Fortunately, fixing my computer turned out to be incredibly simple.
First off, here’s what happened. I was in the middle of doing an upgrade when something failed. So, I tried to reboot the machine. No go. Uh-oh. No boot. The machine wouldn’t boot AT ALL! Ack!!!!
So, the first step was to restart off of the old drive that had 10.4. Rebooting the computer, and holding down the Control key when the computer started up, allowed me to select which drive to boot off of. So, I get the computer started, and 10.4 runs fine. (On an aside, 10.4 definitely feels dated after using Leopard for just 3 months! And 10.4 booted a faster). Next is to try to repair the disk. No problems there. Still didn’t help. Before going any further, I decided that I’d make a backup copy of the bad disk, just in case. Carbon Copy Cloner did a great job of making a copy of the drive to a backup disk.
Next is time to bring out the big guns. I pulled my Leopard install disks, and boot off of the install disks. Then, I ran the disk utilities on there. Do a disk repair, and do a permissions repair. Bleech. No go.
At this point, I decided ‘to heck with it, just reinstall’.
That’s where things got interesting 🙂
I ran the install program on the DVD, and because there were already files on the drive, it brought up a list of options. One of the options was something called ‘Archive and Restore’. This option takes what is on the install drive, copies it to a separate directory, installs the OS, then copies over the old data into the new system. Well, what the heck, I’ve got nothing to lose, I tried it.
Can we say ‘it worked!?!’
Even though I had 10.5.1, and was installing 10.5.0, ALL of my programs got copied and restored. My settings, my accounts, EVERYTHING! Oh, did I mention that my programs were copied and restored correctly, to? The only problem I had was that my soundcard drive didn’t make it, but that was easily restored.
One thing that helped this process is that OS X does not have a concept of a registry. All configurations are stored in files in specific areas.
Yes, I love my mac. I can’t imagine going back to Windows as my home desktop computer. With the news today that Roland basically purchased Cakewalk and Intuit showing off a decent version of Quicken for the mac, I’m not sure that I will have any reason to keep my PC virtual machine around at all!