Dead 10.3.... and I need documents on the HD

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by parenthesis, Feb 27, 2004.

  1. parenthesis macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2003
    Here and there
    Hypothetical situation here....

    Lets say that you have some important documents stored on your home folder (like scholarship applications). Now lets say that 10.3 decided to have a kernal panic at startup. How would you get your documents back?
    You tried putting in the 10.3 disk, but the installer says that you cannot install OS X because a newer version of OS X is already installed.

    Is all lost? Do you now have to start over (assuming you can find the scholarship apps again)
  2. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    Re: Dead 10.3.... and I need documents on the HD

    Dead drive sucks. If you do get your scholarship, might I suggest Computing 101: Backing up Your Hard Drive?
  3. parenthesis thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2003
    Here and there
    I have a backup of about a week ago, but that doesn't have the completed apps.
  4. wordmunger macrumors 603


    Sep 3, 2003
    North Carolina
    So far what you've said doesn't necessarily mean you have a dead drive. Have you tried removing any 3rd party RAM?

    IIRC you should at least be able to boot up with your install CD. You don't need to install the OS, right, just access your HD. So boot from the CD and see if you can find your HD image. Then copy the files to an external drive of some sort.
  5. mangoduck macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2002
    lost at sea
    unless the panther install cd is different, you can't do that when running from it like you could with classic. there's no finder, no terminal, no anything that would lend access to files on the machine. just the installer and disk utility.

    have you tried an archive and install? it renames your old system directories, keeping data intact, and creates a fresh set. then booting from the clean installation would let you get at your old files (some "chown"-ing required) as well as make your machine not dead, possibly. also, the archive option doesn't care what version exists already because it's going to be scrapped anyway. you could stick the public beta on there if you wanted.

    another option is to start up in single user mode (the command escapes me). this is command line only, but you'll see if it's able to startup completely with no gui, and if so you may be able to rescue things. don't know if external volumes must be manually mounted - i'd use cli ftp if i had to.

    as for the panic itself, those are usually caused by hardware. dead hd (less likely), faulty ram, uncooperative peripherals. try to remember if you've added any devices recently.
  6. g30ffr3y macrumors 6502a


    Jul 18, 2002
    buffalo ny
    how about reloading panther on a new drive and slaving the old drive just so you could access the documents...
  7. dragula53 macrumors regular

    Jun 23, 2003

    This is why I partition.

    keep system drive and "stuff" drive seperate

    if my operating system takes a dirt-nap, I can do a reload, and get my data back from the partition.

    Pop in your operating system disc, and run disk utility, and repair permissions. and disk first-aid

    long-shot, probably.

    but do partition, it's worth it.
  8. cubist macrumors 68020

    Jul 4, 2002
    Muncie, Indiana
    You can boot to the single user prompt (cmd-S, is it?) and then do the fsck -y to fix the filesystem if there's something wrong with it. You might try resetting the CUDA, or resetting PRAM (cmd-P-R, wait for chimes). These things might clear the initial panic.

    You can boot OS 9, and copy your files to a zip drive or something like that.

    On Panther, you can do an 'archive and install' rather than an upgrade install.

    I don't agree with partitioning. Two drives is a better suggestion, especially for a PowerMac.

    But of course the best suggestion, Monday-morning-quarterback style, is backing up regularly. I burn a CD-R (now a DVD-R :) ) every month of all my data files. The three laws of network computing:
    1. Backups.
    2. Backups.
    3. Backups.
  9. markoibook macrumors regular

    Jan 28, 2004
    Reading, UK.
    On iBook and PowerBook (not sure about other Macs) there is a mode known as Target Disk or Firewire mode.
    Basically, you shut your Mac down, and then start it up whilst pressing a key combination (think its Cmd+T), and it essentially turns the machine into a firewire hard drive. Then plug it into another Mac using a firewire cable, and you should be able to see the contents of its drive.
    Not sure if this works, but if you look on Apple's website it gives more details
  10. parenthesis thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2003
    Here and there

    I completed the applications using the backup that I had on the PC, but I think my iBook is a little more broken than I thought...

    I cannot zap the PRAM. I tried many, many times. It just refuses to do anything. (and I know I was using the correct key-combo. I even looked up the Apple KB article)

    It took me three tires to get into the firmware, and then about a half an hour of typing the same password for it to reset itself.

    Could I be having logic-board issues? Its a late 2001 model, and I have not had any problems with it before....

    Is this something I should be calling Apple about (I have an extended AppleCare plan until November)

    Thanks, by the way, for all of the suggestions. I thought that backing up once a week was enough, but apparently... :rolleyes:
  11. crees! macrumors 68000


    Jun 14, 2003
    Re: update

    You paid for AppleCare yet you're questioning whether or not you should call Apple because your computer isn't working. That just doesn't make sense. Why pay for AppleCare if you're not going to take advantage of it. The files on your computer matter right? Then call them.
  12. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    Re: update

    Call, and call now--it sounds a lot like a hardware problem, so take advantage of what you paid for and get them to fix it as quickly as possible. (Or, at worst, they'll explain what's wrong and how to fix it without mailing them the computer--nothing to complain about there, either.)
  13. mangoduck macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2002
    lost at sea
    unrelated, but worthy of mention: do people ever read the entirety of threads anymore before posting? i feel like i'm reading the same post over and over, particularly with dragula and cubist's, because half of each one has already been said. don't reply to or flame me, just start reading. thank you.

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