Anybody use their USB restore drive yet?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by kdoug, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. kdoug macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    Iowa City, IA USA
    #1
    Whenever I get a new computer, I'll usually do a fresh install without the languages and translations. The drive stick is made of cheap plastic and when you install it into the USB port it takes some effort. When you remove it. the port leaves 2 rather large scratch marks on the bottom and four on the top. I'm not totally thrilled with the design or material of this. The other problem is the size, it is smaller than I originally thought, allot of people are going to lose it. I'm going to buy an 8GB flash drive and see if I can copy it for future use.
     
  2. Fuchal macrumors 68020

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    Sep 30, 2003
    #2
    I had the same experience. I think it's rather crappily designed. Took a lot of effort to insert and then practically was stuck inside - had to grip hard and pull it out. Form over function for sure.
     
  3. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #3
    Glad I'm not the only one who thought it was cheap. For a few extra dollars why not make it aluminum, shroud the contact end and give it a cap.
     
  4. frunkis54 macrumors 65816

    frunkis54

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    #4
    So would you just go to Disk Utility and make image then put it on a better thumb drive?
     
  5. KandyKane macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Is it visible on the outside (edge) or just the inside of the USB slot?
    Let us know how it goes with the copying...
     
  6. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #6
    The scratches in the plastic are not visible when the USB stick is installed. It takes some effort to get it pushed in and pulled out. Plastic and aluminum just don't mix.
     
  7. Fuchal macrumors 68020

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    #7
    It's on the thumb drive
     
  8. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #8
    When the drive was mounted on my desktop last night, I just right clicked it and made a copy on my desktop. I'm going to buy an 8GB flash drive and see if I can get it copied. I'm not sure about Disk Utility, maybe Carbon Copy Cloner.
     
  9. KandyKane macrumors 6502

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    #9
    OHHH I thought it scratched the laptop, phew!
     
  10. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #10
    One other thing. the tape that holds the thumb drive in place on the packaging will not re-stick so there's no way for the drive stay put in the packaging once your done. The answer is to get a little piece of scotch tape, fold 1/4 inch of the end over to make a tab and stick it over the back. It holds it in place perfectly!
     
  11. bcaslis macrumors 68020

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    Mar 11, 2008
    #11
    Has anyone succeeded in doing this? I haven't been able to make a bootable copy with Disk Utility, SuperDuper, or Carbon Copy yet. Everyone tells me it's not a bootable disk, but you can boot from the original.
     
  12. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #12
    I've tried everything. No way to make a copy. Disk Utility show's the restore drive as some kind of CD/R even though it's USB. I wouldn't recommend losing it.
     
  13. BryanLyle macrumors 6502a

    BryanLyle

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    Aug 2, 2005
    #13
    Same experience here. USB drive was very hard to insert and it left large scratches on the drive.
     
  14. wirelessmacuser macrumors 68000

    wirelessmacuser

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    #14
    From the looks of mine, it's something one would expect from Acer, not an Apple Netbook. The word cheap comes to mind. Quite contrary to Apple Hype.
     
  15. tangoshukudai macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2010
    #15
    I successfully made a ISO image out of the drive by typing into the terminal:

    sudo umount /dev/disk#

    then type:

    sudo dd if=/dev/disk# of=~/Desktop/backup.iso


    /dev/disk# is the disk number of the drive, mine was disk1, but yours might be different. To check you can go to disk utility and get information on the drive it should say what number it is.

    good luck

    to restore this to another drive you can do this in disk utility or reverse the dd command like so: sudo dd if=~/Desktop/backup.iso of=/dev/disk#
     
  16. jenzjen macrumors 68000

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    #16
    Warning, rookie question coming since I have a Superdrive - could I burn this iso to disc and reinstall off that disc if I ever needed to?
     
  17. slazareth macrumors regular

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    Feb 5, 2006
    #17
    Personally I guess I'm not surprised its cheap. It has to compete with a blank CD. I do agree that many people will probably lose them and I speculate that apple will keep them handy to send to people free of charge in this event. At least I hope that's the case :D They should probably put the install disk up for online download so you can transfer it to a blank thumb drive if you lose the original.
     
  18. wirelessmacuser macrumors 68000

    wirelessmacuser

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    #18
    My earlier comment was my honest opinion, I'm _not_ bashing Apple. Let's look at this from their side. It would cost less than one dollar more to deliver a quality part. Something that Apple used to do before they became extremely greedy. It's this type of cost cutting that hurts their image more than needed. After all, they still act and charge prices reflective of a premier company. Why cut corners on the little things?
     
