Bootcamp killed my mac! please help!

Posted:
in Genius Bar edited January 2014
Hi everyone,



this is my first post here - I wanted to partition my hard disk to install xp (as I require some programs I still have on windows).



During the windows installation, something went wrong and now my mac mini wont boot at all. My mac will also not respond to any keyboard combos (cmd, opt, cmd+opt+o+f, c, x) etc. so it will not boot from a cd/dvd or start in open firmware mode.



I think the partition totally messed up and somehow, it can't see the mac partition.



Here is my question: If I manage to format the hard disk as HFS+, will I be able to just insert the OSX installation disk and reinstall everything?



Also, how could I go about formatting the disk as HFS+ from a windows based laptop? Connect the hard drive somehow and then use transmac? http://www.acutesystems.com/scrtm.htm



I'd really appreciate any help resurrecting my dead mac!



Cheers!

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,698member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheSamuraiElephant View Post


    Hi everyone,



    this is my first post here - I wanted to partition my hard disk to install xp (as I require some programs I still have on windows).



    During the windows installation, something went wrong and now my mac mini wont boot at all. My mac will also not respond to any keyboard combos (cmd, opt, cmd+opt+o+f, c, x) etc. so it will not boot from a cd/dvd or start in open firmware mode.



    I think the partition totally messed up and somehow, it can't see the mac partition.



    Here is my question: If I manage to format the hard disk as HFS+, will I be able to just insert the OSX installation disk and reinstall everything?



    Also, how could I go about formatting the disk as HFS+ from a windows based laptop? Connect the hard drive somehow and then use transmac? http://www.acutesystems.com/scrtm.htm



    I'd really appreciate any help resurrecting my dead mac!



    Cheers!



    Where do you live? A trip to a Genius Bar would be your best bet.



    To access the HDD from another computer, you have to turn the machine on and immediately hold down the "T" key, to boot to "Target Disk Mode". However, given that you can't boot from CD or to open firmware, things sound very messed up I'm afraid
  • Reply 2 of 13
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post


    Where do you live? A trip to a Genius Bar would be your best bet.



    To access the HDD from another computer, you have to turn the machine on and immediately hold down the "T" key, to boot to "Target Disk Mode". However, given that you can't boot from CD or to open firmware, things sound very messed up I'm afraid



    I'm from UK originally, but living in Poland now....Unfortunately there are no genius bars here, only authorised apple service shops...I'm trying to avoid that option, as I don't want to get the wallet out!



    So, in order to access the HDD from another computer, I connect it (via USB? I only have a windows machine apart from my mac) and then hold down T on the keyboard of the broken mac while it's booting?



    If I got it to that stage and was able to see the HDD on my windows machine, what would be the next step?
  • Reply 3 of 13
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,698member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheSamuraiElephant View Post


    So, in order to access the HDD from another computer, I connect it (via USB? I only have a windows machine apart from my mac) and then hold down T on the keyboard of the broken mac while it's booting?



    If I got it to that stage and was able to see the HDD on my windows machine, what would be the next step?



    You can't do it with a Windows PC, you need a Mac and a firewire cable. (You could connect the Mac to a PC with Firewire, but the PC wouldn't be able to run the OS X installer disk).



    However, it sounds like your firmware is hosed. Those key combinations to boot from CD or to open-firmware have nothing to do with the HDD.
  • Reply 4 of 13
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post


    You can't do it with a Windows PC, you need a Mac and a firewire cable. (You could connect the Mac to a PC with Firewire, but the PC wouldn't be able to run the OS X installer disk).



    However, it sounds like your firmware is hosed. Those key combinations to boot from CD or to open-firmware have nothing to do with the HDD.



    You do sound right. I also suspect the firmware is hosed, given that my mac no longer responds to the key-combos. I'm guessing that somehow during the rebooting while installing windows, it somehow fried the rom which the firmware reads from.



    I originally wanted to just take the HDD out, put it in a USB enclosure, and format it to a blank HFS+ disk using transmac on windows. But, that won't help if the firmware doesn't tell it to start installing from the OSX disk.



