Monday, November 09, 2009

Lost yet another HD on my MacBook 2.1

This is so very strange that I still cannot believe the HD failed.
What happened was that I was attempting to install FreeBSD 8.0 from an install CD. I didn't intend to install the FreeBSD bootloader as I wanted to boot it from Grub as I had done a long time ago on my Dell Desktop.
However, even though I had created the slice on which I was going to install FreeBSD (/dev/ad5c1b), when I got around to doing the installing, it errored out with this message:

Unable to find device mode for /dev/ad5c1b in /dev!
The creation of filesystems will be aborted.

So, then I rebooted to go back to Ubuntu -- but it wouldn't boot. Now I started hoping that it wasn't my had-disk again (I'd already lost three) so I inserted the Parted Magic CD in the drive and rebooted.
It booted to this CD and I was able to see that all the partitions with their proper sizes and labels were evident. However, all partitions showed the yellow "warning" triangle.
Next, everything froze and I couldn't do anything within Parted Magic.
So another reboot. This time all I saw was a flashing folder with a question mark which, from google, means that no bootable drive has been detected.
More googling told me that what I need to do is to boot to the OS X DVD and use disk utility to do a disk repair on the drives that don't boot (although this would probably only work for OS X).
However, I couldn't eject the Parted magic CD -- not with the eject button, holding down the touchpad mouse key during boot, trying command-options-O-F during boot. Nothing worked. I also held down the "C" key during boot to see if I could get the Parted magic CD to boot but nothing doing.
So nothing for it but to bring it back to the shop (I have the Apple extended warranty which cost me €310 about 15 months ago). They concluded that the HD had, once again failed.
I was flabbergasted. And I honestly have to say that this is quite unbelievable.
The shop guy told me to call Apple because I've had an amazing amount of grief with this computer. So I did, they agreed and I'm going to get a new MacBook (250 GB HD, 2GB RAM, 2.26GHz C2D processor all of which are an upgrade on what I have). So, looks like this story might just have a happy ending but I never like to count my chickens before they're hatched.
One conclusion though is that all of the Apple people with whom I dealt have been extremely professional and helpful. No complaints at all.

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