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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 00:43   #1
Neil79
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Serious mac problem, advice!

This isn't my mac but my mums, recently everytime she logged into her account it would load the desktop then straight back to the login screen. She could only login to her guest accounts!.

I couldn't fix her admin login, so i created her a new admin account which was a great deal of faffing about with command prompts and folder rights. I basically had to tell the computer it was a new system, i then copied everything over to the new account. Now a week later after everything was working brilliantly, she's turned the system on and same again straight back to the login!

I'm really starting to hate mac systems, they are a pig to fix and my mum is abit upset.

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 00:51   #2
Brian8bit
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Sounds like the infamous login loop. Tried this?

http://dltj.org/article/macosx-launc...ogin-loop-fix/
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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 00:53   #3
Neil79
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Yep when it first happened

Quote:
1. > Sudo -s no root password so i didnt have to enter mine.
2. > /sbin/mount -uw /
3. > rm /Library/Caches/com.apple.LaunchServices*
4. > reboot
But i was still not able to get into the account, i had to create another clean one... A week later it happened again, not sure why this looped login keeps happening.

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 01:05   #4
Brian8bit
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If you've tried everything without success I would just do a back up and clean install. And also reset the SMC.
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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 01:07   #5
Neil79
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She can't get into any of her accounts now

guess i'll need to create another admin.. sigh thanks anyway Brian!

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 01:18   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil79 View Post
She can't get into any of her accounts now

guess i'll need to create another admin.. sigh thanks anyway Brian!
Can't you just back up her files manually via the terminal?


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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 01:21   #7
Neil79
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Don't know how, i know enough about a mac as a childs first computer

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 09:20   #8
iraiguana
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Treat it like linux and you wont go far wrong. Should be able to find the root folder for her account, copy all of the directories below this to back up.
Reinstall.
Omit non essential software for a day at a time or so to ensure its not some buggy software you have on the system.
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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 11:47   #9
Neil79
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Linux?

lol

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 12:19   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil79 View Post
Linux?

lol
Yes - Linux. Because OS X's kernel is based on the Linux kernel - very similar.

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 13:30   #11
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You know it is possible to reinstall *without* loosing everything?

I'd try that first, get access to everything, back it up, wipe it and then go from there.
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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 16:09   #12
Neil79
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FIXED IT!

I was rather smart in the fact that when i first created the previous admin account before this looped login happened again i had made another account as a backup. I completely forgot that i had made this, so i went into the temp/backup account and looked to see what was going on. First i tried to delete the previous admin account that was broken while keeping the files. It kept on telling me, ERROR COULD NOT DELETE!. Uh oh

I then dragged the broken admin folder over to the desktop and it vanished, i tried clicking on my default apps/docs/pics YOU DO NOT HAVE AUTHORIZATION RIGHTS. Something wasn't right, even though i was admin i couldn't access anything. Nothing would appear on the desktop and applications would open and avnish.

Did a Hard Drive check, everything was ok bar two files that had bad permissions(shockwave). So i edited every single file/folder with the admin rights that i wanted for the owner. Pics/desktop/user folders the lot Suddenly the desktop appeared and about a 1000 files going right back to 2007

Cleaned up all the old apps and start up apps which went back years, then i made two seperate backup admin accounts with my own personal password. Deleted the old admin account and made the new account the home admin.

Rebooted the system not only does she now have access to all her original files she also has access to her email accounts and messangers. She was really pleased.

It looks as good as new !

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Old 22nd Mar 2011, 20:46   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ice On Fire View Post
Yes - Linux. Because OS X's kernel is based on the Linux kernel - very similar.
In before the pedants:

OS X uses the Darwin kernel which is Unix-based.


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Old 23rd Mar 2011, 12:20   #14
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I'd still take a backup of her files and start again. There's no telling how many permissions are now b0rked because of your "fix"


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Old 23rd Mar 2011, 21:03   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ice On Fire View Post
Yes - Linux. Because OS X's kernel is based on the Linux kernel - very similar.
You mean they are both based on Unix. Not mac based on linux.

Edit- Beaten. I should read the whole thread.


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Old 24th Mar 2011, 00:42   #16
Neil79
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I'd still take a backup of her files and start again. There's no telling how many permissions are now b0rked because of your "fix"
At-least my fix got her entire system up and working and she has admin rights to her system. After all she is the owner and the owner is happy!

Thanks for sarcastically saying i've broken her system

Why are there so many wind up merchants on tonight

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Old 24th Mar 2011, 00:56   #17
Brian8bit
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Did you make sure to reset all the permissions you changed to the defaults? Because if not, they're possible security holes. That's all he meant.
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Old 24th Mar 2011, 00:57   #18
Neil79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian8bit View Post
Did you make sure to reset all the permissions you changed to the defaults? Because if not, they're possible security holes. That's all he meant.
Yes

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Old 24th Mar 2011, 08:15   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skyboat View Post
In before the pedants:

OS X uses the Darwin kernel which is Unix-based.



BSD != Linux

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Old 24th Mar 2011, 18:42   #20
Neil79
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Things went from bad to worse

Went to get some DVDRS today to start backing everything up and now she can't boot at all, just a grey screen. Did a hard drive check and it's coming up with a failed volume and lots of other errors. Cannot be repaired is the end result, so all this time it's the hard drive!

