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How to reset machine to an earlier start using Time Machine?


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#1 Twin B

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Posted 03 March 2017 - 06:53 PM

I used my iMac 2009 running 10.6.8 this morning and things were fine. Eight hours later I turn it on again and there's the spinning dial at the bottom for a few minutes - weird because I can't remember the last time this happened usually it just boots & I'm on my way. The changes I noticed were smaller-than-usual  icons on the startup screen (set now at 1920X1200 instead of 1600X1000), and when I started poking around I saw the screen saver in the preferences that I had it set at said "this screen saver can't be used with this OS, contact vendor for a newer version." 

 

The latest TM backup was done this morning at 10AM and before that at 9AM which makes sense because I turned the machine off at around 10 and left for the day.

 

So using TM with my external Western Digital drive, how can I reset the startup process to the way it was this morning? Hope this doesn't mean something more serious is going on.

 

Edit: I just tried to run Avast for the heck of it and the error msg said "You are not protected; cannot connect to service". Hmmmm. 

 

Another prob: I tried to run iTunes 11.4 with songs on my hard drive. I clicked on the arrow to begin playing & nothing played; the 2 bars to pause the song were showing after I tried to play, and the volume indicator which is usually at the top of the screen is missing. 

 

And now the machine is not recognizing a flash drive when inserted. 

 

Thanks.

 

Joe 


Edited by Twin B, 03 March 2017 - 08:53 PM.

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#2 smax013

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Posted 04 March 2017 - 02:52 AM

In essence, to "reset" your Mac using Time Machine is really more of a wipe the drive, re-install the OS, and then use Migration Assistant to restore all your data and settings from the Time Machine backup. There is really no easier way.

To do this with macOS 10.6.8, you would need to boot from the 10.6 install optical disc that you should have. Once it boots from that disc, you then either wipe the disc and then start a new macOS install or just start the macOS install and do a clean install (i.e. wipe every thing from it). You can then restore from the Time Machine disk during the install (towards the end, it will ask if you want restore from a backup or migrate from another machine) or wait until after the install and use the Migration Assistant app after you boot up the Mac for the first time after the install.

It is all fairly straight forward, but if you need a guide, then you can follow this one except don't worry about step one (you are installing a new drive and this guide assumes that) and step 3 is really about wiping your old drive (rather than formatting a new drive):

https://blog.macsales.com/18064-bouncing-back-from-disaster-how-to-restore-from-your-backup

Based upon the things you describe, you might want to do a few other things before going the route of nuking the drive, reinstalling the OS, and restoring the Time Machine backup.

The first thing to try would be to log into another user account. If you don't have one, then create one. This can test to see if it is just some corruption issue with that particular user account.

The second thing to try would be to run the Apple Hardware Test from one of the macOS install/recovery discs that came with your Mac that you hopefully still have.

#3 Twin B

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 11:52 AM

I wanted to get back to you about this issue. After reading your post i decided not to wipe the drive. I did the hardware test & there were no probs. Then I did a safe boot, holding down the shift key while booting & lo-and-behold the 'problem' reappeared. So I booted normally & the machine started as usual. Seems like the machine went into a safe boot originally & I didn't recognize what was happening but things are OK now. All I can do is shake my head. Thanks for your response SMAX. 


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#4 smax013

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 10:05 PM

I wanted to get back to you about this issue. After reading your post i decided not to wipe the drive. I did the hardware test & there were no probs. Then I did a safe boot, holding down the shift key while booting & lo-and-behold the 'problem' reappeared. So I booted normally & the machine started as usual. Seems like the machine went into a safe boot originally & I didn't recognize what was happening but things are OK now. All I can do is shake my head. Thanks for your response SMAX.


This would make sense...booting into Safe Mode does tend to dramatically slow down the boot process from what I recall (been I while since I have done it), which you described in your original post.

Glad you got things "back to normal".




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