Is my HD dying? Do I have a virus? Am I just ignorant?

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Please, I beg you all, help me. I'm so close to getting my Macbook and flushing it down the toilet.

My Macbook did the whole 'gray screen with flashing folder and question mark' at start-up when I was in Corsica. I did all the disk utility stuff- it looked like I had to re-install Tiger. As I was abroad and didn't have my OS Tiger disks with me, I thought it would be a good time to upgrade so I bought Leopard, erased my hard-drive completely, and installed it. After install it kept freezing at the blue screen during start-up so I erased and installed again. I've now got it working, but...

The OS seems less stable and crashes more frequently, to the extent that nothing responds so I have to turn off the Macbook. After that, when I power it back on, it just sits on the gray screen with the apple symbol and spinning wheel. Forever. So.. I re-open disk utility, run verify, there's some minor category tree fault or something, so I try to repair it.. "dosk can't be unmounted". Fine. I restart and run disk utility AGAIN. Now I can repair the volume. After disk utility says 'volume is repaired and is OK', I run the Repair Disk permissions which repairs some problem with 'Airport Utility permissions'. After all this, I exit disk utility, exit the Leopard installer and choose to restart, and FINALLY it all works again..

This happens EVERY TIME my computer crashes (often). I can't keep on doing that whole disk utility stuff once a day, it's driving me insane. Please- any ideas what's going on??

Thanks
 
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I want to say there's something wrong with your hard drive. Flashing folder with question mark usually means something along those lines, and it sounds like it's just been limping along since then.
 

dtravis7


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I agree with Skaheadpunk. It really sounds like the Hard Drive is failing. One way to test all the hardware is run the Apple Hardware Test. Run the extended test. See if anything wrong is found with the Hard Drive.

Here is a URL that shows you how to run that test on an Intel Mac.

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1509
 
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lots more you can do to troubleshoot


install smartreporter... it can warn of drive failures before they happen.


also look here for useful info.
 
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Thanks everyone. Assuming that my Hard-drive is on the brink (I didn't know hard-drives could do that; I thought they just died..) can I change it myself or do I have to pay one of the Apple guys loads of money..?
 
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OK - I've downloaded smartreporter, run it, and there's no problem according to it. I've run the apple hardware test (extended) and found no problem either. I've reset the PRAM, etc.. I just don't get it. My Macbook is getting slower and slower (the spinning wheel of death now keeps popping up for 30+secs at a time).. I know Macs aren't supposed to have viruses but to me this has all the hallmarks of a virus
 

cwa107


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OK - I've downloaded smartreporter, run it, and there's no problem according to it. I've run the apple hardware test (extended) and found no problem either. I've reset the PRAM, etc.. I just don't get it. My Macbook is getting slower and slower (the spinning wheel of death now keeps popping up for 30+secs at a time).. I know Macs aren't supposed to have viruses but to me this has all the hallmarks of a virus

It's not that they're not "supposed to" - there is none, period. A computer virus is not an unfortunate happenstance that just occurs as it would in humans or animals. It's a deliberately crafted piece of software - and so far, no one has created one.

Sometimes a failing hard drive can be undetectable to diagnostic software. It happens. In this case, it sounds very much like that's exactly what's going on.

At any one point, did you drop into single user mode and run fsck?
 

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