ATTENTION! Some Leopard upgrades destroy old tiger partition


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 2, 2007
This thread should be a reminder to BACKUP all your data before you upgrade to Leopard. A friend of mine and me had serious problems when we did the upgrade on different systems (a macbook and a mac mini). In both cases we had those fatal problems:
1. Leopard installer started up, and asked where leopard should be installed
2. After selecting the disk, the installer informed me, that leopard could not be installed on the disk and that a new partition must be created
3. Obviously, I didn't do that and tried to reboot tiger: The reboot did not work, tiger couldn't boot anymore.
4. Booted up with the install CDs and checked the disk with disk utility: Didn't work: It reports that the catalog is damaged

I was lucky to have a complete backup. My friend didn't... Now he hopes to get back the data by some other means.

I dont't have any idea why this was happening. I had a lot of applications on my macbook: maybe one of them caused the problem. Don't know about the state of the mac mini of my friend.

Did anybody else have those problems? It is a serious issue and if others had is as well, apple should know about that.


macrumors member
Mar 22, 2006
Yes, I have experienced the exact same problem. I also know a lot of people who have had this problem so I think Apple should really look into this.

It was not with Leopard for me but with a 10.4 restore disc. I had an external firewire drive connected to the Mac when I booted off the disc. I stopped the installer at the same point as you before choosing the install destination, but upon booting in to 10.4.10 from my internal disk, the external drive would no longer mount.

Disk Utility would find an error on the 'Volume Header' and would fix the problem but everytime I try to mount the drive it would need to be repaired again.

The installer should not have made modifications to the disk before the user chose to install so it's pretty bad programming. Fortunately I had a backup of the external drive..


macrumors 68000
Jan 18, 2005
ACK! Nasty. I've been lucky and have not seen this one, but your advice should be taken on board by everyone - ALWAYS back up before doing something major to your system - especially an operating system update.

It constantly surprises me how few people do back up regularly though - I've just had a situation this morning with a work colleague - their personal Windows PC (fortunately not their office PC) has a serious case of the galloping trojans and will no longer start. The easiest solution is to wipe the hard drive re-install the OS, but they've NEVER backed up their data, so that's not an option. :-/
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.