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View Full Version : Irregular SD boot probs w backup firewire partitions


csrollyson
05-16-2007, 04:08 PM
This thread recreated from email exchange w s-p support in case it's helpful to others:

From: chris@rollyson.net
Reply-To: chris@rollyson.net
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 01:35:10 +0000
To: support@shirt-pocket.com
Subject: Problems w SD firewire startup disks

Hi SD,

I've been a customer for years, and I enjoy using SD for backups. I've successfully used SD for creating bootable backups.

I have a 250 gig FW with 3 partitions. One backs up "Mac 6" and the other "Mac 51." Both are bootable and have been tested many times.

I just upgraded my hard disk in the Mac 6 machine. I backed it up and booted from the FW backup. Used the machine for some work, all fine. Replaced hard disk. The HD wouldn't boot. Of course, my intent was to use the bootable Mac 6 backup (startup disk) to overwrite the new hard drive.

I intalled Tiger on the new HD (called "Mac 61"). I used disk utility. I repaired the disk, but no repairs needed. Permissions are grayed out, so I can't verify or repair. The FW drive mounts fine, all partitions.

Can you give me some suggestions?

Thanks! Chris
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From: Shirt Pocket Support
Reply-To: support@shirt-pocket.com
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 07:06 +0000
To: chris@rollyson.net
Subject: Re: Problems w SD firewire startup disks

Is it partitioned properly for your Mac (as APM or GUID, depending on CPU)?
--
Dave Nanian
Shirt Pocket
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From: chris@rollyson.net
Reply-To: chris@rollyson.net
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 10:39:48 +0000
To: Shirt Pocket Support <support@shirt-pocket.com
Subject: Re: (Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

Dave,

Yes, all drives partitioned correctly:
All 3 partitions on FW created with Disk U and operational for months. 2 partitions are startup disks. The new drive "Mac 61" partitioned into 1 partition w DU.

BTW, when I use System Prefs/Startup disk (starting fr. Mac 61, both FW partitions show up as startup disks but neither will start up when I select them and restart.

TIA- Chris
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From: Shirt Pocket Support [mailto:support@shirt-pocket.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 16, 2007 10:47 AM
To: chris@rollyson.net
Subject: Re:(Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

OK. So; what's different about the new drive? Daisy chained? Different port? It's likely *something*...
--
Dave Nanian
Shirt Pocket
----
From: chris@rollyson.net
Reply-To: chris@rollyson.net
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 11:24:48 +0000
To: Shirt Pocket Support <support@shirt-pocket.com
Subject: Re: (Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

Hi Dave,

Formerly-functioning SD backups (confirmed startup disks) lost their startup ability, and I don't know how to get it back. How do I check for daisy chain/ports? It's got to be something silly.

Here's all the evidence I have:

Characters:
-Mac 51 int. hd for TiBook
-Mac 6 int. hd for 17-inch PB
-Mac 51bu SD-created bootable backup partition on external FW
-Mac 6bu SD-created bootable backup partition on external FW
-Mac 61 upgraded int. hd for 17-inch PB

Process:
Backed up Mac 6 as normal. Restarted using Mac BU as startup disk. Did some work during the day; all normal. Shut down.

Replaced Mac 6 w Mac 61. Connected FW and booted. Nothing recognized. Oops, forgot to partition Mac 61 w DU, so shut down, started from Tiger CD. Partitioned Mac 61 w DU. Selected Mac 6 BU as startup disk. No dice. "?" on gray screen.

Installed Tiger on Mac 61. Selected Mac 6BU as startup. Restarted, Mac 6BU won't boot. Started holding down option key. Neither FW partition recognized as startup disk there, even though they are with System Prefs/startup disk. Shut down. Disconnected FW.

Connected FW to Mac 51. Selected Mac 51BU as startup. Won't boot. Restarted but now Mac 51 no longer starts up either. Disconnected FW and restarted. Won't boot.

BTW, for months I have used the FW as backup for both machines and have changed startup disks easily with both with no problems. What's the ghost in the machine?

Thanks- Chris
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From: Shirt Pocket Support [mailto:support@shirt-pocket.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 16, 2007 11:37 AM
To: chris@rollyson.net
Subject: Re:(Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

I have no idea, Chris. Seems kind of weird. What brand/model are the drives?
--
Dave Nanian
Shirt Pocket
----
From: chris@rollyson.net
Reply-To: chris@rollyson.net
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 12:20:57 +0000
To: Shirt Pocket Support <support@shirt-pocket.com
Subject: Re: (Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

The external FW is acomdata 250 gig. The upgraded Mac 61 is hitachi.