    What I get when I power on now is a white screen, followed by a (very DOS looking) black screen with the text: "Disk error. Press any key to restart". Unfortunately, nothing works...



    I've only had this mac 3 months, (although second hand, so no warranty). Wahhhh I think I'm going to have to pay a lot if the firmware is toast.
  • Reply 5 of 13
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,698member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheSamuraiElephant View Post


    You do sound right. I also suspect the firmware is hosed, given that my mac no longer responds to the key-combos. I'm guessing that somehow during the rebooting while installing windows, it somehow fried the rom which the firmware reads from.



    I originally wanted to just take the HDD out, put it in a USB enclosure, and format it to a blank HFS+ disk using transmac on windows. But, that won't help if the firmware doesn't tell it to start installing from the OSX disk.



    What I get when I power on now is a white screen, followed by a (very DOS looking) black screen with the text: "Disk error. Press any key to restart". Unfortunately, nothing works...



    I've only had this mac 3 months, (although second hand, so no warranty). Wahhhh I think I'm going to have to pay a lot if the firmware is toast.



    Can you get the OS X DVD into the DVD drive? Perhaps you're just not pressing the key combinations soon enough after turning on the machine. If the firmware were hosed I wouldn't have thought it would be able to show that message on the screen.



    Here's what I'd try: Turn on the machine, and insert the OS X DVD. Once the DVD is in, wait for the screen to show "Disk error. [etc]", then force the machine off. Then, turn back on and immediately press the "d" key (in fact, you can probably start to hold down the key before pressing the power button). Keep the "d" key down until the machine boots from the DVD.



    Good luck!
  • Reply 6 of 13
    Yeah - I can get the osx disk in and out of the drive (it only responds to left-mouse clicks to eject disks - the eject function key, or cmd+e do not work).



    I followed your instructions and tried holding down 'd' with the osx cd in while booting - but nothing. I got the same "Disk error" message (which I get with or without a disk in the drive).



    I've also tried these combinations:

    cmd+opt+p+r

    cmd+opt+o+f

    cmd

    opt

    x

    d

    c

    shift



    none of these have any results - with or without disk in drive.



    Perhaps if it is not the firmware causing problems, then it is my keyboard. But that would be very odd as it's a normal aluminium official apple keyboard, fairly new too. It was working while i was trying to install windows xp just a moment before everything went to pieces.



    I'll try and borrow a usb keyboard from someone to test and post back once I've seen what happens.



    Cheers for the advice so far. At least it's narrowing down possibilities.
  • Reply 7 of 13
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,195moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheSamuraiElephant View Post


    Perhaps if it is not the firmware causing problems, then it is my keyboard. But that would be very odd as it's a normal aluminium official apple keyboard, fairly new too. It was working while i was trying to install windows xp just a moment before everything went to pieces.



    The aluminium keyboards don't work on older Macs for booting such as any Mini pre-2009 and I think iMacs before the aluminum ones.



    You can use your Apple remote if you have it though. You can hold the menu button to get to to a boot selector. For other startup options, you have to use a 3rd party keyboard.



    I was surprised at Apple's decision to do that as it's such an important part of recovering from an error.
  • Reply 8 of 13
    I'm having the same problem with Bootcamp.



    I have a 2.2 GHz MBP 3,1 with 4 GB ram. I have a 200 GB HD with a 32 GB windoze partition on which I ran XP Pro so I can run SolidWorks for work. I also run Parallels 4.0 but large files run a little slow in SolidWorks under Parallels.



    After installing SL using the upgrade path rather than a clean install, I wanted to do a clean install of windows. So I used BC to remove my windows partition. I then used Disk Utility to repair permissions and did a restart.



    Next I used BC to again create a 32 GB partition and tried to install XP. The install seemed to be going ok until it tried to start windows during the install. When it reached the part where the computer needs to restart, it gets stuck with a black screen saying "disc error, press any key to restart". But it won't recognize a key press.



    The only way I've found to unfreeze the computer at that point is to hold down the power button, forcing it to shut down.



    When I restart it defaults back to the same "disc error" screen.



