Saturday, September 02, 2006

Restore broken on Intel Mac OS X 10.4.7


This is amazing news - you can't restore from the OS X boot disk if you own an Intel Mac.

Not because the feature isn't there, but because there's a bug. A bug! If there's any place you don't want bugs it's in the system restore.

Disk Utility should let you drag your destination device to the destination field but a screw-up in the mode of the list of devices renders them as a text list complete with copy/paste menus. So you can't drag and drop - it just does a multi-selection! (see image)

I thought I was going mad until the truth dawned on me - it's broken.

The work-arounds in the article are completely unsatisfactory. Apple should offer a replacement bootdisk for download that just contains Disk Utility at the very least.

I'm glad time machine has been created - that might make up for a stuff-up of this magnitude. I had to mount the disk and restore the Users and Applications manually under a different user to get around this (it was necessary after getting a replacement Mac when battery problems made it DOA).

[Note: You might be able to create your own boot disk and fix the Disk Utility app problem by visiting and reading this post].

[Update 2: You can create an OS X install disk by creating a DMG from the OS X install disk using Disk Utility, remove unnecessary files from the install disk image, then use Disk Utility to restore the smaller OS X Image to a DVD-sized blank sparseimage (just ignore the error 22 at the end). I updated the Disk Utility as part of the process and before booting on the new boot disk - it still failed as above. So this process isn't worth doing and there isn't a way to do a restore. Over to you Apple...]


Anonymous said...

Yes, drag and drop doesn't work in Disk Utility when booting from the startup disk.

However, you can simply press "control" while clicking on one of the disks on the left to display the context menu (and then pick "Set source" or "Set destination".

Narbs said...

I tried this but couldn't work out a way to actually restore using this interface - the control-key menu works but I couldn't set source and destination at the same time. The browse didn't let me choose a sparseimage as a source image but it did validate the image using the Tools menu so it should have been okay. I'm completely at a loss to how anyone uses this interface.

Unknown said...

You can solve this problem by dragging the mounted destination from the window to the left of the source. Dragging from the desktop or any other place won't work. I found this out in my fight to burn leopard on a Single Layer DVD.

Anonymous said...


The solution?
(my system is Tiger 10.4.11)

copy the updated Disk to an external (FireWire for me) storage from a native, updated, working etc. system. Boot from the boot DVD with the attached external storage, run Terminal.
# cd /Volumes/[external storage]/[directory holding DU]/Disk\
# ./Disk\ Utility

In this version of DU drag and drop works for me. I haven't tried Restore yet, but I hope it will work...


Narbs said...

Thanks KrisZ - it's good to know the Tiger version works. I'm backing up my system with Time Machine but haven't looked into restoring yet.

Unfortunately, I'm using a USB hard drive rather than firewire so I can't test the below approach.

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