1. Re-install OS X and replace the Home folder from your backup
2. Run the Migration Assistant and restore everything from your Time Machine backup
3. Unless you remove and replace that hard drive, your chances of recovering anything meaningful from it are slim.
Put it inside an external drive enclosure and attempt to recover data from it to the new internal.
One should never, unless it is totally unavoidable, attempt to recover data back to the drive you are recovering from.
By removing it and NOT writing to it, you increase your chances
So, here is what happened. I am really stupid. Like, really really stupid.
So I have an SSD in my hard drive bay and an HDD in my optical bay with a bracket. System/Apps on the SSD, everything else - HDD.
Last night I tried dual booting linux and deleted everything on both drives by accident. Yeah. I had the SSD backed up so I can boot to OSX but since my entire home folder is now missing, I can only log onto the Guest account.
Am I going to have to reinstall Mountain Lion from the recovery partition or is there a way to restore everything from the hard drive I erased? It is around 170gb.
Pleaaaase advise. If I have to start over, it's not the end of the world - my music and movies are backed up so thats whatever its mostly just various documents I've accumulated but I would very much like to get them back, if I can.