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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

System discs


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Eljeffo64

 
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Just wondering; my new iMac didn't come with any OS system/repair discs; is this the norm these days? If so, what happens if the system crashes??
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cwa107

 
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That is correct. There is a recovery mode your machine can go into, and if needed, that recovery mode can download the entire OS over the Internet (i.e. in the event of a hard disk failure). Ordinarily, the system can be restored via the recovery partition - but it can also do so via the firmware and a download.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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cwa107

 
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More info here:

OS X: About OS X Recovery

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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Slydude

 
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Newer Macs (models that shipped with either 10.7 or 10.8 installed) do not come with system restore/OS DVDs as they have in the past. The drive contains a hidden recovery partition that can be used to attempt to repair the drive, reinstall the OS, or reload data/information from a backup. Here's a bit of information that might explain things better.

OS X: About OS X Recovery

The OS X Recovery Partition: What It Is, Why It's There and How to Remove It | Mactuts+

The downside of this arrangement is that doing a complete reinstall is that requires net access unless you have created a USB drive with the installer. My suggestion would be to do the following:

1. Make sure you have a plan to back up date regularly. If you use Time Machine keep in mind that even with the system files included you cannot boot directly from a time machine backup.

2. To get around the inability to boot from a Time Machine backup you can either reinstall the OS then load the remainder of system and backup data from Time Machine or "clone" your hard drive and boot from the clone in an emergency. Assuming the clone is periodically kept current you can boot from it and get the system back up and running.

Sylvester Roque Former Contributing Editor About This Particular Macintosh

"Got Time to breathe. You got time for music." Denver Pyle as Briscoe Darling
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Eljeffo64

 
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Thanks, very helpful :-)
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Slydude

 
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You're Welcome. Appologies for the long windiness.

BTW if you go the cloning route test the clone by booting from it and attempting to launch a program or two. I have had one clone bork up by not accepting my password. Didn't discover that issue till I needed the clone. Don't remember what program I was using at the time.

Sylvester Roque Former Contributing Editor About This Particular Macintosh

"Got Time to breathe. You got time for music." Denver Pyle as Briscoe Darling
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Eljeffo64

 
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OK; quick sanity check - i've just made a bootable clone on an xtnal usb hdd, time machine is set up and running on a network hdd. If the worse happens one day in the distant future (after my imac extended guarantee and support has finished ) I can boot on the clone drive and clone back to a working drive inside the imac (or on the existing one if it's healthy) then use a time machine backup to restore to the latest config and look. Am I correct in my understanding please?

My web access is poor and I get really bad dl speeds (half a meg best) so a complete re-install from the net would be a pain!

I don't want to re-clone all the time so I'm hoping this one with the latest time machine file is adequate :-)

Thanks
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Eljeffo64

 
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Shame you can't boot with time machine.....
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chscag

 
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What no one has mentioned is that you can create a bootable flash drive of Mountain Lion thereby avoiding having to download it again from a slow connection.

Follow these instructions to create a bootable Mountain Lion flash drive: LINK
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Eljeffo64

 
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I'd still have to dl the osx file in the first place to do this though? (and presumably, pay for it from the App store) Why is this method better than using a clone copy (that I have already on a bootable external drive)?
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You should not have to pay again from the App store. And why is it better than a clone....? It's not better than a clone if you need to restore to a new hard drive because of some problem with the old drive. But if for some reason, you wanted to do a fresh install, your clone would be useless. That's where the bootable flash drive can be used. However, it's up to you.
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If you purchased Mountain Lion, go into the App Store, hold down the Option key and hjit purchases. ML should come up and you can download again f.o.c.and proceed to make a USB thumb drive which will be bootable.

Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!
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Eljeffo64

 
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Didn't purchase it though, it came loaded on my new imac... Plus, as said earlier, my internet speeds here are rubbish so sitting on an osx download for a week while not being able to use the connection for other stuff is not my idea of fun. Hence me taking the clone drive route as suggested by Slydude and my previous post checking my understanding of how it will work.
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cwa107

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eljeffo64 View Post
Didn't purchase it though, it came loaded on my new imac... Plus, as said earlier, my internet speeds here are rubbish so sitting on an osx download for a week while not being able to use the connection for other stuff is not my idea of fun. Hence me taking the clone drive route as suggested by Slydude and my previous post checking my understanding of how it will work.
Even though you didn't purchase it, the mere fact that you registered the machine with your AppleID, should tie the purchase record to your account. You can find out really easily - just open the Purchases tab in the Mac App Store. It should show OS X Mountain Lion as available for download.

But I think you're WAY over-thinking this. If you have a bootable clone, that should be fine simply to get the machine back to a solid baseline, which is what you'd ultimately need to do in the event of a catastrophic HDD failure.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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Eljeffo64

 
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cwa, the thread responses took me away from my simple thinking (clone drive) I have no desire to do anything over the minimum :-). I was looking for some "expert" confirmation that my bootable cloned drive (done) plus time machine files were a good way to go; think you just confirmed that above.

The earlier posts in the thread re the ability to dl the OS was something I was unaware of anyway so; learned a little :-)

Thanks

Phew!!
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