My beloved laptop is making another trip to Apple for repair.
When it came back from Apple last time, it had such an old OS installed that Time Capsule was not available, which meant no internet, no backup... The Des Moines Apple store tried its best, keeping it over night to install the data from my Time Capsule onto the machine. What I did not know was that the device got wiped in the process, (which I'd been told was a possibility).
I bought a 16 GB thumb drive and moved my more important files onto it, and from there to the 2002 G4 tower, which still works, testing each thing moved.
The next trip. I backed up my huge iTunes music folder to a 500 GB LeCie auxillary drive, and thought I had the problem solved...
Then I got a new system master, for OS 10.6.3, and upgraded on line to 10.6.6, snow Leopard... Very crashy, but sort of ran, for a bit. The new Time Capsule still would not back up the laptop. Say what?
I dug out the old one and tried to transfer from it, not aware that it really was wiped.
The only thing left to try was a clean install. Backing everything possible to LaCie, I bit the bullet and wiped it all. It seemed at first (as usual) that it was okay, but when I started upgrading to 10.6.6, beginning with the OS, the laptop showed its true colors. I had to download the OS twice, but thought I'd messed things up the first time.
Once I got it up and began doing the other upgrades one at a time, it crashed again. I actually did one more of the six, a security update, I think, then began on Safari. Kernal Panic! I got the gray screen descending, the window turning dark, and a black box appearing that instructs to restart the computer. To shut down in that state, you have to hold the power button down until it quits...
Resetting the p ram did not solve it this time.
So, the supervisor who's been working with me trying to save the stuff on the computer by stashing it on the LaCie, preparatory to trying a clean install, is now sending a box via UPS with all the stickers to pack it away to send to Apple.
Pray if that is in your repetoiry.. I really can't afford a new laptop.