My Mac decided to play games with me, and so far it seems to have morphed into a PC 🙁

I had decided that I needed to clear out some space for some video capture (friends wanted a DVD produced for them) but after failing to free up much, I decided to swap out my capture hard drive and chuck in one that was going to be an upgrade for my Qube. Hmm, wasn’t recognised – odd. Tried another drive I had borrowed (both are Fujitsu, one 20GB, one 13GB), and it was fine, so I decided to cut my losses and just use the smaller one that the system could see.

Turning on the power yeilded a noise that was a cross between the Red Alert siren on ST:TOS and a power cable being shoved into a fan. Odd. Remove the new drive, and check that the cables are good. Same result. Pull the original system 10GB WD drive and hold it whilst starting up. Yup – it’s dead. The one drive that has never been moved or played with died… Hmm…

Now it’s 10pm or so on Friday night, and the capture was due to start on Sat. at 9:30am. So, chuck in the 13GB by itself, and try to boot from my OS X CD. Oh – that’s not bootable. Ok, boot from my OS 9 CD. Fine. Hang on – my mouse is dead. Great, my Wacom touch pad/pen/mouse needs extra drivers installed to work. I can’t figure out how to run an app under OS 9 without a mouse. Good job work is fairly close by, and I can borrow a USB mouse for the weekend.

Ok, 11pm I try again. That works. Install OS 9. Install OS 9.2.1 update. Install OS X 10.0, then install the 10.1 update. Then look for and download the required security patch followed by the 10.1 to 10.1.5 updater (45MB – thank goodness for my Cable modem), and then realise that it’s 1:30am. Go to bed.Start again at 8:00am, installing the various patches and updates (iMovie, iMovie transitions, iDVD, iPhoto), leaving the machine going whilst I race around and get some space cleared to set up the two extra machines that are arriving. Finish at 9:25am. Friends arrive at 9:55am – phew.

So, I’ve now learnt that I need a new hard drive (the only dilemma is 80GB or 120GB – 80 is a better price/GB, but 120GB is, well 120 GB 🙂 and that I need to learn more keyboard shortcuts for Mac OS (9 and X) ASAP, or buy a USB mouse for reinstallation blues.

The DVD was a blast though – took all of Sat and most of Sun to finish off the 2.5 minute demo, but that did involve lots of DVD-RW creation and gamma tweaking. Not to mention the fact that Sunday was spent redoing the whole thing with different colour values !

Now I just have to contend with random crashes when I shutdown (looks like a USB issue), and the fact that the Dazzle DV bridge was a total pain to get running reliably with iMovie, requiring far too many reboots to be a true Mac item (heh). I do know someone else with a Dazzle, and they have no such issues, so it might be time to start poking it gently to see what I really need to do to it.