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Saturday, August 08, 2009

It's funny how one program's screw up can have unintended consequences, leading to a chain of frustrating events. That happened to me recently as I encountered an issue with Firefox 3.0.10 on my Hackint0sh netbook.

It appears that Firefox 3.0.10 has something of a Flash stability issue. The only way I was able to fix it was to disable Flash. which didn't work when I actually wanted to view Flash content. So, I resolved to try something I had not done before - restore from Time Machine, Apple's robust built-in backup solution.

My first attempt was to simply call up Time Machine, find the last backup before the Firefox issue, and roll back to that point. Sounds easy, right? Well, it turned out that I had permissions issues in restoring my Library folder. Library contains all of your user settings for every program you have installed. Without that folder's contents, you essentially have to reconfigure and re-register every program you have installed.

I proceeded to repair the Mac OS permissions database, which ostensibly should have given me rights to restore my previous Library folder to the OS. However, this didn't work as I had intended. It restored only a subset of settings. I was flummoxed.

So, I decided to try a full restore using the Leopard install disk. Using the USB keys I had created for the original Hackint0sh install, I booted to the install disk and selected the option to restore from Time Machine.

I selected the proper Time Machine image, waited about 35 minutes, rebooted, and...


For whatever reason, the Mac wasn't able to find the boot partition. I hadn't counted on this issue coming up. I was able to use the USB bootloader to direct me to the right partition, but not without it.

After days of frustration, I came across a suggestion in a forum online that I reload the DellEFI bootloader from the GUI. I did so, rebooted, and that fixed the problem.

So, it turns out that Time Machine does play well with the DellEFI for the Mini 9 Hackint0sh. It just required a little research, and some patience. And now, I have a pretty straighforward way of restoring from Time Machine backups in case my Mini has a HD failure, or if I decide to upgrade.

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.: posted by Dave 4:44 PM

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