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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Repair OSX Leopard with OSX Lion


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stockwell

 
Member Since: Dec 21, 2010
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Hi guys,

I bought a macbook laptop off of craigslist a few months ago and lately, I've been running into some pretty serious issues. I got it for a good price, but unfortunately the seller didn't give me anything besides the computer itself. More specifically, an operating system/repair CD.

I'd like to check and repair my permissions, but since I don't have the CD it's not really an option. This might be a dumb question, but would it be possible to repair my computer (OSX Leopard) with my friends OSX Lion CD safely? (becomes a Leopon? lol) but seriously, I don't know anyone with a Leopard CD at the moment and I need to have it fixed soon for school. I just want to repair my computer and have it function correctly. I'm not talking about upgrading Leopard to Lion.

My computer specs :
Mac OS X 10.5.8, 2.16 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 1 GB 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM

Here are my computer symptoms if you have any ideas :
1.) Disk Utilities won't open. When I try to, I see the icon jump up and down on the dock but then it disappears.
2.) Software updates don't work. When I go to Apple>Software Update... the loading bar freezes about 1/3 of the way through and never finishes.
3.) I have trouble installing programs. When trying to mount a .dmg, I'm sometimes met with an "Input/output error" message. I noticed it happens mostly with large programs. (e.g. Adobe Illustrator and After Effects from Adobe.com)
In the case that I am able to mount a .dmg and open the installer, the buttons (e.g. Go Back, Continue) are often grayed out thus making it impossible to install (e.g. with Mac's Wireless Mouse Software Update)
4.) It randomly becomes very slow. Even when only one program is open it can feel very sluggish at times. Usually a fresh restart fixes it.

That's all I can think of at the top of my head.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks,
-SW
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pigoo3

 
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Mac Specs: 13" MB 2.4ghz, 2gig ram, OS 10.7.5

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Three quick thoughts:

- Many of the symptoms you describe...may relate to a "dying" hard drive.
- As far as Disk Utility...it may or may not be installed. It's always installed with an OS install...but maybe the previous owner deleted it or something. Forget about the Disk Utility "short-cut" in the dock...go to your hard drive...Applications Folder...then the Utilities Folder...and see if Disk Utility is there.
- Regarding repairing permissions. You can repair almost all permission issues without having an OS Install disk. But you do have to have Disk Utility installed to do it.

HTH,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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stockwell

 
Member Since: Dec 21, 2010
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Thanks for the reply Nick.

I hope its not a dying hard drive... I just checked and "Disk Utility" was there (Applications>Utilities). I got it to open but it's been stuck on "Gathering disk information...".

Now that I think of it, I remember seeing this screen before and I remember it was stuck on "Gathering disk information..." for hours.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockwell View Post
Thanks for the reply Nick.

I hope its not a dying hard drive... I just checked and "Disk Utility" was there (Applications>Utilities). I got it to open but it's been stuck on "Gathering disk information...".

Now that I think of it, I remember seeing this screen before and I remember it was stuck on "Gathering disk information..." for hours.
Really really slow operations like this can be an indication of a hard drive that's dying (or a hard drive that is almost full). A dying hard drive really isn't a big deal...IF...you have all of your important stuff backed up. It's only a BIG DEAL...if a hard drive has already died...and you cannot recover your files.

Replacing a hard drive in a MacBook is not too difficult to replace...and they're not that expensive either. The only additional hassle is...you NEED an OS install disk to install the OS on the new hard drive.

I would suggest backing up all of your important files you have on your MacBook ASAP...because that hard drive could completely die at ANY TIME...including 5 seconds after you read this!!! Then you can decide is you want to replace the HD...and purchase an OS install disk. I would recommend getting a OS 10.6 Snow Leopard disk.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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stockwell

 
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O_O oh wow, I'll start backing up my stuff when I get home.

The macbook hard drive is almost full (20 GB's left, 250 GB's total). Is there anything else I could try before chucking the HD? Right now money is kind of tight for me and I'd like to save it if possible. If I buy a Leopard CD, do you think repairing the permissions could fix it? Or is this HD destined for death?

And if it really comes down that, would my western digital passport external HD fit inside my macbook? or do macs have a specific HD I need to get?

Sorry for all the questions. I'm not much of a computer guy.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockwell View Post

The macbook hard drive is almost full (20 GB's left, 250 GB's total). Is there anything else I could try before chucking the HD? Right now money is kind of tight for me and I'd like to save it if possible. If I buy a Leopard CD, do you think repairing the permissions could fix it? Or is this HD destined for death?

And if it really comes down that, would my western digital passport external HD fit inside my macbook? or do macs have a specific HD I need to get?

Sorry for all the questions. I'm not much of a computer guy.
An almost full hard drive could also be responsible for the problems you are experiencing. 20gigs free on a 250gig HD is around 92% full.

You can do two things:

- simply get rid of all the "junk" on the hard drive if it is truly full of "junk" (videos that you don't watch, music you don't listen to, applications & games you don't use or play, etc., etc.)
- or back all of these items up on your external drive...then delete these items from your Macbooks drive.

You NEED to free up a bunch more space...so you can figure out if the almost full HD is the problem or if it's the HD potentially dying. Once you have created more free space...then run Disk Utility & repair permissions.

HTH,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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stockwell

 
Member Since: Dec 21, 2010
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Alright, I'm giving it a shot right now. I'm moving my files to my external hard drive as we speak to make space but I'm running in to a lot of errors.

Most of file transfers fail and say...

"The Finder cannot complete the operation because some data in "FILE NAME" could not be read or written. (Error code -36)".

When I hit "OK" on the error message, it returns to the transfer window and shows the blue transfer bar 99% filled. It also says under the bar "5 seconds left" but the transfer never completes no matter how much time passes- it's stuck. The only way to close the window (because hitting the x doesn't work) is to force quit "Finder".

I'm stumped.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockwell View Post
Alright, I'm giving it a shot right now. I'm moving my files to my external hard drive as we speak to make space but I'm running in to a lot of errors.
Do you have anything you can just straight-up delete...so you can immediately free up some space?

If not (and you need to back everything up without deleting first)...just do a little bit at a time...and then immediately delete what you just copied. Don't try to do a whole bunch of stuff all in one shot.

Also remember that you're not trying to backup everything...just your files & data (MS Office files, music, video, photos, etc.). Stuff that cannot be replaced. Any applications you have you should be able to reinstall later from your original disks.

There is still a possibility that the hard drive is dying. We're doing this exercise first to see if the almost full HD is the problem.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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