Macbook w/ Leopard stuck on grey screen

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by mrtimnus, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. mrtimnus macrumors newbie

    Jul 10, 2008
    Hi everyone. Unfortunately this is my first post on here and I have to be a negative nancy. :(

    I got my macbook a couple of months ago and installed Leopard as soon as I got it. I have not had any problems with it until tonight. I was using ITunes, ICal and Word when all of a sudden the computer froze. I turned off the computer and turned it back on and it made the chime and than froze at the grey screen, not spinny icon or apple symbol at all. I let it sit for a while and nothing happened. At that point I began frantically searching the web for advice. I had a friend who this happened to not to long ago and he lost all of his files. I tried resetting my PRAM but it has had no affect. I have found lots of posts that have been helpful but it doesn't seem like any of them have experienced my specific problem.
    At one point, I don't know how, I was able to make it to the Leopard Installation disk menu. It said that I could not reinstall leopard because I do not have mac os 10.4 on my computer. I read somewhere that someone said my only option is to erase Leopard and reinstall it which would unfortunately cause me to lose all of my data.
    I read somewhere else that I could hook up the firewire between my computer and another one and transfer my data before erasing the operating system. However, at this point I am holding down the T button on boot up but it is still remaining at the grey screen.

    Can anyone help me?
  2. jaikob macrumors 6502


    Jul 1, 2008
    Freeland, MI
    Well, if you boot up the leopard install DVD, go to Disk Utility, and check to see if your drive is listed, try to repair the permissions, if the disk is not showing, sorry to say your drive puked. To backup your files "Assuming you did not use the file vault feature" you can boot the install dvd with an external drive attached, go to disk utility, and mount both "Macintosh HD" and your external drive.

    Then close disk utility.

    Open Terminal and type:

    cd /Volumes
    Note: Commands are case sensitive, and the V is capital for a reason :p

    The Type:

    ls -a
    You should see both macintosh HD and your external drive. We will call the external drive "backup" for now (if you did not see your drives, you did not mount them through disk utility), but be sure to replace backup with whatever your drive is called, including capital letters. if your drive has spaces in the name use quotes, for example: cd "Time Machine Backups"

    cd /Volumes/Macintosh*/Users/
    ls -a
    Find out what your folder is called, and replace it with YOURUSERNAME:
    cd /Volumes/Macintosh*/Users/YOURUSERNAME/
    then Type:

    cp * /Volumes/backup
    Wait for a prompt to return in the terminal, that will let you know that it is done.

    What you did is mounted a backup drive through a unix prompt, and copied all of your files in your home directory to the backup drive. This makes installing leopard reliable without losing your files.

    If you did use file vault, Im sorry :(

    Hope this helps you, it has helped me a lot in the past, I am a linux developer, and sware by the prompt.
  3. mrtimnus thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 10, 2008
    I don't think I used file vault but here is exactly what is going on. I boot up from the leopard disk and it goes to the installer. I run disk utility and it shows this:
    111.8 GB Hitachi HTS5R
    Matshita DVD-R UJ-857E
    Mac OS X Upgrade DVD

    I click on the 111.8 GB thing and hit repair disk. I then get this message:
    "Verify and Repair volume "disk1s2""
    Checking Journaled HFS Plus Volume.
    Invalid B-tree node size
    Volume check failed.
    Error: Filesystem verify or repair failed"

    I've tried booting up with a fire wire attached to another computer but it doesn't show anything. How exactly should I connect it to another computer. I've tried just to do the firewire thing but it doesn't show up on my other computer.
  4. jaikob macrumors 6502


    Jul 1, 2008
    Freeland, MI
    Invalid B-tree node size typically means a corrupted filesystem either by unclean mounting/unmounting, software, or hardware failure/problems, don't lose hope, you can still get your data back with the method above.

    You cannot plug another computer and transfer, you must use an "External Hard drive" for the backups for my way of backing up above to work.
    Unfortunately I do not know a fix for that filesystem error, try searching the forums for "Invalid B-tree node size"

    You might want to run it into a genius bar if you have the mac under warranty.
  5. bdherring macrumors newbie

    Jan 26, 2009

    Hi I'm wondering if you ever resolved the issue and if so (or if not I guess) what it was...

    I've had the exact same thing happen.

Share This Page