Really basic installation questions

nhcowboy1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 5, 2008
294
2
NH
Okay, these are, as noted, really basic install questions:

(1) I need to re-install the OS on a machine I haven't used for a while (because, yes, I really did forget the clever password :eek:). If I don't do an "erase and install", will my 3rd party app's still be there when I'm done . . . or do I really have to take the time to transfer them elsewhere first? (And, yes, in case you're wondering - when it gets to the point that I've forgotten the password, it's a pretty safe bet that I've also forgotten where the software discs are . . . .)

(2) If I close the laptop while it's running the installation program, will it actually stop and go to sleep (which is, by the way, what I want to do) - or will it continue running the program until it's done?

Thanks . . .
 

SmurfBoxMasta

macrumors 65816
Nov 24, 2005
1,350
0
I'm only really here at night.
1. Do an archive & install. This preserves all your data, and just installs a fresh copy of the OS

2. Bad news.....do NOT allow the machine to sleep, hibernate or otherwise interupt the installation process....this will instantly
FUBAR the install, and you will have to reformat & erase the entire drive to re-install the OS, which will completely destroy ALL data & everything else on the drive......
 

nhcowboy1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 5, 2008
294
2
NH
.....do NOT allow the machine to sleep, hibernate or otherwise interupt the installation process....this will instantly
FUBAR the install, and you will have to reformat & erase the entire drive to re-install the OS, which will completely destroy ALL data & everything else on the drive......
Aha! So that's why it says (somewhere) that I should back everything up even when doing an archive and install . . . !!! Thank you, SmurfBoxMasta!
 

sickmacdoc

macrumors 68020
Jun 14, 2008
2,037
1
New Hampshire
Do keep in mind that if you can find the disks (which would be necessary for an archive & install OR a erase & install) that you can reset your password from them, doing away with the necessity of reinstalling and the concerns that it raises.


BTW- Welcome to the only other NH resident I've seen on these boards!:D
 

nhcowboy1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 5, 2008
294
2
NH
Welcome to the only other NH resident I've seen on these boards!:D
Thank you!

Right, I finally remembered that it's possible to change the password from the startup disc - but my ibook fought back. I tried three different ibook & OS X startup discs - and my screen froze each time. So I finally did it from the root directory.

And that fixed the password, but left the problem of updating the primary user. And that seems to have been where I went astray . . .

So, just out of curiosity (and because I am still mildly hopeful that I might be able to fix the mess I've made) . . . exactly how would one get rid of the primary user without sabotaging all the preferences and everything? (Which is what I ended up doing, of course!)