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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » OSX as a music workstation
HELP! Stuck in Single-User Mode with OS X 10.3.9!
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opg



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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 6:55 am    Post subject:  HELP! Stuck in Single-User Mode with OS X 10.3.9!
Subject description: It all started when the Finder wouldn't load
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It all started when the Finder wouldn't load, just the Dock and the wallpaper. No Finder, no desktop items, nothing else.

-Control-click on the Dock's Finder icon and relaunching doesn't work.
-Ran Disk Utility from the Install CD and the Verify action says everything is okay.
-Went into Single-User Mode and ran fsck (which I guess was the same as the Disk Utility's Repair/Verify), and it was okay.
-I then deleted/moved files specified on Apple's website:

mv /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/preferences.plist preferences.old

mv /Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow.plist preferences2.old

mv /Library/Preferences/com.apple.windowserver.plist preferences3.old

cd /Users/[affected username]/Library

When I start up now, I get a "generic loading screen and it goes straight to Darwin/BSD and asks for a username and password. I enter them in (the ones we use to log in/update, etc). It says, "Welcome!" then I don't know what to do. Typing "Exit" sends it back to the blue loading screen and then immediately back to the same Darwin login.

HELP!
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 7:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

OK, I am sure we can manage this.
First of all ( and I am sure you won´t like to her this ), you should keep in mind that you must have several active users on your mac. The superadmin is not the one to use and abuse on a daily basis. I am pretty sure you have been using the superadmin and you don´t have any other accounts.

First of all, which mac is this? A powrbook? WHich one?

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opg



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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

A PowerMac G4. Yes, we just have the one superadmin account. We don't log in on startup.
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Powermac G4? Which model?
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 7:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I'm not quite sure what you mean. The PowerMac G4 tower.

Oh, I see. According to this Apple page:

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=58418

I would have a PowerMac G4 (PCI Graphics), M7631 or M7826, I guess.


EDIT:
-No wireless networking
-Has the Superdrive
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

OK, you have the green meanie.

Did you ever try to boot it in "safe mode"? Hold down shift when you start up.

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 8:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

WHich drive is in the mac now? These came with 20/27/40 gig drives if I remember correctly. This particular moel will enjoy a ATA133 card and a ditto modern disk ( the builtin ATA thingie is probably 66mhz at max - possibly even slower ). A SATA card is also an option. The reason I say this is because the original drive is way too old and IMO they never were that reliable anyway. It is not unlikely that you might have a directory / disk problem anyway and "repairing" a 27 gig drive isn´t really much fun.
Any chance you can scan the disk with a Diskwarrior app.. from the Diskwarrior startup CD?

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

WHo knows.. try to log in with

root
your password

or

System Administrator
your password


Do you have other bootable drives?

Any FW drives you can install the OS on and then update it to 10.3.9 ?

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I tried booting in Safe Mode before getting in Single-User. I actually don't remember what happened there, but it must not have helped. I'll try that again to see if anything different happens, but I don't think that will do any good.

I got this Mac refurbished online from something-Dog. We have a 60GB hard drive only. I bought it in 2002 as a wedding gift for my wife. You can see why I panic (not that I did anything that terrible).

I was running a bittorent program and had succefully downloaded a video. However, it was in AVI format, so I started Cleaner 6 to convert it. I got impatient and cancelled it. I then downloaded some "AviComponents" thing that was supposed to make AVIs run in Quicktime. I then went online again and tried to view a clip of that guy getting sucker-punched at the last Cubs/White Sox game. The next time I restarted, there was no Finder - well, it was TRYING to load.

What exactly happened (before I started getting into single-user/Darwin) was the Finder started to load. The time and possibly the volume and Network icons on the top-right were visible for a second or two (no actual Finder bar behind them), then the computer looked as if it was still trying to load something- by which I mean it was going from spinning color pinwheel cursor to arrow, pinwheel cursor to arrow, pinwheel to arrow, endlessly.

I'll try out Diskwarrior and the other Darwin login ideas as soon as I can tonight, unless any of my details from the beginning of the incident gave you any ideas.
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have some ideas, but first I need some food. I reckon I will have to go for the usual norwegian yellow or gray stuff. Gimme 30 mins and I will be back.
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paul e.



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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

i wish you well with your techncal issue...and add that all you need is Divx codec and AC3 codec to play AVI on mac

boot up from CD and reinstall the OS on a partition?

otherwise , elektro 80 will have you covered

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Last edited by paul e. on Mon May 22, 2006 9:08 am; edited 1 time in total
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

"AVI"? Try VLC.


