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Disk Error: Best Solution?


I am new to this forum, but I have searched all the posts to find something like my problem. I am also a grad student in my last year, living on student loans . . . Happy

I have a graphite SE iBook, running Jaguar 10.3 and OS 9.2.

So, here is my problem:
1. I had downloaded an OS X update;
2. When I returned to the machine, there was a message that I was running out of disk space, but the machine was unresponsive.
3. I powered down and rebooted. Nothing.
4. Powered down and rebooted again. Nothing.
5. I rebooted using O-F; it came up, but I wasn't sure what to do while there.
6. I rebooted into single user mode and the machine when into kernel panic.
7. I tried to boot from my Jaguar disks; nothing.
8. I rebooted from my OS 9.2 disks. The machine came up.
9. I tried to delete the files in my Trash can, which consisted of 3 files: Rescued from Macintosh; Rescued from Macintosh 1; Rescued from Macintosh 2. Something spent a lot of time "preparing to delete", but returned with an Unable to delete: Disk Error message.
10. I checked this a couple of times; it was always the same.
11. I moved the files out of the trash can to my desktop, hoping to delete them directly without all the "preparing. . .", but it simply moved them back to trash can.
12. I have checked out Disk Warrior, which seems like the better option, and TechTool Pro. I would have to order both from the web, because here in southern New Mexico, we just don't have this stuff on the shelf Happy

So here is my question:
Is this behavior typical of a problem that could be solved with Disk Warrior, and prevented in this future? (The software sounds pretty good).

I am not much of a Mac person, although I have learned a lot in the past few days. I have lots of background in PC and mainframe and minicomputers (dating myself, enit!).

But I am concerned that when it says Disk Error, I have really crashed the hard drive. I don't have enough experience with Mac to know if this is a real possibility . . . or, if someone just overwrote a buffer and trashed some addresses, and Disk Warrior would be able to fix it right up.

Also, I have a 5.6 Gb drive, but it is saying that I only have 127 Mb available. I don't have that many of my own files, because this has become a machine I use to test software and in special cases. So where is the rest of ths space? Is it in those rescue files?

Thanks Happy
I will be very appreciative for what help you can give me.


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Not good but probably recoverable

In reply to: Disk Error: Best Solution?

Simply put, you do not have anywhere near the HD space required to run OS X and OS 9 on that size HD.
You appear to have filled up every available bit of space on that drive. A full blown version of OS X will run around 3Gb, if not more, OS 9 has probably a Gb, all the other software that comes with the install and, remember this, you were trying to install an update which will take at least double the amount of space that it eventually occupy. Throw in Memory Paging and you have just about broke it.

Although 10.3.9 will run comfortable on it, OS 9 needs to go.

Disk Warrior "may" get you into a position where you can boot back into OS X, it is definately worth a try. If this iBook has Firewire AND you have a second Mac (or access to one) you can boot the iBook into Target mode and access the drive from another machine. Hopefully it will boot to Target mode for you. Startup holding down the "T" key. The firewire icon moves around the screen when ready. The drive then appears on the desktop of the other Mac and you can delete, or recover, files from there.


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No disk at all now. . .

In reply to: Not good but probably recoverable

Thanks for the clear view Happy

I found the Flash modules I was concerned about, and so there was really nothing on the drive that I need.

I erased it in 9.2. The process came back and said that the erase was unsuccessful. However, all the files seem to be gone. So is the hard drive.

I tried booting into the OS X 10.1 install, to see if it would install. It isn't finding the hard drive. Guess this is REally BAd.

I tried to run Disk Utility, but it is "looking for disk drives" forever.

It sees the hardware (5.59 Gb Toshiba) but doesn't find "Macintosh HD". I can't get to any of the utility functions, like First Aid, or Erase, because it is looking and looking . . .

What do you think now?


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Now is the time for Disk Warrior

In reply to: No disk at all now. . .

It should find the drive, rebuild the directory and allow you to get on with things


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In reply to: Now is the time for Disk Warrior

Thanks so much for your help. I really appreciate it Happy


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Reformat the drive

In reply to: No disk at all now. . .

Hi Mia,

I'm not sure what you mean by ''Flash modules'' and what you did to erase the drive. From what you're saying, it seems that the hard drive needs to be reformatted.

Boot from the OS 9 CD and use Drive Setup to format the drive; select HFS+ (Mac OS Extended) format. After that you'll have to install 9 and/or Jaguar. If you can't format it, then the drive is bad.

Your original problem probably stems from the fact that you filled up the hard drive during the OS X update. OS X needs swap space (virtual memory) to run and when there wasn't enough it put up the Disk Error message. Either that or the drive coincidentally started going bad.

Best wishes,
* apta

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(no disk in drive) on 2nd boot

In reply to: Reformat the drive

Hi, Apta,

The Flash modules were software that I had developed to support my Master's thesis research, and was pretty important.

I booted into 9 and went to Drive Set-up. When the function first started, it said my drive was not initialized. I sent it off to initialize, and it hung somewhere. So I powered down, and when I restarted, the first page that had identified the disk as "Not initialized" was now saying No Disk in Drive.

I am now off looking for someone to put in a new drive. I looked at the back cover, and those little nuts are perplexing. How long does it take to put a new drive in an iBook? The people here in town (we only have 1 choice) said An hour or two (at $60 an hour).


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Before you go down that road

In reply to: (no disk in drive) on 2nd boot

Try Disk Warrior.

Disk Utility is not the best thing in the world and even though the Disk Utility cannot see the drive, does not mean that something else can't. I have seen DW recover a drive, completely, even though Disk Utility could not see it.

How long does it take to change a HD in an iBook. UNDER an hour!

If this is NOT an Apple Authorised Service Provider then be Very, Very afraid.

If you decide to replace the drive anyway, email me at my profile first.


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Disk Warrior on the way

In reply to: Before you go down that road

I ordered Disk Warrior a couple of nights ago, so it should be here in a week or so.

I guess the best thing to do is wait till it comes in, run it, and see what happens, post again with the results.

I called a 2nd person; I don't know if he is Apple-certified or not. He told me these iBooks are ugly to get back together, and that it takes 2 hours to replace a disk. He wants $55 an hour, although he said he would do the diagnostic for $35. . . since that takes about 10 minutes, that's . . . let's see . . . 6 * 35 = $200 an hour.

He seemed nice enough. Maybe he was just disarming. Of course, it is 88 miles round trip to his place and back . . .

So I'll wait for DW, and take the next steps then.

Thanks, everyone, for your help. And I used to think my Mac was just a fluffy, little Girl-Toy! NOT.


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Unable to read/unable to mount

In reply to: Not good but probably recoverable

I booted up using the 9.2 CD, which gave me access to Disk Utility. It found teh disk, calling it "unknown". I clicked Repair. It reported that it was unable to read from the disk, and then that it was unable to mount it.

Do you think Disk Warrior might be able to fix this? I've heard it can fix "dead" disks, and mine is certainly seeming to qualify. . . or do you think maybe its crashed?


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DiskWarrior=must have for Mac.

In reply to: Unable to read/unable to mount

DiskWarrior has found and fixed lost disks for me countless times. Recently it found a disk that would not mount,but could not fix it. It still saved my data because it enabled me to copy everything to another disk. I wouldn't be without it. It is worth every penny. Try it.

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The disk is dead. Long live the Disk.

In reply to: Unable to read/unable to mount

Disk Warrior arrived.

I booted up.

I didn't find the hard drive.


But I would like to thank everyone for all your wonderful help.


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Email to follow

In reply to: The disk is dead. Long live the Disk.

We should consider this thread finished and closed


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