Apple Software Update (from hell) Part II

Let’s pick up where we left off. The HD swap was successfully completed.

MacBook was powered on to show screen displaying folder with a question mark in the center. Slightly alarming but perfectly normal, it does not recognize the new hardware installed. At this point, you can boot from operating disk by selecting option after the startup chime and selecting disk as startup method.

Part II, Section I: Partitioning your new drive

Once you arrive at the installation screen you can select utility from the top menu and click on disk utility. Format can be MAC OS Extended (Journaled) and you may name it what you like.

Here is the part where things got tricky for me. Next step was to install the operating system on the partitioned drive. I went through the installation process at which one point I was asked how I wanted to transfer my data. Instead of kindly replying “no thanks” I chose from another drive (my external drive which had my data that was transferred via firewire cable, see software update from hell part I).

At this point my computer had installed the original software (snow leopard 10.6.3) so once I had transferred all my data, many of my applications were unsupported by this ancient OS. On the dock, it was showing up as boxes with question marks or empty boxes. Since the app store icon did not exist in 10.6.3, I went to safari to search for mountain lion (10.8) [pun definitely intended]. I soon discovered that I could not make the drastic jump from 10.6.3 to 10.8 and that I had to have at least 10.6.6 in order to get to 10.8. Ok, baby steps, for the love of Buddha let’s just get to 10.6.6.

Mind you, I had already spent a few hours transferring data and installing all the mumbo jumbo that went with having a shiny new drive.

Remember what happened last time I did a software update?

Ahhh, the circle of life, the irony.

My computer went to restart after the update. I did get past the gray screen with the spinning colorless unforgiving wheel, whoop whoop. I also got the login screen, which asked for my UID and password. Great.

I enter it in; it acknowledges that it is the correct information and goes to start up. Only it doesn’t. It goes back to asking me my UID and password. And it infinitely does this. Around and around and around we go.

So what happened? Somewhere along the way, after I transferred my data from the external drive, permissions must have gotten altered. Who knows, it could be something else.


I went back to my crutch, single user mode (or verbose mode, however you prefer) in an attempt to change my password this way. I began with the following prompt at root command:

Launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/ DirectoryServices.plist

I got the following messages back after numerous attempts with various root commands to change password:

-Dyld: shared cache file was build against a different libSystem.dylib, ignoring cache

-Launch msg(): Socket is not connected

-Sudo: can’t open /etc/sudoers: Resource Temporarily Unavailable

I ran numerous prompts to try and get around this including:

Sudo update_dyld_shared_cache –force        

& -verify

All was to no avail.

I launched back in via operating disk. I repaired and verified, repaired and verified.

There was nothing left to do, except wipe the drive and start all over. And that my friend, is what I did.  Unwillingly. The funny part is, I kept thinking during all this, what if the world ends next week and I’ve spent my final days verifying, repairing, installing and booting.

After wiping the drive, I did things differently (thank goodness for the capacity to learn). After installing the OS, I did not transfer any data from the external drive when it prompted me to do so. I upgraded to 10.6.6 then mountain lion and it was all like clockwork although it took hours.

When all was said and done, it felt good, really good. The kind of good you get from quenching your thirst after being dangerously thirsty after a blistering hot day.

After I was running mountain lion, I manually transferred what I needed from my external drive (this had the added benefit of uncluttering). At this point I could have used migration assistant but I read somewhere that it doesn’t let you pick and choose what to transfer, it simply dumps everything.

Side Note: When you jump from 10.6.6 to 10.8.3 iPhoto is not bundled; it has to be installed separately. There are a few other minor things that are not included.   Transferring the iPhoto library from a TimeMachine backup on an external drive gets complicated, I have yet to take the time to sit down and learn how to do it. My first few attempts were unsuccessful. Apart from transferring the iPhoto library, I am pretty much up to speed and running better than before. The only thing left to do is make another partition on my external drive so I can begin backup of the new drive.

Now I can kick back and drink my thirst quenching water; my love for apple reaffirmed, my faith fully restored.


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