Restoring a hard drive if it fails

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Trt740, Jan 14, 2014.

  1. Trt740 macrumors newbie

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    #1
    No flash drive with an OS came with my new macbook. So if my macbook SSD fails how do I restore the OS? Im new with mac so what should I do in the event this would happen?
     
  2. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #2
    the SSD has a partition called "recovery" partition. If your MBA won't boot or you need to restore you boot from the recovery partition and then you can re-download the OS.
     
  3. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

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  4. Trt740, Jan 14, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2014

    Trt740 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    You cannot reboot from a dead drive as far as I know, or am I wrong. I am wondering if the SSD drive flat out dies. I'm not talking about restoring the SSD. I mean if it dies and I want to replace it. Also, I thought the Maverick was an upgraded, so if it dies and you put a new drive in what do you upgrade with? I'm confused.
     
  5. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #5
    DeltaMac's link explains how you recover when the SSd dies - you boot internet recovery and it has enough code to begin download from Apple servers.

    However, the current MBAs have a non-standard SSD which is not available except from Apple, so you would need to take it to Apple to have the SSd replaced and they would re-load the OS as well.
     
  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #6
    Newer Macs like yours have Internet recovery built into the system firmware. So you would install the new drive then common-option-r boot to Internet recovery and the OS can be downloaded from Apple's servers directly onto your new, blank drive.

    The problem with this approach, and you touched on it, is this will install whatever OS came from the factory. So if you bought a machine with Mountain Lion, then updated to Mavericks, an Internet recovery would only get you Mountain Lion. You could of course then start Mountain Lion and install Mavericks from the App Store afterwards.

    A second, and better, option is to get a cheap external USB3 drive and use that with the included Time Machine backup software to make regular, full system backups.

    If your drive ever dies, you just pop a new one in and option key boot to the Time Machine backup drive and format the new disk then click "restore" and the entire OS and all your apps and data are put back on the new drive. This option will get you right back to Mavericks with everything like it was the last time you backed up.

    If you don't already have an external drive, you really should get one to use for Time Machine backups so you never lose data.
     
  7. Trt740 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    Thanks guys for the info, and I was looking at one of these.
    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/SSDAP116K240/
     
  8. robvas macrumors 68020

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    #8
    This is not true. I've done an internet restore on my 2012 and Mavericks was installed.

    Either way you can make a USB installer for Mavericks to use in case you don't have access to a FAST internet connection to do an internet restore. Very painful over slow DSL or wireless.
     
  9. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #9
    It's always good to have a bootable recovery method, whether a USB installer or a bootable clone. I prefer the bootable clone route as I have the full system available and don't have to re-install the OS, apps, data, etc.
     
  10. Weaselboy, Jan 15, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2014

    Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #10
    Yes, it is true. Internet recovery is tied to your serial number. Apple's servers will see your serial number came with Mountain Lion for example, and they will give you Mountain Lion.

    If you have a machine that came with ML and recovery gave you Mavs, that is because there was an existing Mavs recovery partition on the drive. If you had wiped the entire drive, including the recovery partition, you would have gotten ML.

    See the excerpt below from this Apple tech article.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. robvas macrumors 68020

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    #11
    Ahh. When I installed Mavericks it must have created a new recovery partition that installed Mavericks.
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #12
    Yes, that is exactly what happens. Each OS version has its own recovery partition version.

    In your defense, Apple has made all this as confusing as all get out. :)
     
  13. Trt740 thread starter macrumors newbie

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  14. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #14
    Is you Macbook Air new? Those OWC devices only fit the 2010 and 2011 models. Apple changed the connector inn the newer versions, and OWC has not made a model for those yet. I have seen forum posts here from 2010 and 2011 owners who used the OWC replacement and liked it.
     
  15. Trt740 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #15
    2011 Model purchased in Jan of 2012
     
  16. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #16
    That OWC device should do the trick for you then.
     
  17. Trt740 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #17
    I like that it converts your old drive into a USB attached drive.
     
  18. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    #18
    You could always redownload the Mavericks installer when you're computer is still working and create a USB bootable installer drive.
     

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