My gut feel is it's a permissions issue. In DU, I have "repaired" each partition of the FW, but no repairs were needed. However, the "verify disk permissions" and "repair disk permissions" buttons are grayed out.

BTW, I have also tried to repair Mac 51 by starting in target disk mode and connecting to Mac 61. Its permissions buttons are also grayed out. The permissions buttons on Mac 61 are functional.

It seems that I read somewhere that the default for FW drives is that they "ignore" permissions; selecting any of my FW disks and ?i (get info) shows that the "ignore ownership on this volume" is checked. Is that why I can't repair permissions?

Chris
----
From: Shirt Pocket Support [mailto:support@shirt-pocket.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 16, 2007 12:23 AM
To: chris@rollyson.net
Subject: Re:(Case 40595) Problems w SD firewire startup disks

I don't think it's a permission thing. I think it's likely a non-Oxford chipset in the Acomdata drive.
--
Dave Nanian
Shirt Pocket

csrollyson
05-16-2007, 04:18 PM
Hi Dave,

More sleuthing; been reading many useful threads on SD discussions, namely these:
http://www.shirt-pocket.com/forums/showthread.php?t=293&highlight=goldie
http://www.shirt-pocket.com/forums/search.php?searchid=143350
http://www.shirt-pocket.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1687&highlight=boot+external+partition

I do have a 3rd partition (empty) on the FW, so I thought I'd install Tiger on it and boot from it (you'd suggested this to Goldie). Using Tiger (10.4) CD, restarted Mac 61 with CD. It showed Mac 61 (17-in int hd), Mac 6BU, Mac 51BU and spare2 (the 3 FW partitions) as volumes; however, the FW partitions had red ! marks. When I clicked on spare2, the installer said it couldn't install tiger there because it couldn't boot from it.

Shut down. Ran Disk Warrior, rebuilt directory on spare2. No change.

I therefore conclude that the drive itself has experienced something that has made it unbootable. Please note that it was bootable yesterday. I've had no crashes. All the data is there. What could cause this?

Thanks- Chris

dnanian
05-16-2007, 04:41 PM
I really don't understand why you've moved this discussion to the forums, Chris. In general, it's pretty specific to your configuration and as such isn't terribly helpful here.

But, as I said, I think this has to do with the acomdata drive, which likely uses a non-Oxford chipset. The fact that Tiger didn't work on it, installed directly, backs that up...

csrollyson
05-16-2007, 05:04 PM
Hi Dave,

I am trying to understand why you think the Acomdata drive is not compatible with Tiger 10.4.9. As I've tried to explain, I was using one of its partitions yesterday as a bootable, SD-created backup drive. I have used it with Tiger for months as a bootable backup.

This is why I conclude that there's some glitch that I can fix fairly easily before taking more drastic measures. From the threads I referenced here, I see others have had similar problems, so I posted here. Other people have tried to use SD as I have, to help upgrade an internal drive, so I would think that sharing experiences would be helpful.

On another tack, I've also been rereading the SD user guide. Is page 27, "restoring when you can't boot from your backup," relevant here? I'm not very familiar with the "restore" function of DU. On page 28, the user guide states that SD is fully compatible with DU's restore function. Will it fix Tiger on my formerly bootable partitions?

I'm grateful for any advice you can give.

thanks- Chris

dnanian
05-16-2007, 05:15 PM
There are hardware peculiarities with non-Oxford chipsets that show up in weird ways. The drives can become unbootable (even though the contents are bootable), can fail under load... all sorts of things can go wrong.

I don't think there's a fixable "glitch" as such. The fact that they're not even showing up in the Option-boot list means that they're either partitioned wrong (as "Master Boot Record") or that the drive just isn't responding properly.

This all assumes they're properly copied with "Backup - all files" and "Smart Update" or "erase, then copy".

csrollyson
05-16-2007, 07:45 PM
Hi Dave,

Thanks for your response. Is there any way to test the chipset's incompatibility? This drive is advertised as Mac-ready, and I'd like to learn more about this to avoid future issues. At this point, though, that's a secondary concern; what I really want is my data back.

How do you recommend that I use SD to get back to normal? Here is what I have:
-Mac 61 is bootable with Tiger and nothing else
-Mac6BU has the data/apps/everything from my old drive

How do I best bring everything (except Tiger) from Mac6BU to Mac61 and have everything work afterwards?

thanks- Chris

dnanian
05-16-2007, 09:54 PM
How about clean installing Tiger to Mac61 and using the Migration Assistant to migrate from Mac6BU?

As far as testing the chipset: your install attempt basically did that. The installer doesn't consider it suitable for an install.