1 Reply Latest reply: May 27, 2013 10:10 AM by Linc Davis
alex_sam Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I am using a 21,5" mid 2010 iMac. The 1Tb hard drive is partion in to sections, each ~500gb - on one of them I have MacOS X installed, on th eother one - Windows, via BootCamp.

Recently there was a problem with electricity in my house, so my Mac was shut down while I was using it. It happened a few times before, but didn't cause any problems. But this time, after the shutdown, MacOS wouldn't start up. The screen would show the Apple logo for some time, and then a "stop" sign instead of it, and then remain like that. Though, I still am able to start up windows and "Recovery 10.8". The disk utility on Recovery 10.8 says that my hard disk has a "hardware problem that can't be repaired', which is pretty obvious.

So, my question. I really do not want to lose all the data on my Mac. I do not have any Time Machine backups, but I can access all the files on the Mac partion of the hard drive from Windows. How can I restore my system? It's obvious that I will have the Hard Drive replaced, so how can I transfer my data on it? Should I try to do it myself, or will I have to take it to an Apple store?

iMac, Mac OS X (10.7.5)
  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (147,175 points)

    If you want to preserve the data on the boot drive, you must try to back up now, before you do anything else. It may or may not be possible. If you don't care about the data, you can skip this step.

    There are several ways to back up a Mac that is unable to fully boot. You need an external hard drive to hold the backup data.

    1. Boot from the Recovery partition or from a local Time Machine backup volume (option key at startup.) Launch Disk Utility and follow the instructions in this support article, under “Instructions for backing up to an external hard disk via Disk Utility.”

    2. If you have access to a working Mac, and both it and the non-working Mac have FireWire or Thunderbolt ports, boot the non-working Mac in target disk mode. Use the working Mac to copy the data to another drive. This technique won't work with USB, Ethernet, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth.

    3. If the internal drive of the non-working Mac is user-replaceable, remove it and mount it in an external enclosure or drive dock. Use another Mac to copy the data.


    Apple - Support - iMac 1TB Seagate Hard Drive Replacement Program