Disk Utility Help

in Genius Bar edited January 2014
I've been experiencing problems with my powerbook. Safari don't seem to be working well for me when i'm using ftp://, and I can't seem to check on MSN email by clicking on the messanger icon (its not the program, i've tried reinstalling many times).

I ran a disk utility check and it couldn't even complete the 'verify' function; i've included a screen shot of the error. Can anyone please advise what I should do? I'm based in Singapore.


Many thanks in advance.


  • Reply 1 of 6
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,797member
    Hi Yuji,

    Reboot into "single user mode", by restarting your machine and holding down the "apple" and "s" keys simultaneously as soon as you hear the startup chime. Some white text on a black background should appear; when it does you can release the keys.

    After a few seconds, the screen should be about 3/4 full of text, and at the bottom it should say something like:


    If you wish to make modifacations to files:

    /sbin/fsck -fy

    /sbin/mount -uw /

    If you wish to boot the system, but stay in single user mode:

    sh /etc/rc

    localhost:/ root#

    type "/sbin/fsck -fy" or equivalent fsck command, if what it says on your screen is different without the quotes, and hit return. This will perform a check on your hard drive and fix any errors that it finds. Perform the task again if it fixed errors the first time.

    Oh yeah, and try using cyberduck for your ftp needs, it's a brilliant bit of "donation-ware" that should work a lot better than safari at ftp.

    Good luck.

  • Reply 2 of 6
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,797member
    I forgot to say: When you've finished in single-user mode, just type "reboot" whithout the quotes and hit return.
  • Reply 3 of 6
    yujiyuji Posts: 43member
    Thank you very much. I won't try them now because I can't afford for my powerbook to go 'wrong' because of exams. I shall give an update after the 18 June. Many thanks Mr H.
  • Reply 4 of 6
    curiousuburbcuriousuburb Posts: 3,325member
    You cannot Repair the active startup volume in some older versions of OS X.

    You need to repair it from single user mode (before it's active startup volume but after device load), or boot from another drive (such as a bootable CD or external disk) and run the repair from there.

    If you don't want to mess around typing commands in single user mode... (which you should run repeatedly until you get a "volume appears to be ok" response.)

    Boot from your OS X CD (you don't say if you're on Panther, or Jaguar, but whichever). Hold down the "C" key after the chime and it boots or you get the installer screen with lots of languages or until you can see the menu bar options.

    Choose English (or Chinese, or whatever) if you can't see anything in the menu bar yet, but DON'T START any INSTALL. Ignore the installation options on screen and head up to the menu bar.

    Go up into the Menu and you should have only a few options... Apple Menu... File --> Quit Installer... and Run Disk Utility.

    Run DU from the menu bar and do your normal repair operations. (IMO Verify is a bit of a waste of time, since you'll then want to run Repair anyway). When finished, quit DU, quit the installer program, and reboot.

    Hold down the mouse button or trackpad button on reboot chime to eject the CD.
  • Reply 5 of 6
    mr. hmr. h Posts: 4,797member

    Originally posted by Yuji

    Thank you very much. I won't try them now because I can't afford for my powerbook to go 'wrong' because of exams. I shall give an update after the 18 June. Many thanks Mr H.

    Hi Yuji,

    The thing is, something has already gone wrong and it could get worse if you don't repair the problem. Of course, something could go wrong during the repair process, but either way you are taking a risk.

    My advice is to back up any important files (such as write-ups, other self-created files that cannot be replaced) and repair the disk ASAP. Disk utility says that the error is minor, so there shouldn't be a problem fixing it.
  • Reply 6 of 6
    yujiyuji Posts: 43member
    Dear all,

    thanks so much for the kind advice. It worked perfectly well and my HD has been repaired.

    Once again, thanks so much for all those kind advice. Really helped to solve my woes.

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