  19. bcaslis macrumors 68020

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    #19
    Where you able to make a bootable disk from the image? I can make an image OK, just can't get a bootable copy.
     
  20. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    #20
    Here's another way. I made a bootable copy also, took a little time though. Used Carbon Copy Cloner.

    I first had to make the invisible files visible with Onyx (Parameters tab/Finder/Misc. Options/Show hidden files).
    I mounted the invisible 10.6 OS X.dmg file located in the USB Apple OS X Install drive on the desktop. I cloned it to my 8GB (formatted journaled) flash drive. You can than use the flash drive to boot and/or install the system but it won't have iLife 11 on it.

    If you want iLife 11, start Carbon Copy Cloner again. This time make the original Apple USB drive your Source and your 8GB flash drive your destination. Carbon Copy Cloner should than give you a little green light on the right panel that say's the disk will be bootable. Check the box where it say's "Delete items that don't exist on the source". After it completely finishes, you'll have an exact copy of the original Apple drive with the same desktop icon that's fully bootable and has iLife installed.
    Your welcome!
     
  21. tangoshukudai macrumors newbie

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    Oct 31, 2010
    #21

    Yep images the drive exactly, mirrors it right over.
     
  22. slazareth macrumors regular

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    Feb 5, 2006
    #22
    Possibly, but you also have to think about it this way. If they make them cheaper, it won't be a big deal to give them away for free when you lose yours (which I'm guessing the general public is probably going to be losing them more so than complaining about build quality).

    Though I definitely agree with your argument about it affecting their image. Let's be honest though—did anyone buy the MBA because of the included software being on a cute little thumb drive? I know when mine shows up tomorrow I'm going to look at the usb drive and then throw it in a drawer like most people. This thumb drive thing will be a topic now while its new, but I doubt we'll hear too much about it several months from now.

    I know years ago when I worked at circuit city most manufacturers didn't even include restore disks. Instead you had to call and order them in the event that you actually needed to use them. Now that's cheap haha.

    Not trying to make excuses for apple here. Just trying to think how they must have been thinking when they made decision to make the usb drives on the cheap. Do I wish the thumb drive was higher quality? Sure. Does it really matter to me consider I doubt I'll be using it that much? No, not really
     
  23. slazareth macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2006
    #23
    Also, I'm rather curious now as to what the stats are on usage of restore drives. How many Mac owners ever use their restore disks. I know I use mine, but I'm not the majority of Apple users (at least not anymore :D)

    One other thing. I don't have my MBA yet, but I know that all of my USB plugs have scratches on them from being plugged and plugged from various computers. Is this scratching of the Apple restore drives any different, or is it just more noticeable?
     
  24. bcaslis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    #24
    I couldn't get your commands to work. For my case the disk was disk1s3 (found using diskutil). However the dd command always gives an error that the of file doesn't exist even if I use touch to create a file. What am I missing?
     
  25. kdoug thread starter macrumors 6502a

    kdoug

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    Jun 2, 2010
    Location:
    Iowa City, IA USA
    #25
    I'm going to try and explain this step by step:
    1. Download and install Onyx, this is so you can see hidden files on the Apple drive.

    2. Make the invisible files visible with Onyx (Parameters tab/Finder/Misc. Options/Show hidden files).

    3.Double click the Mac OS X installer .dmg file that was hidden so it'll mount to your desktop.

    4. Download and install Carbon Copy Cloner.

    5. Open CCC and for the source, pick the the Mac OS X installer image on your desktop.

    6. For the destination, you should choose your formatted 8GB flash drive.

    7. Click the clone button and it will make a bootable, system installable copy on your new flash drive. It will not copy iLife though, that step is next.

    8. The reason you have to do step 7 is we need the hidden system files to make bootable for the next step.

    9. Once your new drive is cloned with the installer, boot from it to make sure everything's OK.

    10. Once booted back to your desktop, with both the Apple drive and your new USB drive plugged in, start CCC again.

    11. Make the Apple USB flash drive your source and your USB drive your destination.

    12. This is important! There's a check box on the right side under the source, click it. It say's "Delete items that don't exist on the source".

    13. Before you start there should be a tiny little green light that say's the drive will be bootable. If it's red, you screwed up, start over.

    14. This the final step. Hit the clone button, it will copy all the files from the Apple USB disk but leave the bootable files on your USB disk alone. It will copy and than it will verify. If everything went OK, you'll get a message that it was successful.

    You now should have a working bootable copy with iLife installed on it. I've done it twice and booted several times from it, it works perfectly.

    Good luck!
     

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