Warning: Installing Boot Camp may wipe out your entire hard drive

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Dannoo, Oct 25, 2008.

  1. Dannoo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #1
    So I bought a brand new MBP this week and today tried to install Windows XP Pro using the instructions found on the Mac website. I ran Boot Camp Assistant, had it create a 32GB partition, and then rebooted. I entered the Windows install but it only listed a 130GB partition as being available to format to NTFS (which may or may not have been the size of my remaining OS X partition)

    So I ended up canceling the installation and it rebooted the system. All I get now is a blinking cursor. Holding the option key only lists a Windows OS, of course which was never installed.

    After describing this to the Apple Tech person, he simply said all my data is gone...I stupidly had been saving my photo files onto the HD, not thinking I would have a catastrophic incident within a week of paying $3000 for a new laptop.

    Just a word of warning.
     
  2. scienide09 macrumors 65816

    scienide09

    Joined:
    May 5, 2007
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    I'm sorry for your data loss. That sucks, especially if the photos are irreplaceable.

    However, I don't see what the price of the computer nor the fact that it's brand new has to do with your user error. The Boot Camp installation guide released by Apple clearly states that you should back up all data before using the program.
     
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #3
    I have to agree. It's amazing how many user errors are blamed on hardware or software or tech support or Apple, in general. The most basic rule of computing is: back up your data! Sorry for your loss, but hopefully, you'll make backups in the future a top priority, as they should be.
     
  4. Dannoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #4
    You're right, I am just bitter, though I thought Boot Camp installation was fairly routine. But seriously, doesn't part of the extra price go into some error checking (to answer my own question...yes, because I've never had major problems with Mac software until now)? It's not like I was breezing through menus and accidentally gave the OK to format the entire drive. I did just talk to another AppleCare person and he thought if there was a problem, it might have been the disc I used, which was a (legit) Business version of XP Pro, and may not have been SP2. It would've been nice for Boot Camp Assistant to recognize that and prevent the restart into installation...Anyway, I noticed that some other threads had mentioned similar problems. So just for references sake.
     
  5. Dannoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #5
    Yes, we should ideally always have a reliable backup 1TB drive (or several) and Time Machine running, but the blame is on the software design here. You should not have to worry about losing your data doing a well-supported procedure following the most initial basic steps, anymore than you should have to backup your data everytime you want to change your system date in Vista, even though it requires a UAC prompt.
     
  6. Dannoo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #6
    I should reiterate I'm not calling for a boycott on Apple...I'm just saying, it was kind of a rude awakening to have more complicated installations and such go without a hitch in my past experience, and then to suddenly have this happen with little warning. I noticed there were a few posts about similar symptoms, so hopefully this comes up in a search for this particular boot camp problem (though the applecare rep couldn't say that the version of Windows XP used in this case was the actual problem...but I'm not going to try that disc again).
     
  7. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #7
    No matter how trivial or routine, doing anything that can have an effect on your whole system, such as installing software, partitioning hard drives, etc. calls for a backup. If I proceed without a backup, I'm on my own. Even if you had a backup from days or weeks ago, you wouldn't be faced with total loss of your data. This is especially true with a brand new computer, where you haven't fully tested it to make sure there are no manufacturing defects. Personally, I wouldn't put ANY data on a new computer until I had installed and configured all the software I wanted, then made a backup of the "clean" customized, configured system. But that's just me....
     
  8. reclusivemonkey macrumors 6502

    reclusivemonkey

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire, UK
    #8
    No. Resizing partitions isn't routine. I too am sorry for your loss, but from the steps you describe I'm having a hard time understanding how you lost OSX; the Windows setup disk didn't get to the installation stage, and therefore you should of just had two partitions; one blank one and one with OSX. However I've never tried Boot Camp so I don't know. I have however previously worked in a computer recycling centre and know partitioning can be very destructive. Always proceed with caution and make sure everything is backed up.
     
  9. allbrokeup macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #9
    Boot from the Install DVD, Reformat to Mac OS Extended (J), install Mac OS X Leopard again. That is what happened to me the first time I tried to install Windows XP. I hate that OS with such a vindictive passion, it's a wonder Microsoft can't feel it :D. Vista, even though it is thoroughly second rate, it is a GUI installer, so it can go on without a hitch. The DOS installer with XP always confuses me, I ended up formatting my 750GB Mac OS X Partition to FAT32 or FAT16, and the other Boot Camp one to NTFS. Don't ask me how, but I did, and that is what fixed it.

    Cheers!

    P.S. It IS a cow when you lose all your stuff, but, A good idea is to buy loads of Dual Layer DVD discs and run a backup of your most important stuff every two months. It is a much cheaper method of backing up - except they aren't rewritable, so an External HDD is a good way to go. Like me, I have 5 1TB External HDD's. All almost full. :D:D:D:D
     

Share This Page