Disk needs repair and no alternative disk to start up

in Genius Bar edited June 2014
I am a neophyte. Actually a gerontophyte as I am an old fart, though I have used Macs for years, though always with as little understanding of the internal workings as possible. My MacBook has been glitching a lot so I went into Disk Utilities and did the Repair Disk thing, but halfway, or a thirdway through it stopped and popped up, well, I guess a popup that said something like "Disk needs to be repaired - start computer with another disk (Mac OS X installer, e.g.) and then use disk utility to repair this disk." Oh, cool... I live in a remote part of Papua New Guinea - yes, we have broadband because we installed satellite. But I am pretty sure I do not have my original Mac OS X installation disk - so am I totally screwed or what? Do I have to find an installation disk somewhere? My main problem is that I keep getting the damn Spinning Color Rainbow Eternal Wheel of Excruciating Death (S.C.R.E.W.E.D.). It is not only interfering with my work (Force Quit is becoming a mantra I am afraid may apply to me more than to my computer), but I am dreaming of SCREWEDs......

Any ideas people??


  • Reply 1 of 8
    You will need either your install DVDs or another Mac and a Firewire cable. Sorry, but I don't know of any other way to run Disk Utility in your situation. Either way, you're going to want to backup that drive ASAP. It could be unrepairable.
  • Reply 2 of 8
    banchobancho Posts: 1,517member
    This might be an option if you can download it and burn it to a disc:


    It's free and seems to be exactly what you need to solve your problem.

    Good luck.
  • Reply 3 of 8
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    Startup in single user mode to do the repair.

    You reboot holding command-s and you reach a console.

    When the text stops loading in, type:

    fsck -fy

    then hit return and it will repair your disc. It will then verify it again. When it's done, type reboot and hit return.
  • Reply 4 of 8
    dr millmossdr millmoss Posts: 5,403member
    Doh. I've done that a hundred times. Embarrassed to have forgotten.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    Hey, Howdy!! Marvin you good! Even a gerontophyte in the Back of Beyond could follow your instrux. Did what you suggested, then rebooted and just for the sake of corroboration went into Disk Utilities and did a Verify Disk and it checked everything and this lovely little phrase popped up in blue "The Volume MacIntosh HD appears to be o.k." - and deed it does.

    Thanks to Dr. Millmoss, Bancho and especially Marvin for the time and attention. It is much appreciated. And I have not seen the Spinning Color Rainbow Eternal Wheel of Excruciating Death all day long, which is a first for months....


  • Reply 6 of 8

    Jesus I cant believe I happened upon this thing. Amazing and I had the same results. thanks thanks thanks. 

  • Reply 7 of 8

    I just ran into this problem on my machine...with no install disc and was quietly (or not so quietly) freaking out until I googled and luckily landed here on this old solution. Perfect fix!! Thanks!

  • Reply 8 of 8

    Made an account just to express how thankful and helpful this thread is. I was making a 100GB partition for BootCamp then the laptop got stucked at partitioning so I had to restart it. The moment it start up I found out that Mac HD's space was 100Gb less. I couldn't see the partition I made for bootcamp. I searched different kinds of solution only to stumble upon this simple solution! (I lost my install disc so I was freaking out) Thank you so much! 

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