A safe way to handle this would be to clone the drive and then "fix" the clone.
When something like this happens the first thing to do is check the drive using something like DiskWarrior and ..also check for excessive fragmenting.

You could try to remove all the QT components in the library/quicktime and user/library/quicktime folders and then also move out all preferences files in the user/library/preferences to somewhere else. You might want to keep the iPhoto prefs though.. for now.. Then a restart..

If you get another drive runnning with a fresh 10.3.9 system, you could import the current user from the sick system and see what happens. You shuld of course keep 2-3 fresh admin users on the same system just in case. Very Happy

Do you know if you have some 3rd part preferences panels iinstalled? You knowm, stuff that shows up in the System Preferences.. ?

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

paul e. wrote:
i wish you well with your techncal issue...and add that all you need is Divx codec and AC3 codec to play AVI on mac


The AVI format is a container. AVI does not equal divx/AC3 only. VLC is your best first choice.

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 9:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
paul e. wrote:
i wish you well with your techncal issue...and add that all you need is Divx codec and AC3 codec to play AVI on mac


The AVI format is a container. AVI does not equal divx/AC3 only. VLC is your best first choice.


this is off - topic i guess..but i installed Divx and AC3 codec, and avi's work brilliantly....but i guess i will try this vlc too

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well, that simply means you have been messing with AVIs that are encoded with DIVX and AC3. Very Happy

Hmm, this also means you have been previewing horrorwood blockbusters?

Shocked

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Eh. I have been downloading copies of TV shows that the companies have said they will never make available for sale (MTV's the State, various episodes of MST3K - the Laserblast episode in particular). People don't encode things well half the time. I have a lot of tools to remedy this, but it doesn't always work. Sometimes there are problems with just the audio compression, and I have an app for that (demuxing, I believe it is called). I have already done the AC3 and DivX code thing and it didn't work out right. I was hoping the last component would work, but I never got to try it out. In fact - WAIT! That's why I restarted the computer. Hmm..... I will take you up on that QT preferences move.

But the good news is that I work at a college and have received more good advice. Academic computing supplied me with the install CDs, and Web Services told me how to get around the Darwin/BSD environment better. But I was told to try the reset button by the internal battery first to clear out the PRAM.

We'll found out in a few hours!
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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2006 2:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Not the QT prefs.. but ALL the user prefs.. AND move out all the QT components.. You will have to install the 7.1 QT anyway ( and this is really a security upgrade - one of the important ones )


The battery thingie will probably not make much difference. If you had had SSh on you could probably log in remotely and fix the lot but I doubt that you have SSH on. If you can get the command line running you could use that for making a new account a. Most probably it is the user settings that are "sick" but I would still suggest you thoroughly check the disk directories using something like DiskWarrior. Never attempt any kind of recovery unless you know the disk directories are OK.

The diskutils in 10.3.x aren´t much good. The toolpack will only solve simple problems. Running the diskutils from the system CDs won´t make much of a difference. ( OS X 10.4 is better hough )

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PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2006 5:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well, the the battery reset thing and the PRAM reset (Apple-Control-P-R) did nothing, as you suspected. Neither did removing the preference files. So, I used the install CDs a coworker lent me and did an Archive and Install. Everything is fine now.

I ran the Verify/Repair Permissions thing in Disk Utility (which isn't on the old OS X 10.1 install CDs), and there were a handful of corrections to be made. I did that first and then reset to see if that would help, but in the end, it was exactly how all "Help! My Mac..." forum threads end - "I had to re-install...."

Thanks for your help, though. I learned a whole mess of stuff! Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2006 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Quote:
It all started when the Finder wouldn't load…


Surely the preferred state of affairs!

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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

hello. i realize that this thread is old and that you already reinstalled, however, i feel that by posting this reply i can assist others who may fall prey to the avicomponents issue.

firstly, you do not have to reinstall your OS if you find yourself in single-user mode after installing these items. follow these directions, and you will be back to a GUI in about 4 minutes or less.

1. reboot your mac and hold down AppleKey + S until you boot into command line environment.

2. type the following after the prompt: /sbin/mount -uw /
and press [Return]

3. now type: cd /library/quicktime
and press [Return]

4. now type: rm -dr -f AviImporter.component FFusion.component XviD_Codec.component
and press [Return] **there are spaces between each component file**

5. now type: ls
and press [Return] to make sure those pesky things are gone.
**that is lower case "el" and lower case "ess"**

6. now type: reboot
and press [Return]

7. the mac will then be back where you remember it!
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