More Leopard woes

Filed under: Geekiness — iain @ 23:23:21

The lustre is starting to wear off Apple for me.

In the past I used to absolutely despise Macs. This was in the pre-OS X days. I despised them for one simple reason. They were rubbish. Then with OS X they were suddenly pretty good. They look pretty, they’re stable and they’re easy to use. Hurrah for Macs.

Until they go wrong and you get stuck. Or until an OS upgrade breaks things in fundamental ways.

Mark arrived back from the US with the Mac Mini I’d asked him to bring me back. I wanted it for two reasons. One: to replace my Linux workstation which is a Pentium 4 with RAMBUS (cost price, adjusted for inflation, about £6.02×1023 in today’s money) and is way too hot and noisy for my front room. Two: to get the Leopard workstation CD as I only have the server install.

Installing Linux on the new Mini could wait. My first goal was to upgrade my MacBook Pro and Rebecca’s Mini to Leopard. The laptop was first.

I popped the Leopard upgrade DVD into the drive and booted the machine. Yes I want to do an upgrade install. Off we go.

"The install failed."

That’s what it said. Nothing at all in any way helpful about why the install failed or what could be done. It failed. That’s that. Have a nice day.

So I rebooted to try again. Then the installer said it couldn’t find OS X 10.4 and hence couldn’t start the upgrade.

Say what? It was there ten minutes ago. What did you do?

I rebooted again with the 10.4 installer.

"The software cannot be installed on this computer."


I erased the OS X partition. I know for a fact that there are files on that that don’t exist on the network because of the way profile syncing works. They’re gone now. And still the thing "cannot be installed" for no reason it would care to divulge.

I haven’t had this much fun installing an OS since NetBSD trashed my partition table and I spent an hour or two with a shell script for-loop guessing at fdisk commands to restore it.

At least I can still boot into Windows. Leopard is currently installing – quite happily – on Rebecca’s Mini. I’ll decide what to do with the MacBook Pro later.

All this comes after my iMac locked up … again … for no reason … again and, after rebooting, decided that it would ignore my LDAP bindings … again. It also wouldn’t mount my home directory but that turned out to be the NFS server’s fault, and then wiped out my Terminal preferences proplist, which didn’t.


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