PDA

View Full Version : Help! Software update killed my powerbook!




faithfulFrank
Apr 14, 2006, 03:19 PM
Hi.
My son just did the newest Tiger OS Update......now all that loads is his desktop.....no dock, bar on top or anything, just a spinning beachball.
He tried force quitting it, taking the battery out, unplugging it, etc, but nothing helps.
Applecare just ran out on this powerbook.....any ideas on what now to do?
Thank you in advance for any help.
frank D.



dr_lha
Apr 14, 2006, 03:27 PM
Another one ****ed over by this update. I wasn't personally, but it looks like 10.4.6 was one of the "bad" Apple updates from a lot of these stories on MR.

My advice is to do an "Archive and Install" of Tiger OS. This way you reinstall the OS, but don't lose any data/apps.

A pain in the arse I know.

berg
Apr 14, 2006, 03:32 PM
Problems After Update? Abridged

1. Start up in Safe Mode .. this will run the "Repair Disk" utility.
Be sure the computer is turned off.
Now press the power button.
Just after you hear the startup tone (NOT BEFORE), press and hold down
the shift key.

Now release the shift key when you see the start up screen with the gray
background with the Apple logo and the progress indicator.

During the startup, you will see "Safe Boot" on the Mac OS X startup screen.

To leave the Mac OS X Safe Mode just restart your Mac normally, without
holding any keys during the startup period.

2. Download and Run this ...Onyx
http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/11582
Go to Automation Pane ..
Check all the boxes EXCEPT
1. Optimize the system
2. Hidden DS Store Files
3. Links between documents and applications

Also choose "Clear All" in the button box for caches. Then execute

These settings perform three basic troubleshooting procedures ...
1. Repair permissions
2. Run Unix maintenance (cron) scripts
3. Clear caches

Before any system or security update ..
1. Disconnect all peripherals except keyboard and mouse ..
2. Make sure sleep and screensaver are disabled ....
3. Quit all other apps ..

Use Macaroni to avoid any permissions issues ..
Macaroni - Just Set it and Forget It!
http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/9633

faithfulFrank
Apr 14, 2006, 07:40 PM
Thank you for the help......
Sorry to say, it now will not even boot up in safe mode.
I'm not sure what to do now....

Frank D.

mad jew
Apr 14, 2006, 08:57 PM
Can you start off the OSX disks and try the Archive & Install (http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=107120) that dr_lha was talking about? :)

faithfulFrank
Apr 14, 2006, 09:03 PM
Mad Jew,
Thank you. I pulled out his copy of tiger, and he plans on doing that next.
I think he'll do that a bit later tonight.
He usually waits a few days before taking any update, like I do, to hear if there are any problems, but he "clicked before he thought" today.

I'll keep you posted, and I thank you for the help. It's nice to know there are helpful fellow mac people out there when you are surrounded by a windows world.

Frank D.

berg
Apr 15, 2006, 06:24 AM
Mad Jew,
Thank you. I pulled out his copy of tiger, and he plans on doing that next.
I think he'll do that a bit later tonight.
He usually waits a few days before taking any update, like I do, to hear if there are any problems, but he "clicked before he thought" today.

I'll keep you posted, and I thank you for the help. It's nice to know there are helpful fellow mac people out there when you are surrounded by a windows world.

Frank D.


I don't know if it's too late .... but it's a good idea to repair your disk from disk utility on the install disk before you do the archive and install ...

Here's some other tips on it ..
Archive and Install
http://www.thexlab.com/faqs/archiveinstall.html

Good luck ...

faithfulFrank
Apr 15, 2006, 07:57 AM
Thanks Burg!
I just noticed he did not do anything yet...I just printed the link you posted and will give that to him.

thank you,
Frank D.

faithfulFrank
Apr 15, 2006, 10:22 AM
Well, so far so good. He was able to somehow use the tiger disk, start it in safe mode, and is now doing an archive and install. I made an appointment with the apple store for later today if we don't have success, but I think we'll be ok. I really don't want to travel 70 miles round trip to visit Buffalo today.

Things are looking up.....

Frank D.

berg
Apr 15, 2006, 10:43 AM
I was in a hurry when I posted ...

Archive and Install will certainly work ... repairing the disk may be all that was needed ....

After that he needs to run either software update or install the combo updater ..
Standalone Installers ...
http://www.apple.com/support/downloads//

Once you're up and running you need to make sure basic maintenance is done on the machine ... it really shouldn't have crashed on the update ...

