So here's my situation... Short version: in disc utility I'm only seeing my Windows partition after repairing disc and repairing permissions. I've also reset NVRAM. Held down power button before start up. I think my HDD is dead. Any point in trying to reinstall from an older backup? BTW, can anyone tell me whether Time Machine backups -- whether from my account or my wife's, will back up the whole drive? I'm worried we might lose some of her stuff because she rarely uses this computer (also rarely long enough to have it auto-backup while logged into her account) EDIT: Which leads me to my question about Mac support. There's no Apple store within even four or five hours of my city. Some dealers, etc. The system is still well under warranty, but outside the three months of "free phone support." So how do I go about getting warranty service? In the end, this is pretty much forcing my hand into an AppleCare purchase 'cause I don't want this hassle again, but until such time as I've got that AppleCare box in front of me, do I want to call Apple? Do I want to call their authorized service people? THE LONG VERSION Starting up my computer this morning, I was met with a grey screen that didn't seem to go anywhere. So I turned the computer off and restarted. All was great. Came back from work tonight, got the same issue. My wife tells me she had it today too (she almost never uses the iMac -- laptop all the way for her). Try restarting, no luck. Try again, and OSX starts up. Check something online for her and then go into the dashb...o......a.......... the computer is totally locked up. Restart, do a little bit in Firefox and then go to dashboard again and it dies once more. After the second dashboard crash, it wouldn't fully log in to the point where I had any control. So I restart, try a variety of the "fixes" listed above... and I realize that every time I try to boot the computer, I'm making less forward progress. Figured disk utility would help, and now I don't even see my "Macintosh HD". I see the drive, but only the XP partition listed along with it. At this stage I'm at a loss for what to do.. and possibly also at a loss for getting the OSX install disc out of the drive. Very frustrating times for me lately with Mac hardware. The MacBook's got a bum battery -- turned into a 2/3 battery (i.e: shuts down unannounced at 37% and is out of warranty and beyond the battery replacement program window) shortly after my hard drive cratered in it. I guess the positive is that that crash convinced me to buy a big external drive for Time Machine... I wonder if it's a heat thing in this case. This comes suspicously soon after a handful (two or three) marathon sessions of Spore.