64GB worth of family photo's unaccesable, the imac is insured for repair but we need those files!

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Old 24th Mar 2011, 19:57   #21
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Honestly, I kinda had that thought in the back of my mind. OS X file system has only ever failed on me when the HD itself starts going **** up.

Get a replacement disk, put it in a freezer bag with some rice or something to absorb the moisture and leave it in the freezer for a while.

Get a USB enclosure and you may be in luck [try it in the USB enclosure first before the freezer], when my MBP HD 'died' it wouldn't boot but would allow access to my files once connected to something else.

Oh and BACKUP, why does it require this kind of thing to happen before people actually do anything about it?
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Old 24th Mar 2011, 21:35   #22
Neil79
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Originally Posted by Concorde Rules View Post
Oh and BACKUP, why does it require this kind of thing to happen before people actually do anything about it?
Because of the type of people that don't backup?

Mother, in her late 50's, facebook,email and internet... Not everyone is computer savy like we are. If it was my choice i'd burn every mac, horrible horrible things. Atleast with a windows system i'd be able to just bung on another sata cable and copy over just her pics!

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Old 24th Mar 2011, 23:19   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil79 View Post
Because of the type of people that don't backup?

Mother, in her late 50's, facebook,email and internet... Not everyone is computer savy like we are. If it was my choice i'd burn every mac, horrible horrible things. Atleast with a windows system i'd be able to just bung on another sata cable and copy over just her pics!
You do realise that you [Given you are computer saavy and are aware of occurrences like this] could have setup a backup with one click?

Time Machine asks you every time when connect a external disk if you want to use it as a backup drive.

You can't get any simpler than that. Now you know about TM you can set it up for her

Also doesn't make the rest of what I said irrelevant to the situation.

Also you can install OS X straight onto a USB drive with absolutely NO faffing about what so ever, A quick google suggests you need to faff command lining and what not to USB boot Windows 7.

So in two regards which are extremely relevant to your mum's computer, OS X wins completely on ease of use and simplicity.

So just to clarify:

Get a USB drive. Install OS X directly onto it. Boot OS X from this USB HDD by holding down the option (alt) key when you press the power button until a screen pops up with options to boot. If the internal HD mounts, copy files off. Replace internal drive. Carbon Copy Cloner the USB HD to the internal HD or reinstall from scratch. Setup USB as a TM disk, and suggest that your mum plugs it in once a week, or keeps it plugged in as long as the MBP is plugged in itself.
Last edited by FreeStream; 24th Mar 2011 at 23:51.
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Old 25th Mar 2011, 01:04   #24
Neil79
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It said the hard drive was fine, it said the memory was good.. I didn't get a chance to backup as i was today going to buy dvdrs!

Anyway i might be computer savy but not mac savy, i do not like the machine at all ... I don't have 70GB worth of USB drive lol because that's pretty much how many files over the years she has

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Last edited by Neil79; 25th Mar 2011 at 01:07.
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Old 25th Mar 2011, 01:33   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil79 View Post
It said the hard drive was fine, it said the memory was good.. I didn't get a chance to backup as i was today going to buy dvdrs!

Anyway i might be computer savy but not mac savy, i do not like the machine at all ... I don't have 70GB worth of USB drive lol because that's pretty much how many files over the years she has
If she can afford a mac she can afford the 40 or so to buy something like this:

http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...59&subcat=1237

How this situation would be different in a PC I have no idea.

Either way the internal drive needs replacing, two options:

1. Replace the internal drive, buy a caddy and bung the dying HD in that to attempt to recover the data.
2. Bung the new HD into the caddy, install OS X on that, copy files over, place HD into MB.

Depending on the generation of the MacBook how easy it is to replace the internal drive varies, however following a guide carefully will result in a successful replacement of the drive in any MacBook.
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Old 25th Mar 2011, 13:57   #26
Neil79
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Thanks CR!

Atleast the mac is on a monthly payment for guarantee, 10 a month or something. Might send it in for repair, atleast find out whats up with it. As it's shutting itself off now at grey screen.

The mac was purchased in 2007 so not new

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Old 25th Mar 2011, 17:32   #27
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Quote:
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Thanks CR!

Atleast the mac is on a monthly payment for guarantee, 10 a month or something. Might send it in for repair, atleast find out whats up with it. As it's shutting itself off now at grey screen.

The mac was purchased in 2007 so not new
MacBook or MacBook Pro?

If it's the MBP then it's the same as my old MBP, it's abit tricky to get to the HD but it's possible if whatever scheme your under doesn't cover failure anymore.

As for shutting off - no idea. Might be something more wrong with it than just the HD.
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Old 26th Mar 2011, 14:27   #28
Neil79
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UPDATE

The imac now has a new internal hard drive, all repaired cleaned up and installed myself!. Good fun, though i prefer a pc upgrade any day

Over the week i'll be looking into data recovery from the old drive

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Old 26th Mar 2011, 21:04   #29
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TimeMachine has got to be the easiest and most low maintenance system I've used. Make sure you sort her out with an external HD in the future.


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