So I'll leave you a few things to consider ...

Before any system or security update ..
1. Disconnect all peripherals except keyboard and mouse ..
2. Make sure sleep and screensaver are disabled ....
3. Quit all other apps ..

This repairs permissions on a regular basis and runs cron scripts ...
Macaroni - Just Set it and Forget It!
http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/9633

The only other thing you might have to do if your machine acts up is clear the caches ... here is a great app for doing that ...there are many others.

Cache Out X
http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/9538

With Macaroni and a cache cleaner you will avoid 99% of the few problems
users encounter ...

For the ultimate in protection ... I recommend ..
Disk Warrior
http://www.alsoftinc.com/DiskWarrior/index.html

Also .. if you're happy with the way the computer is running ...and you have critical need of your computer ... it's not always necessary to update ... I am running Panther quite happily ... I do the necessary security updates only. I ran a long time in 10.3.6 and then updated to 10.3.9 after it had been out for a while ..

Happy Computing!

faithfulFrank
Apr 15, 2006, 10:51 AM
Thank you Burg,
Well, the archive and install just compleated, but when it restarted, what came up is just like before.
His desktop shows, but no dock or menu bar.....only about 1/2 inch of menu bar showing the spotlight icon.
Perhaps he next needs to just do a complete reinstall without archiving anything.

Any suggestions?

Thanks, Frank D.

faithfulFrank
Apr 15, 2006, 11:08 AM
I guess I spoke too soon.
The first time it started after the archive and install, it did what I said it did in the last post, but after about 10 minutes or so, the rest appeared, and the dock, desktop icons, etc are all there like normal.
We restarted it again, and all came back faster, within 10 seconds or so.

His powerbook only has 700 something of ram,(the max i'm told) and a 30 gig hard drive, and he only has about 1.5 gig free. Applecare just ran out on it, and he is waiting for the next version or so for a new mac book pro....maybe the 17".

After being numbed by college tuition, buying him a new macbook pro is just like a few textbooks....

I think he'll use it like this for a day or two, to make sure all is well, then install your recommendations.

I'm using my 3 year old imac now to type this, I think i'll do the same thing also.

Thanks again!

Frank D.

berg
Apr 15, 2006, 11:16 AM
Hello Frank ..

Really glad to hear things are improving ...

Did he remember to "repair the disk" from the install disk?

If so the next thing he should do is repair permissions and clean the caches. You can do that with Onyx and the settings I mentioned ...

He has enough ram (just barely for pleasurable use) but disk space is definitely an issue ... that can cause all sorts of weird behaviour and might be the source of all his problems ..

Here is some info on disk space and its importance .. there should be between 10 and 15 % free depending who you talk to ..

How Much Free Space Do I need On My Drive?
http://www.macfixitforums.com/php/showflat.php?Board=Forum35&Number=673793

How Much Free Space Do I Need on My Hard Drive? 2
http://www.macfixitforums.com/php/showflat.php?Cat=&Board=Forum38&Number=570808&page=0&view=collapsed&sb=5&o=7&fpart=1

Problems Arising from Insufficient Ram and Free Hard Disk Space
http://www.thexlab.com/faqs/lackofram.html

Freeing Space on Your OS X Boot Volume
http://www.thexlab.com/faqs/freeingspace.html

Cheers ..!

faithfulFrank
Apr 15, 2006, 11:39 AM
Thank you so much again Burg.
He is a 3rd year Graphic Design major.....his 3 year old 12" powerbook is woefully inadequate.....thus his wanting a new macbook pro sometime this year.
I'd take his powerbook because I'm just an old guy who does the normal household stuff.....surfing, mailing, etc. I'd like to take it to work at the firehouse, but our wifi is a bit weak at work....I tried this powerbook but the reception is so weak that you have about a one square foot area that it barely works. Other windoze laptops seem to do a tad bit better, but i'm told that there is nothing I can do to "boost" the powerbook. I'm told it won't take an external antenna card thing, and that a verizon wire to use my cellphone won't work because it's a mac.

I'll either give it to my younger son or put it on ebay....

Thank you again for your kind help.

Frank D.

mad jew
Apr 15, 2006, 08:28 PM
Yeah, I almost guaranty the problems stem from the disk space issue. Aim for 8GB of free space as a minimum and it'll probably work flawlessly from here on in. :)