Installed Leopard. Help. :(
October 27, 2007 9:14 PM   Subscribe

I've installed OS X Leopard and am very confused. First of all... where's all my stuff?

So I just installed Leopard and I did not choose the option to do a clean install. However, after installing... nothing that was on my desktop is there anymore. I can't find my files. Mail wants to start from scratch. WTF?

Also, though I can't find any of my stuff, my drive has not been zapped as I still have as much free space as I thought I would.

I thought maybe a new user was created (which is how the computer looks) but when I go into SysPreferences and look at Users there's just the one account and "guest". Again, WTF?
posted by Manhasset to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Try taking a look at all the files on your system. Download and install GrandPerspective (direct link to download). Open it, and when it brings up the “Scan folder” selection window, go as high up in your folder hierarchy as you can: you’ll want to select your hard drive, called Macintosh HD unless you renamed it. Press the Scan button.

When it’s done scanning (it might take several minutes), it will show you a visualization of all the data on your hard drive. Mouse over it and look at the paths that show up at the bottom of the window. When you find files or folders that look familiar to you, the full path name should show you where they’re hiding on your computer.
posted by tepidmonkey at 9:35 PM on October 27, 2007

You try a spotlight search for something?
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 9:35 PM on October 27, 2007

Go into [yourharddrive]/Users. See what's there.

Is there another folder with your user's name on it? Is there a "Deleted Users" folder? Check in there.

Also ... you did make a backup before upgrading, right?

If you didn't, I'd stop doing anything right now and clone the drive, maybe even take it to a recovery person, before you do something that causes irretrievable data loss.
posted by Kadin2048 at 9:44 PM on October 27, 2007

my drive has not been zapped as I still have as much free space as I thought I would

That may not be a good sign, since Leopard uses an additional 3.3 GB on top of what operating system you had previously. You should have less free space.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:26 PM on October 27, 2007

Perhaps you chose the option to "Archive and Install" which means your entire previous system is holed up in a directory somewhere on the file system.
posted by puddpunk at 10:52 PM on October 27, 2007 [1 favorite]

Namely, have a look in:

/Previous Systems/Previous System 1

And poke around in the Users directory in there to see if you can see anything familiar.
posted by puddpunk at 10:55 PM on October 27, 2007

"clean install."

You know what that means, right?
posted by blacklite at 3:46 AM on October 28, 2007

blacklite, he said he did not* choose clean install.
posted by lizzicide at 5:04 AM on October 28, 2007

Did you at any time have Panther (OS 10.3) on the computer? There have been reports of losing access to home folder by people who upgraded from 10.3 to 10.4 to 10.5.

This is what I would do in your situation. Open the Terminal application and type:

ls -la ~

You will see a listing like this:
drwxr-xr-x   33 pmbuko  pmbuko     1K Oct 23 20:57 ./
drwxrwxr-t    6 root    admin    204B Nov 23  2005 ../
Pay particular attention to the 3rd and 4th column (in the example, where it says pmbuko and pmbuko on the first line. In a proper home folder, almost every line but the second and perhaps a couple others should have your username listed in the 3rd and 4th column. If that is not the case, then run the following command:

sudo chown -R username:username ~

This command will make you the owner of all items in your home folder, as you should be. Now just log out and log back in and everything should be back to normal, including your desktop items.
posted by pmbuko at 7:55 AM on October 28, 2007

Something similar almost (coulda) happened to me. When I was installing, I was presented with the screen to choose which drive to install on. However, every other time I've seen this screen, I've been shown the list of drives with my computer's main drive listed first (ie, on the far left).

When I was installing Leopard, the drives were presented in a seemingly random order (ie, not alpha, not by drive type). At first, I didn't notice and just clicked the left hand drive, which would have installed the OS on one of my externals and, when I would have booted (I assume) I would be seeing something similar to what you're describing--an intact computer with all of my "stuff" missing and none of my users listed in the User preference page.

So, I would check your drives and make sure that you didn't install on an external.
posted by dobbs at 9:36 AM on October 28, 2007

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