Cousin tried to install OSX over OSX - help!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by dirtengineer, Jul 2, 2008.

  1. dirtengineer macrumors newbie

    Jul 2, 2008
    I just got this frantic email from my uncle - hoping someone can help. He bought his daughter a new macbook for birthday/graduation. She had the new machine up and running, then saw CDs for OSX, which she had not idea what it was..... and proceeded to install. His email follows:

    "Just the plain Jane white one - but I added a Gig of ram to get it to 2GB. Got her a cheap printer too.

    Anyhoo - we went to a party across the street - and Kenzie set up the MacBook. She said all was well - she was connected to the Internet...etc, etc. There really isn't much software on there, right ?

    Anyway - she picks up the Mac OS X disks - and figures- what the heck is OSX - I'll install it.

    I heard her say that - and I was like - WHAT !! You're installing the operating system over the operating system ?

    So she cancelled out of it - now it won't boot at all and the disk 1 is in the drive.

    Can we reinstall it now ? How do I get it to boot to the CD drive - if that's even how it works ?"
  2. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus


    Jan 15, 2006
    The Kop
    Hold down "C" on boot and it should get it to boot from the disk. Then you will be able to reinstall the OS.

    Warning: Doing so will make any data that is still on the drive very hard/impossible to retrieve. If you need to get data off the computer I would suggest connecting a firewire cable to another mac and boot up the affected machine while holding down "T" this will (hopefully) mount the computer as drive on the other mac enabling you to copy any data back off the machine.
  3. vandozza macrumors 6502a


    Jun 14, 2006
    1. Turn off MacBook.
    2. Turn on MacBook while holding down the "c" button. (Should boot off the CD drive.)
    3. Do a quick format of the HDD, and reinstall OSX using the default options (or you can customize OSX, remove unnecessary languages/printer drivers etc if you like.)

    This should bring the MacBook back to "out of the box" condition.
    There may be some additional software, such as iWork trials on one of the original system discs, but this can be installed later.

    Standard disclaimer - this will erase EVERYTHING on the MacBook's HDD, if there is anything crucial on there, maybe best to look for another solution!
  4. CrzyCanuck72 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 10, 2003
    it sounds like she had the computer up and running for all of 20 minutes before she did that, so there probably isn't too much data that needs salvaging... I would just redo the installation procedure like the others said, and then maybe find someone who can help her through the basics of a Mac... cause next thing you know she's going to be renaming her home folder.

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