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Old 13.07.2011, 19:16
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Mac backup/restore question

My iMac died on me this morning. I was using it normally when the display flickered and went out, leaving me with a blank, black screen. Rebooting has not helped. If I press the on/off button, I do see my desktop for a second or so, then everything goes black again. I have taken it back to the local Apple dealer from whom I bought it 18 months ago... they are having a look to see if the problem can be fixed - first impression was that they didn't know what was wrong.

I have been using Time Machine to back my data up to an Iomega external hard drive, so in theory I should not have lost anything important.

What I am wondering is: is there any way I can access that external hard drive from a Windows-based PC to retrieve the files that are backed up (mostly photos and Word/Excel files) ? I suspect the answer is no - I have tried connecting it to a Windows laptop and, although Windows recognizes the hardware, it doesn't display as an external drive in Explorer, presumably because it is formatted for Mac OS.

Does anyone have any suggestions ? My current best plan - assuming the Mac is dead - is to take the external drive to a friend who has a Mac and re-transfer everything to my PC via a USB stick, but if anyone can think of a simpler/more elegant solution it would be much appreciated !
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Old 13.07.2011, 19:23
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

If it was me... I'd buy a Macbook. Then when iMac gets resurrected no worries. And if iMac is dead forever, you've got a Macbook.

And the world is at peace.
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Old 13.07.2011, 19:27
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

In an ideal world that's exactly what I would do... finances currently don't allow it unfortunately .
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Old 13.07.2011, 19:33
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

Maybe if you have a friend going to the US you could have them pick one up for you and bring it back in their suitcase. It's dirt cheap that way.
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Old 13.07.2011, 19:57
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

If your backup drive is formatted using the default Mac file system, i.e. HFS, you would need a program, such as MacDrive to be able to access the data from a Windows PC.
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Old 14.07.2011, 00:23
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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If your backup drive is formatted using the default Mac file system, i.e. HFS, you would need a program, such as MacDrive to be able to access the data from a Windows PC.
Thanks, I will look into this if they can't repair it - which I will know on Friday.
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Old 14.07.2011, 00:33
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

Hi Stephen, sorry to hear about this. I'm a computer dinosaur but we are both on Macs here and OH would be happy to discuss this with you. Where is your local Apple store????
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Old 14.07.2011, 00:40
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It sounds like the computer might still be alive but the screen is the problem. There is a connection on the back to connect an external screen. If you can do that you could then copy data to another device via USB.

Good luck,
Dan
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Old 14.07.2011, 09:09
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

Dan, that's what I am hoping. When I last switched it on, I could hear the characteristic sounds of it - for example - logging in to Messenger, so I think it was working away as usual and simply not displaying anything.

Odile - the shop is a place called Comac in Rue des Terreaux, they are currently looking at it and will tell me tomorrow what can be salvaged and at what price (not under guarantee any more).
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Old 14.07.2011, 09:12
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

I for one will be interested in knowning how it turns out for you. I'm also curious to know, if it is the screen/monitor that has burnt out, how expensive is it to replace.

I guess that's one downside to an iMac. But for all of its awesomeness*, I won't complain.


*another Americanisms...
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Old 14.07.2011, 09:20
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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Maybe if you have a friend going to the US you could have them pick one up for you and bring it back in their suitcase. It's dirt cheap that way.
Dirt cheap..? Hardly, the price is about the same here as there.

USA $999.- http://store.apple.com/us/browse/hom...co=MTM3NjU3MDM

CH chf. 1,199.- http://store.apple.com/ch-de/browse/...co=MTAyNTQzMzk

The USA one still needs to have sales tax added (about $80.-), here it's included. With the exchange rate favoring the franc that'll put them both within a few $ of each other.
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Old 14.07.2011, 09:30
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

999usd + 80usd = 1079usd @ 0.85 = 920usd

Difference of 280usd - and that is before you purchase Applecare in the US - works out around 1/2 the price of here with the current rate.
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Old 14.07.2011, 09:34
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

Another Mac question for the techies, we bought the MS office for mac for home and tried to download it onto a Mac Air. It didnt work several times then eventually the excel works but the Word doesnt. However if we open a word document saved on the Mac, it works. What are we doing wrong? thanks
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Old 14.07.2011, 11:03
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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If your backup drive is formatted using the default Mac file system, i.e. HFS, you would need a program, such as MacDrive to be able to access the data from a Windows PC.
Mmm, I downloaded a 5-day trial version of MacDrive but it didn't work. The external drive now shows up in Windows Explorer, but when I click on it I get a message saying that it is inaccessible and may be damaged. This is not looking good for my iTunes library and ten years' worth of mountain photos... .

I formattted the external drive Mac OS Extended (Journaled), as per the instructions in the user manual that came with it. Perhaps this is the reason?
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Old 14.07.2011, 11:08
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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I for one will be interested in knowning how it turns out for you. I'm also curious to know, if it is the screen/monitor that has burnt out, how expensive is it to replace.
Well... good news, the shop just called me and it's the graphics card that is dead. 400 CHF to repair but it's a small price to pay in order not to lose my photos, music and other stuff .
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Old 14.07.2011, 11:16
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

Mac OS Extended is HFS+ and should be accessible from Windows using MacDrive. That's what the tool is for, so not sure what to suggest other than trying to reinstall it, update Windows, reboot, stroke your laptop gently and whisper sweet nothings inside its air vent.

Alternatively, if you can't get it to work, perhaps you can find someone in your neighbourhood who has a Mac and who could help you transfer your files through his/her computer. How big is your backup?
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Old 14.07.2011, 12:33
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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Alternatively, if you can't get it to work, perhaps you can find someone in your neighbourhood who has a Mac and who could help you transfer your files through his/her computer. How big is your backup?
Yes, the "friend with a Mac" was my backup plan... about 20 GB of music, 10 GB of photos plus bits and pieces of text files. But it looks now like it's just the graphics card so I'm OK . Thanks for your help !
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Old 14.07.2011, 12:45
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

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Yes, the "friend with a Mac" was my backup plan... about 20 GB of music, 10 GB of photos plus bits and pieces of text files. But it looks now like it's just the graphics card so I'm OK . Thanks for your help !
Apples does Cloud storage. For photos and Music etc, this is the best backup option. Always available on any Mac.

Else any other Cloud storage provider. Google, Trend Micro (nee Humyo) etc.
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Old 15.07.2011, 18:02
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Re: Mac backup/restore question

It now turns out that it's the motherboard that is dead, not the graphics card. A whole different price range to fix the problem, to the extent that it simply isn't worth fixing.
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