It was one of those days…

I have been meaning to upgrade my home iMac to Lion for a while now, with the end of MobileMe imminent (end of June) and wanting to use some features of iCloud on my iMac I knew that I would need to make the move.

What was key for me was to ensure that the process was as smooth as possible. The first thing I did was back up all my data files. Though I back up on a regular basis, this process was to ensure that all my photographs, video files and documents were transferred to a backup hard drive. Once this was done, the next stage was to run Disk Utility to repair permissions, that went fine.

So the next stage was to start the Lion install process, and at that point disaster struck!

The install routine failed!

Install failed. Mac OS X could not be installed on your computer. Mac OS X Lion couldn’t be installed, because the disk Macintosh HD is damaged and can’t be repaired. Click restart to restart your computer and try installing again.

Yes, tried again same message.

Ah well, I thought, so I then decided to restart back in OS X Snow Leopard… but the OS X Lion installer wouldn’t let me.

Tried Disk Utility to repair the hard drive with no success.

At this point I was glad I had taken a backup of my data.

After looking at Apple Discussions, I tried to use my Snow Leopard install DVD to fix the drive, however this didn’t work. After a couple of hours of trying to repair the drive using various solutions, I decided that I wasn’t going to be successful trying to do that. So made the plunge and decided to format the drive and reinstall.

However… that didn’t work! I kept getting errors with the OS X install routine failing to install on the drive. In the end I just gave up and using the iPad booked a slot at the Genuis Bar at my local Apple Store.

Taking the iMac to the store went very smoothly, they connected it up to their diagnostic software, confirmed that everything was working as it should, except the hard drive.

As I had taken out Applecare on the iMac, the cost of the replacement hard drive and fixing it would be covered, however it would take between 5-7 days!

Hopefully it will all be sorted by then.

Adding the printer…

I had been putting off adding my Canon MP600R to my new iMac, as the process on my 10.5 iMac was not simple.

Well things have improved with 10.6 as it was very simple and much easier than with previous versions of OS X.

The key though was to have some patience as it can take a bit of time for the printer to appear in the printer list.

Once though it “appears” then it is quite easy to add the printer like any other USB, network or Bonjour printer.

Once added though, run Software Update to get the most up to date drivers from Apple.

Next job to be able to scan from the printer.

Gurt Big Icons

One of the nice features of Snow Leopard is the 512 pixel wide icons – can you still call it an icon.

Safari Icon

Cult of Mac has a wonderful gallery of said icons with  Leander Kahney’s commentary on the detail Apple has in these icons is almost art in itself.

All the icons for folders and apps in Snow Leopard are now drawn in glorious 512 x 512 pixels. It’s a step toward making the operating system resolution independent, and perhaps also to make Snow Leopard a touchscreen friendly OS.

But it’s also obviously done just for the art of it. These icons are real beauties. They are full of great details and little surprises. One icon contains the words to a song, visible only if you blow it up to its full size.

See the gallery.

Installed Snow Leopard

I have now installed my copy of Snow Leopard. I have installed it onto an external LaCie Poulton 1TB Firewire drive for my iMac.

My current OS is Leopard 10.5 and that is also installed on a (different) LaCie Poulton 1TB Firewire drive. I am using external drives as the internal drive on the iMac was a little too small for me at 250GB – when did 250GB become too small?

So far everything seems okay and Snow Leopard appears a little snappier than 10.5.

My main concern is that EyeTV 2 is not compatible and so I will need to go out and buy EyeTV 3 which means that is not such a cheap upgrade as I would hope.

Adobe CS4 should work fine, and I already have iLife 09 and iWork 09, so no worries there.

Over the next week or so I will be installing various apps to check they work before moving over my data.

The advantage of not upgrading is that I can always fall back on my previous installation if it really doesn’t work out.

Currently installing…

Well having set up one of my new LaCie Poulton 1TB Firewire drives I am installing OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 onto it.

The external drive needed to be formatted for the OS X operating system and the partition map set up to allow me to install the OS onto it. All relatively simple with Disk Utility.

Then I set it to install, said it would take 47 minutes, wonder if those are real minutes or Apple minutes?

Snow Leopard has arrived…

I ordered my copy of Snow Leopard earlier this week and was pleased to receive it on day of release at about 7.3oam this morning!

I am intending to install it on a different external drive to the one I currently run Leopard 10.5 on as a fresh install and then install my applications as and when required.

I prefer to do it this way as I don’t have to worry about crowding the drive with unused applications or filling the memory with “helper” applications for apps I don’t run.

Of course the main downside is that none of my preferences are there, so I have to “add” them all back in again.