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View Full Version : Air 11' Huge Problem - Password + USB Restore




veast
Mar 16, 2011, 04:04 AM
Hi all,


I have a two weeks old MBA 11' base model. This morning, after I turn it off and go to work, I noticed that the startup takes longer than usual when I try to boot it back on. But worse still, a safeboot mode asking for password suddenly appears. I tried typing in a 100% sure correct password but it says that I'm wrong no matter how many times I tried (no, capslock is off).

I have installed quite a number of softwares which usually prompt for password during installation, I have always used this one and only admin password (Just to ensure you that I don't forget my password).

I knew something was wrong, then I use another PC to google out what is a possible solution. Apple and others say that I can boot with my USB Restore Drive inserted (I have to run back home to get this) and hold 'c' or 'option' when boot up to go inside password change menu.

When I boot up holding 'c', nothing happened... tried a few times and alwasy return me the safeboot screen asking for friggin password.

Then I tried holding 'option' instead, sure enough I can access the normal boot (with a few glitch, such as when tapping one folder and another, it will as if I'm holding the command key, when in fact I'm not).

There I can see a USB restore drive on my desktop, slight relief, I quickly grabbed a USB drive and copy all important documents in case anything worse happen.

I double clicked on the USB restore drive icon after backing up my data. There a window appears with two options, 1. Install Mac OSX, 2. Install iLife

I chose install Mac OSX, and they ask me to restart to begin the process.

But damn, clicking on restart again ask me for the friggin password (tried inserting and obviously didn't work).

So... what I'm supposed to do now? Am I dead? If possible I need to resolve this myself without going over to Apple. Gosh, I started to dislike Mac because of this.

Thanks. any comments really appreciated.



Applepi
Mar 16, 2011, 04:11 AM
Same password thing happened for me when I tried to reinstall/restore from time machine backup and it was very frustrating. Ended up working after 4 failed attempts/zeroing out the HD first. Good luck with your situation.

Chundles
Mar 16, 2011, 04:13 AM
If you hold down option while it's booting you should be given the option to boot from the USB key.

It sounds like there could be keyboard problems if it thinks command is always held down. Haven't split anything on the keyboard have you?

Stingray454
Mar 16, 2011, 04:27 AM
I had a similar problem. After a spill-accident on my keyboard, the computer suddenly started to think that my shift-key was beeing pressed all the time and booted only to safe mode - the computer should boot to safe-mode if you hold down the shift key during boot. This also meant that holding stuff like "c" down while booting was precieved as "shift-c", which doesn't do anything, and thus didn't work. This sounds exactly like your problem.

I noticed that holding any other key while booting, like "a" for example, meant it would think I held "shift-a" (which doesn't do anything), but that doesn't trigger safe boot either. Try that, or with a separate USB keyboard.

Once you get to OS X, go to System Prefereces -> Language & Text -> Input Sources and check the "Show input menu in menu bar" checkbox. Then from the bar menu, select "Show Keyboard Viewer". This shows an on-screen keyboard, and displays what buttons are believed to be pressed. If your computer thinks that the shift-button (or any other key) is pressed, it will show here.

Hope this helps!

veast
Mar 16, 2011, 06:59 AM
THANKSSSS!

Indeed it is a keyboard problem, I just let the pc goes to sleep today when booting while pressing option. After get back home I try looking at the virtual keyboard as Stingray454 suggested, changing my password normally in system preferences and it works!

Many many thanks for your input guys.

Stingray454
Mar 16, 2011, 12:16 PM
I'm glad the suggestions helped :)

How about the mac, do you have to replace your keyboard or can you boot normally now? Is it something Apple will fix on warranty, or was it caused by a spill or similar? Let us know how it works out!

veast
Mar 18, 2011, 09:03 AM
I'm glad the suggestions helped :)

How about the mac, do you have to replace your keyboard or can you boot normally now? Is it something Apple will fix on warranty, or was it caused by a spill or similar? Let us know how it works out!

That day I do nothing except closing the lid, I did not spill anything on the keyboard, nor typing with wet hands.

But today same thing happened again :mad:

This time around I actually cant see the shift being pressed when I open the virtual keyboard, I do see it stuck when I press the shift once. Clicking shift on virtual keyboard will make it looks like it non-stuck already but it still types uppercases. (By the way, both of the shift keys in keyboard are not really stuck)

What I did just now was pressing both shifts few times while positioning my notebook slightly reverse such that the keyboard facing down. Then I gently blow while repeatedly pressing the shift buttons.

After awhile it unstucked. Guess it was hardware issue, luckily today it happened after work and didn't bother me a lot.

Any idea to prevent this happening again?

Thanks.

artivideo.nl
Mar 18, 2011, 09:21 AM
"Then from the bar menu, select "Show Keyboard Viewer"." cant find this "bar menu"?



