How to (GULP!) format and reinstall OSX?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by NJRonbo, Jun 2, 2007.

  1. NJRonbo macrumors 68000

    Jan 10, 2007
    Having problems with a bad install of Photoshop. It has left
    pieces of its program all over my OSX and despite some great
    advice, the essential registration information cannot be removed.

    I'm thinking of just formatting my Mac and reinstalling OSX.
    Really, it's no big deal for me. It will take me a few short hours
    to complete and I'll probably find it a rather relaxing thing to do
    on my day off.

    So, besides the obvious question of exactly <i>how</i> to
    boot up and reformat/reinstall, I have other questions first....


    Fortunately, I have a .MAC account that I can backup some
    aspects of my computer.

    The main thing I need to back up is my <b>Mail</b> and every
    single bit of content in it (FOLDERS, EMAIL, ATTACHMENTS).

    1. Will .Mac take care of that? Will .Mac also automatically enter
    my COMPUTER USERNAME information as long as I provide the password?

    I also have the BACKUP that I know can be configured to back
    up and restore certain programs as well.


    Okay, in easy steps, from rebooting to inserting original install
    discs to certain things I need to look for during software install....

    2. How exactly do I go about reformatting, rebooting and
    reinstalling OSX?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Sherman Homan macrumors 6502

    Oct 27, 2006
    Before you reformat and reinstall, try making a new user account and see if the trouble shows up there. I know that most Adobe products install all kinds of other apps and utilities, but they should be fairly easy to find. When you say "essential registration information" what do you mean?
  3. TDM21 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 7, 2004
    1. There is a Mail folder in your Library folder. If you back that up then that should take care of all your Mail stuff. It might be a good idea to also backup the Preferences and Application Support folder. I would go ahead and make a physical backup of your home folder so you don't lose any of your documents, music, videos, etc.

    2. Insert your OSX disc and restart your computer. After the bong hold down the C key it boot from the disc. Click through the installer and when you see the screen for the destination click options, this will allow you to do an "Archive and Install" or "Erase and Install." The last option is probably what you want.
  4. Fox 8991 macrumors newbie

    Fox 8991

    Jun 14, 2007
    Bad Blocks

    Ya I have to do the same thing...I was looking here and was hoping to find some help specific to my problem....I have to reformat my HD b/c i have bad blocks on my Hard Drive that is causing my mac to freeze up on certain programs....I have no clue on how to back up everything that i can and reformat + reinstall...
  5. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    Try running an Archive and Install with the Preserve Users and Network Settings checkbox checked. I know from experience that clears out folders Photoshop really likes to have available... it may solve your problem without the whole erase part. (But BACK UP YOUR DATA FIRST JUST IN CASE)
  6. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Fox 8991, hard drives are cheap. If you have bad blocks then save yourself the trouble of eventually losing all your data to a hard drive failure and buy a new one now. :)
  7. Corrosive vinyl macrumors 6502

    Corrosive vinyl

    Sep 22, 2006
    I just did that exact thing yesterday (erase and install), and I was back online in about 2 hours.. try an archive and install, it fixes a lot of bugs, resets some prefs, but keeps EVERYTHING important, like your music. if you do erase and install, make sure you hit the cusomize button on step 3 I think, and get rid of printer drivers, fonts, etc. that you don't want installed!

    as long as you back up your information, like in .Mac, which you have, then you are just fine, take the plunge!

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