Since you must save the data why not replace the HDD (a 500GB here was under 50) restore the apple with the supplied DVDs (the white model came with them) then put the old HDD into some USB case (mine cost 30 bucks last time.)
That's under 99 bucks and far cheaper than a service counter or data recovery centers.
My white MacBook has crashed. I believe I bought it in 2008. I've posted on the Apple Forums, but no luck with the solutions.
I've tried pretty much everything you're supposed to try: booted in safe mode, booted in recovery mode (I'm running Lion), reset the pram...everything I could try based on recommendations here. No luck.
I don't have a good backup. The one I have says "in progress". It looks like it stopped before completing the backup.
I'm considering buying a new external drive and trying to copy a disk image to it. Or, trying to install a bootable disk with lion and booting from there and then trying to retrieve my pictures and docs that way. Oh, no I can't boot normally, only in recovery.
When I try to repair the disk and permissions it says disk full can't be repaired backup files and reformat drive.
Help! I don't want to spend much money on this. I need to put it towards a new computer. Any ideas?