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chas_m

 
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Member Since: Jan 22, 2010
Location: Victoria, BC
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I'd follow chscag's advice on this one, but just wanted to add that what happened when you rebooted was that your wife's Home folder was corrupted, so the OS by default created a new one.

You can check this by looking in the Users folder of the damaged HD (preferably NOT by booting it up, but by mounting it on another machine via Firewire Target Mode). Normally there are at least two folder in Users; one with the user's name (their home folder) and another one called Shared. You may see that you have three, with two of them being similarly named.

If that's the case, then its quite likely that all or most of the data in the original account is fine and recoverable.
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