Minor Disaster

Saturday I told my editors that I would have the first draft of my latest book finished by Tuesday “barring major disaster”. I should know better than to say things like that.

Yesterday afternoon I installed Apple Bluetooth Software Development Kit just to grab some documentation for Carbon’s Bluetooth APIs. Unbelievably, this installed some sort of kernel extension or firmware update or some weird thing that promptly hosed my system and sent my Mac into wind tunnel mode as soon as I rebooted.

Fortunately I was able to boot into safe mode and finish the last chapter and the preface, and e-mail them to the editors. Annoyingly, safe mode had disabled all my custom fonts, and neither Eclipse nor Word was particularly good at choosing replacements so everything was misaligned. Nonetheless, I did get the book in on time (Well, at least it counts as on time by the revised January 31 deadline. The original deadline was December 23.) so this only qualifies as a minor disaster.

My initial efforts to fix the problem by installing Mac OS X onto a different disk and then migrating my user account over, merely copied the problem, whatever it is, onto the new hard drive, which promptly went into wind tunnel mode as soon as I logged into the old account. So now I’m using Firewire target disk mode to move all my files and data over to my laptop, and make a spare backup. Once that’s done I’m going to try to reinstall Tiger on the original disk and see where that gets me. If that fails, I may just have to nuke everything, install fresh, and manually move files over. And all this assumes there’s not some underlying hardware problem. Activities will be a little slow here until this is complete.

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