In OS X, the desktop no longer shows up and all programs crash whenever they try to "Save As..."
June 4, 2004 12:47 AM   Subscribe

OS X goes nuts (more inside)

My crash-proof OS X desktop has done something crazy. The desktop no longer shows up, and all programs crash whenever they try to "Save As..."

Is this the end of my installation, or can I do something about this sad fate?

I wonder if it has to do with removing a bunch of directories to delete "fink."
posted by inksyndicate to Computers & Internet (12 answers total)
 
well, fink installs itself in places that the gui of osx would prefer you not to meddle around in. so if you deleted something you thought was fink-only but wasn't that could definitely screw you over.
posted by rhyax at 2:06 AM on June 4, 2004


well, fink installs itself in places that the gui of osx would prefer you not to meddle around in.

Such as? My impression was that fink only installed stuff in the /sw/ directory.
posted by chrismear at 3:26 AM on June 4, 2004


You should only have needed to delete one directory to uninstall Fink, according to most things I've read about it. Have you tried repairing the drive's permissions using Disk Utility? Have you tried restarting?
posted by bcwinters at 5:27 AM on June 4, 2004


well, fink installs itself in places that the gui of osx would prefer you not to meddle around in.

This is wrong, unless you yourself go out of your way to tell Fink to use a different directory than /sw/.

Which directories did you delete?
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:38 AM on June 4, 2004


Does the folder ~/Desktop/ still exist? Check by opening terminal and typing

ls ~

You should see the word "Desktop" in there somewhere. If not, open terminal and type:

mkdir ~/Desktop/

and see if your desktop reappears. If that doesn't help, make a new user (System Preferences > Accounts) and see if it suffers the same problems. Chances are you've only broken your own account, not the system, and would be quicker off copying your files into a new user account.

on preview: those ~ marks above are tildes - the shifted keypress above alt on my keyboard here that looks like a wavy line - they're not very clear on screen here.
posted by bonaldi at 8:05 AM on June 4, 2004


I wonder if it has to do with removing a bunch of directories to delete "fink."

Most likely. What did you remove?

Another vote for repair permissions. For some mysterious reason, it works wonders.

Some other things to try:

- Install the 10.3.4 combo updater (I'm assuming you're on 10.2, otherwise download the 10.2.8(?) combo), even if you're already updated.

- Boot from your Panther (or Jaguar) install disc. From the initial install screen, one of the menu items lets you access Disk Utility. Open it and do a repair on your disk.

- As a last resort, re-install your OS, using Archive & Install. It's fairly quick and painless, and migrates all your settings.
posted by mkultra at 8:13 AM on June 4, 2004


If you do end up taking the Archive & Install route, make sure you check the "Preserve User Directories" option; Archive & Install without this checked will move your user directories around and probably aggravate you a bit.
posted by Remy at 8:28 AM on June 4, 2004


Thanks for all the help. What I did was remove "/sw."

The ~/Desktop folder is still there in the command line. It's just that my programs are running with a void in the background...not even a Finder menu will show up.
posted by inksyndicate at 8:39 AM on June 4, 2004


Is the Finder running? (Is there a black triangle pointing to the Finder icon on your Dock?)

make a new user (System Preferences > Accounts) and see if it suffers the same problems.
posted by sudama at 9:49 AM on June 4, 2004


No, no Finder. I'll try a new account.
posted by inksyndicate at 10:40 AM on June 4, 2004


Thanks, the Combo Updater did the trick. Thank you, Ask Metafilter! i will dedicate my next book to you.
posted by inksyndicate at 1:23 PM on June 4, 2004


yea, sorry. to me /sw/ is not what i would consider the area osx assumes people will be in. i didn't mean to imply it did some shotgun installation all over the place.
posted by rhyax at 10:14 PM on June 4, 2004


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