In fact, the only backups to choose from were all done in the last 20 minutes!

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    Then, I get the green icon "Time Machine Backups" to appear on the new user's desktop.


    When I open it and look in the Backups.backupdb folder, there is a folder called Paul's Mac, and in it is the 1/13 9:24am backup (and the other backups not showing up when I enter TM).


    So, is the next issue how I get Migration Assistant to find the 1/13 backup (and, parenthetically, wasn't that what you and I wanted DU>Restore to do which is how we got to using MA in the first place. Egads!)


    I've extra lollipops for when Telly shows up!

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    If I'm giving you too much info, tell me. I'm trying to provide as much as I can for you and for folks who may go through this in the future...


    On the new user's desktop are three images from Finder:

    - a plain white disk image named Time Machine Backups

    - a silver icon for Macintosh HD

    - a green icon with counter-clockwise arrow and clock thingy named Time Machine Backups which I get onto the desktop only by starting a backup.


    On the white TMB, are my wife's backups

    On the green TMB are the backups from/for the user I deleted.

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    We need to re-group a bit.


    We are talking about an Apple Time Capsule here, not a 3rd-party NAS (network drive), right?  Looks like this:


    If so, is it set up with a single password for both your Macs, or are there separate "account" passwords to access it, one for each Mac?


    If there's a single password (by far the most common setup), there should be two "sparse bundles" on the TC's disk, one for each Mac, like this (with the Finder in Column View), and the ".sparsebundle" in the name may not be shown:



    The disk image (circled in green) won't appear until you double-click one of the sparse bundles to mount it (eject it before trying to use Migration Assistant again).



    Migration Assistant should show you something like the 4th sample here, except it's probably named "Data":




    When you select it and click Continue, you should be asked for the password.  Then the "To connect ..." should be replaced with "2 Time Machine Backups found."  When you select it again and click Continue, you should see both sets, something like this:


    6. Sparse bundles on network.jpg


    Then select the one named for your Mac.  It sounds like you're selecting your wife's, not yours.


    Or, if you're only seeing one, it sounds like you're using the wrong account password.

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    Time capsule - yes

    Single password - yes

    Two sparse bundles - yes

    What Migration Assistant Shows - "Our Family Time Capsule" that is the same blue icon as 4th sample above

    When I press continue - only my wife's shows; there isn't one named for my Mac; there is only one account password for our time capsule; when I go to TM Preferences, there is a blue icon with wifi thingy that is chosen as the backup disk & available disks shows another "Our Family Time Capsule" with little connected paper people on it.

    - i selected the paper people image, entered the pwd (the same one as the wifi icon's pwd), reentered MA, and, again, was only given the choice of my Wife's backup

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    PaulMeuller wrote:

    . . .

    What Migration Assistant Shows - "Our Family Time Capsule" that is the same blue icon as 4th sample above

    When I press continue

    Does "to connect ..." change to "1 Time Machine Backup" found, or "2 Time Machine Backups found," or does it not change at all?


    Does the Finder show both sparse bundles?

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    You lost me:  "to connect"?

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    A bit hard to see:



  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    Can I include pictures in a reply to you? How?

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    Sure.  Take a screenshot (or whatever).  Click the camera icon in the toolbar and follow the instructions to select it.


    Note that sometimes the Insert Image button stays disabled after you select the one you want -- close the window and try again.  After clicking the icon, wait a few seconds before clicking Choose File.


    Screen Shot 2013-01-15 at 6.10.58 PM.png

  • PaulMeuller Level 1 (0 points)

    ok - thanks for the email.


    Where it's going wrong per the tan box is, as you noted, I am only seeing my wife's backups (only).

  • Pondini Level 8 (38,715 points)

    What does the Finder show (should be similar to the second image in my 5:25 pm "we need to regroup" post.


    In Migration Assistant, what's shown under the blue icon (like the 4th sample above with the arrow) -- it should show the "to connect ..." legend initially, then when you enter the password to connect, that should change to "2 Time Machine Backups found"  (or maybe only 1).


    I get the impression that you've already mounted the disk image containing your wife's backups, so that's all you're seeing.  If so, eject them before starting Migration Assistant.

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