Ok, let me try this question.

I have a Macbook....built in2007. Running Lion. When I try to start up I get the chime and shortly thereafter I see the gray apple and then I get an icon like a no smoking sign....not a a question mark.

I can start up from recovery with command R and I go to Disk utility and run it and is says everything is just fine. However I do not have to option to repair permissions.

I thought I would reload Lion but there is no hard drive to load it onto. I ran an Apple service disk that was bootable...says everything is just fine.

When I quit recovery it asked me to choose a hard drive there is nothing there.

So, what is the problem? Should I reformat my hard drive? Get a new drive? Toss it all away?

Please don't tell me to go to the Apple store: I am an American in China and there is no Apple store.