    However, if I force a shut down again, and restart while holding down the alt key, I get the usual Mac screen that gives me the option to boot into MacOS or Windows, and if the Windows DVD is in the drive, I also have the option to boot using that disc.



    If I choose the MacOS, it boots normally into SL. If I choose Windows, it boots back to the "disc error" screen and is frozen again. If I choose to boot to the XP install disc, it starts installing Windows again and then freezes again at the same point.



    So for now, I've just removed the partition again and will run Parallels.



    Anyone have any ideas about this problem? Is it a Bootcamp issue with SL?



    Thanks,
  • Reply 9 of 13
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,195moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jfog View Post


    it gets stuck with a black screen saying "disc error, press any key to restart". But it won't recognize a key press.



    I got that problem, it was due to the Windows disc I had. I had installed it before but for some reason it didn't work on my new machine - it went so far and then gave me that error. I got another SP2 disc and this one had a formatting step on it when you boot from it asking you to format the partition as FAT or NTFS. After formatting, the installer went through just fine.



    I've no idea how you check which is which as both were XP Pro SP2 discs, one had the formatting step on it and the other didn't. If you had another machine with XP installed, you could image it from there using WinClone.
  • Reply 10 of 13
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    I got another SP2 disc and this one had a formatting step on it when you boot from it asking you to format the partition as FAT or NTFS. After formatting, the installer went through just fine.



    I've no idea how you check which is which as both were XP Pro SP2 discs, one had the formatting step on it and the other didn't. If you had another machine with XP installed, you could image it from there using WinClone.



    That does seem to be my problem, too. When I get to the point where Windows is going to format the partition, I don't get an option to format as FAT, even though my bootcamp partition is FAT. I had been trying to use the option to "leave original file system in place", or words to that effect, thinking it would format as FAT. However, that always led to the "disc error" freeze.



    After re-reading the bootcamp install instructions, I noticed it said to choose any option but the "leave in place" option. So I did that and it formatted the partition as NTFS. But then everything installed correctly. So I am back in business, although now I can't share files with the Mac side.



    I don't have access to another XP install disc so I guess I have to live with this.



    Oh well...
  • Reply 11 of 13
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,195moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jfog View Post


    After re-reading the bootcamp install instructions, I noticed it said to choose any option but the "leave in place" option. So I did that and it formatted the partition as NTFS. But then everything installed correctly. So I am back in business, although now I can't share files with the Mac side.



    I don't have access to another XP install disc so I guess I have to live with this.



    Oh well...



    The Mac NTFS driver should do the trick:



    http://macntfs-3g.blogspot.com/



    It doesn't work in 64-bit kernel mode apparently but I think SL boots a 32-bit kernel by default.
  • Reply 12 of 13
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    The Mac NTFS driver should do the trick:



    http://macntfs-3g.blogspot.com/



    It doesn't work in 64-bit kernel mode apparently but I think SL boots a 32-bit kernel by default.



    Thanks for the link. That does work!
  • Reply 13 of 13
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    The aluminium keyboards don't work on older Macs for booting such as any Mini pre-2009 and I think iMacs before the aluminum ones.



    You can use your Apple remote if you have it though. You can hold the menu button to get to to a boot selector. For other startup options, you have to use a 3rd party keyboard.



    I was surprised at Apple's decision to do that as it's such an important part of recovering from an error.



    I wish I had read this post before going to the apple authorised service place today.

    I had tried all the possible key combos (as mentioned) and nothing worked. However, after reading your post, I can confirm that my mac-mini is from 2006, but my keyboard is the apple aluminium one which apparently doesn't work for booting.



    That is CRAZY. I had the mac remote sitting here, and didn't even consider trying it.

    I phoned the apple helpline and they didn't even mention the remote.



    I think Apple should make it a bit clearer to customers of older mac products that the official keyboard might not work for booting. The information about using the mac remote should be easy to find. Maybe a post regarding it should be made a sticky?



    The apple authorised service where I am have a standard charge of $50 (around £30) for any problem. That's great if it's something serious I guess - but if I could have fixed it myself with the remote....well....my mac mini is there now, in a queue of others, 80km away.



    If only I read this post first. Doh! >_<
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