My dad got an iMac OS 10.6.4 and it has acted up lately and now died. It had some kernel panics, and dad was going to back up today but after a restart it won't start up. I tried to update the software, but on restart it said error so restarted again, but I don't remember if it then installed correctly or just went to normal. I have searched the web for solutions but none work. Ive done the boot from install CD but the utility couldn't repair, and the HD didn't even show for re-installation. Tried disconnecting all peripheral devices besides an apple keyboard and mouse - no luck. tried the safemode, didn't work. Started in Verbose or single-user, and saw it had command to repair. Reseated the RAM, but I think its a directory error. I couldn't find how to fix this besides backup and restore the disk, but we dont have a backup. So kinda in a catch-22. Any ideas? thoughts? or terminal commands to use to help start up? Is there a command to only start up with finder - like if other applications were running and it wants to restore them on startup, to stop those and only launch finder?