QUOTE=Stingray454;12167063]I had a similar problem. After a spill-accident on my keyboard, the computer suddenly started to think that my shift-key was beeing pressed all the time and booted only to safe mode - the computer should boot to safe-mode if you hold down the shift key during boot. This also meant that holding stuff like "c" down while booting was precieved as "shift-c", which doesn't do anything, and thus didn't work. This sounds exactly like your problem.

I noticed that holding any other key while booting, like "a" for example, meant it would think I held "shift-a" (which doesn't do anything), but that doesn't trigger safe boot either. Try that, or with a separate USB keyboard.

Once you get to OS X, go to System Prefereces -> Language & Text -> Input Sources and check the "Show input menu in menu bar" checkbox. Then from the bar menu, select "Show Keyboard Viewer". This shows an on-screen keyboard, and displays what buttons are believed to be pressed. If your computer thinks that the shift-button (or any other key) is pressed, it will show here.

Hope this helps![/QUOTE]

veast
Mar 18, 2011, 09:39 AM
"Then from the bar menu, select "Show Keyboard Viewer"." cant find this "bar menu"?



QUOTE=Stingray454;12167063]I had a similar problem. After a spill-accident on my keyboard, the computer suddenly started to think that my shift-key was beeing pressed all the time and booted only to safe mode - the computer should boot to safe-mode if you hold down the shift key during boot. This also meant that holding stuff like "c" down while booting was precieved as "shift-c", which doesn't do anything, and thus didn't work. This sounds exactly like your problem.

I noticed that holding any other key while booting, like "a" for example, meant it would think I held "shift-a" (which doesn't do anything), but that doesn't trigger safe boot either. Try that, or with a separate USB keyboard.

Once you get to OS X, go to System Prefereces -> Language & Text -> Input Sources and check the "Show input menu in menu bar" checkbox. Then from the bar menu, select "Show Keyboard Viewer". This shows an on-screen keyboard, and displays what buttons are believed to be pressed. If your computer thinks that the shift-button (or any other key) is pressed, it will show here.

Hope this helps![/QUOTE]

You're asking about the virtual keyboard thingy right?

If yes, this is how to show it on the upper right corner:

Go to System Pref - keyboard - keyboard tab (left one) - then tick on the "show keyboard & character viewer in menu bar"

After you did, you can open the virtual keyboard by clicking on the upper right hand tab keyboard icon.

Hope this helps.

Stingray454
Mar 18, 2011, 10:39 AM
Any idea to prevent this happening again?

Thanks.

It does sound like your keyboard is broken in some way. I guess it's not actually the shift key that is broken, but maybe a loose keyboard connector cable, dust inside the keyboard or similar. Either way, if this is a new Air and you didn't do anything to cause it (like spill a cup of coffe on top of it) - have it replaced. They should replace the keyboard for you for free, and then you can be sure it won't happen again. This shouldn't happen to a new product and should also be covered by warranty. Just report it asap!

veast
Mar 19, 2011, 02:21 AM
It does sound like your keyboard is broken in some way. I guess it's not actually the shift key that is broken, but maybe a loose keyboard connector cable, dust inside the keyboard or similar. Either way, if this is a new Air and you didn't do anything to cause it (like spill a cup of coffe on top of it) - have it replaced. They should replace the keyboard for you for free, and then you can be sure it won't happen again. This shouldn't happen to a new product and should also be covered by warranty. Just report it asap!

Today the problem reoccured... I was just about to bring it to nearby Apple authorized service centre. But by the moment I was closing open apps to shut down, the key back to normal again. Played around a few hours and til now it's still okay. It's hard to show them this issue when it's not happening.

Next week, I'm expecting to be out of office whole week and totally relying on this machine. It's troubling me now.

Stingray454
Mar 20, 2011, 03:46 AM
Today the problem reoccured... I was just about to bring it to nearby Apple authorized service centre. But by the moment I was closing open apps to shut down, the key back to normal again. Played around a few hours and til now it's still okay. It's hard to show them this issue when it's not happening.

Next week, I'm expecting to be out of office whole week and totally relying on this machine. It's troubling me now.

I'm not sure you need to show them the problem - just say it happens randomly every now and then, I think they will agree the keyboard is broken and replace your keyboard (or entire computer). Good luck!

veast
Mar 21, 2011, 05:27 AM
I'm not sure you need to show them the problem - just say it happens randomly every now and then, I think they will agree the keyboard is broken and replace your keyboard (or entire computer). Good luck!

Yep, I brought it there already. When at home, the problem still persist but when I wake the machine up in the service centre, the shift worked normally.

Then I excused myself for a minute to use the machine as I know that the problem show up quite often. And indeed it did after a minute or so.

I'm going to use my office laptop for the time being. Man, it feels like carrying bricks around after two weeks blissful days. :p

Thanks for your input mate, really appreciate it.