Help, letters vanishing?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by gothique11, Nov 11, 2007.

  1. gothique11 macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2007
    Hi, I don't know if anyone has ever seen something like this -- I certainly haven't.

    My Mac (17" iMac G5 1.9Ghz 1Gb Ram Tiger 10.4.10) has been acting really weird recently.

    One of the weirdest things is having letters vanish from the Finder as well as from the menus.

    I've included a snap shot of what I'm seeing. Is my iMac on the way out, or is there something I can do to fix things. I tried disk utility (repair permissions and verify disk) and I also tried this Tech tool thingy that came with the computer, but it says every test passes.


    If anyone can suggest anything to help, that would be greatly appreciated.

    Thnx in advance,

    --Natalie :)
  2. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    Weird bit is your finder window seeming to have all the letters - just not displaying in the correct places. I see lower-case "i"s missing in some lines, but present in others.

    That kinda kills off my bad font-set idea.

    If you open text edit or any other text program - is your alphabet intact there?
  3. gothique11 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2007
    Yep, it works in the text editor. This has happened a few times in the last few days.

    If I restart my iMac everything seems to be fixed. And then, it will work fine for a while and then the letters start vanishing in the finder after a little while; and sometimes, there is no problems at all for a day or so and then the letters vanish. It's really weird and random.

    I tried checking the fonts, and they seem to be fine.
  4. gothique11 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2007
    yay, things are vanishing again. I forgot to mention this before, but this happened last time too.

    My time and wireless net work in the Menu bar on the top have vanished, again! I found out how to put them back on, but why do they vanish.

    And now letters are vanishing in the finder, in the menu bar, and fun stuff like that (text types in normally, I can run word or text edit and read full documents -- just letters, as in the picture above, keep getting eaten away!

    I have no idea what it is. Or why, when I restart my computer. It will work. It's been three full restarts since my last problem. Three whole times nothing happened, the iMac hummed a long with out seeming to have any problem -- then snap! It's messed up.

    It's really weird. Upon restart, the letters appear again, but the missing time and wireless connection icons are still gone, and I have to re-set them by hand.

    Does anyone have even a clue what's going on?

    If my iMac is on the way out, i want to know so I can be sure to start backing up. Something I think I'm going to do soon -- it's going to take a ton of disks. Way too many disks.

    And then the question is, if it's on it's way out, is it fixable or do I have to buy another mac (something I don't have money for).

    This really sux.

  5. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2007
    I'm pretty certain that the problems you're having are not hardware problems. It is sounding like you have software problems. At this point, I'd back up what you have, and do a fresh install of your operating system. (Tiger or Leopard - whatever you currently have)

    A far easier way of backing up would be the purchase of an external USB or Firewire drive - and back up everything you want on there. It will allow you to do a "clean install" on your computer, and once everything is moved back, you'll have a second backup should you have a "real failure" (hardware) down the road.

    I just did a quick search, and I found some decent 200GB usb drives from 70 dollars and up. Depending on how much you have to back up - it'll be even cheaper for a smaller one.

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