issue - All files missing

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Sudz, Feb 19, 2015.

  1. Sudz, Feb 19, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015

    Sudz macrumors newbie

    Feb 19, 2015
    Houston... I have a problem. Just recently I had company for 3 weeks and their kids have been playing on my desktop and...

    I have no folders on my desktop ... I can't mount finder, when I do I get a dialog screen " the home folder for user isn't located in the usual place or can't be accessed..

    In Activity Manager and Disc Utility it shows the data is still stored on the hard drive but can't be accessed. If I right click on my hard drive while in Disc Utility I can open path but all folders are empty including Library.. If I click on the "home" folder I am prompted with dialog screen stating " the alias "home" can't be opened because the original can't be found... I have the option to select "delete alias" , "Fix Alias" or "OK"
    All applications on the dock can be nounted except for Finder... running Snow Leopard 10.6.8

    Shall I click on 'fix alias' - will this restore to original configuration?
    Or do any of you Mac genus's have any other suggestions? Command options?
    Also note... I am running LS but it does not appear any rules have been changed...

    Need help...Lost, Confused and Bewildered
    Thank in advance...
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Not sure what to recommend, but can offer advice for THE NEXT TIME the kids come:

    Create a NEW ACCOUNT, and leave it activated on the computer all the time, EXCEPT FOR when you are using it. Set it up to "auto log in" after a restart.

    That way, they can't get into -your- account and folders, and wreak havoc with them.

    When YOU need to use the computer, restart and log into your real account, then restart back into "the kids account" when you are done.

    After the kids leave, just delete the temporary account (until next time).

    Actually, I can think of what I would try to do if I was handed the computer in the condition that yours is in now. Just some thoughts and no promises or guarantees...

    1. Get an EXTERNAL drive, use CarbonCopyCloner to clone the contents of your internal to the external drive.

    2. Once the clone is completed, mount the drive in the finder so that just its icon is visible. Click ONE TIME on the icon to select it.

    3. Type "command-i" to bring up the get info box. In the extreme lower right hand corner, click the lock icon, then enter your administrative password.

    4. Next, in the extreme lower LEFT hand corner, check the box to "ignore ownership" on this volume.

    5. NOW, start browsing around. Try searching for "known items" you had in folders before the kids messed with it. You won't have any permissions problems because of the steps you took above. You should be able to "go anywhere on the volume" in your search.

    This process may take some time, but if the data is still on the drive, you hopefully will be able to "hunt it down", and copy it back over to where it should be.

    I'm wondering if the kids (presumably logged into your administrative account) actually threw away stuff in your home folder, tossed your data, etc. .... ?
  3. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

    Aug 28, 2012
    Between the coasts
    Ditto the above. Further...

    Have you looked in the Trash?

    If you had a Time Machine backup, you'd be able to go back in time a few weeks and restore the machine to pre-visitor condition.

    Are you sure your user account name and/or permissions haven't been messed with? Are there other user accounts on the machine that hadn't been there previously? Go to System Preferences > Users & Groups to find out.

    An attempted/botched account name change could create a situation similar to the one you describe. I've heard of more than a few cases where kids thought it was a great idea to rename iTunes Store accounts, computer user accounts, and the like.

    You may also be in a better position to assess the damages if you create and sign into a new administrative user account. System Preferences > Users & Groups. If you're lucky, all they did is trash the permissions on your user account. Permissions can be fixed.

    If you have the same problems in a newly-created admin account, then they messed with more than your user account, and you're facing a different set of potential remedies.

    Good luck, and give serious consideration to professional assistance - you don't want to dig yourself into an even deeper hole.

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