OS X Lion and self inflicted headaches

Posted: August 10, 2011 in Apple, backup, computers, Mac OSX, software, Windows
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

This post was going to be called “How to Remove your unwanted Boot Camp from OS X Lion and give yourself a major headache in the process” but that title was a little long.  Let me explain by taking you back a few days with me.

So you’ve installed Lion and realized you really don’t need that Boot Camp partition you set up a while ago (for me it was when I installed leopard) and want the space back? No problem. You are about 3 clicks away from regaining that HD space.

 *  * 

Simple really.  Just launch the Boot Camp assistant and select the “create or remove a windows partition” and click continue.  You are taken to the screen that tells you that you are about to restore your hard drive to a single partition.  What its doing is removing the windows partition you creating in Boot Camp and the remaining partition is automatically resized to fill the newly available space, even while you are using it and even if it is your startup disk.  Took about 3 minutes to complete for me, and just like that, the 20 gig space I had set aside for a windows XP install is removed.

The trouble is, you may accidentally remove or screw up your Recovery Partition too.  At least that’s what happened to me.  It wasn’t until I tried to use Apple’s latest tool, the Mac OS X Lion Disk Recovery Assistant (L.D.R.A.) that I found out the recovery partition installed when i upgraded to 10.7 Lion was damaged, or missing according to the L.D.R.A.

I tried to run it and got a message indicated that the Recovery Partition was corrupt or missing.  I tried it a couple of times just to be sure, then questioned whether the download tool was working properly and re-downloaded it again just to be sure, but alas it wasn’t the L.D.R.A. that was broke, it was the recovery partition.  (see that little Note in the screenshot? “…must have an existing Recovery HD”.  Seems it should also say WORKING Recovery HD)

So… What to do?

It seemed the easy fix was to re-install Lion, but the installer self-destructs and had removed itself as soon as it was completed the first time.

Thankfully, if you open the App Store on your Mac and hold the option button when you click on “purchases” you get the option of re-installing any of the apps you have purchased – even Lion.  So after a lengthy download I first copied the installer to another location on my Mac and then ran it again.  Well, actually truth be told I made sure I had a complete up-to-date Time Machine backup of my entire MBP, and right after that I ran the Lion installer again.  (Be warned, if you run the copy of the installer you made it will delete that one, so always make another copy before running if you want to keep it handy)   About 33 minutes later, after a restart I was once again blessed with a working Recovery Partition that I could then use the L.D.R.A. to create a recovery disk on an empty USB thumb drive. (thanks Moen for one i got that contained your latest catalogue info which i already loaded onto my PC for faster access)

 *  * 

Aside from iTunes needing to be updated again and losing the additional voices i had downloaded in “Speech” (i’m partial to that new sexy seductress Samantha) I haven’t noticed any issues with the re-install.

Whether the corruption occurred due to removing the Boot Camp partition or just a strange coincidence is still uncertain, but i’m not about to go thru the process of creating another Boot Camp partition and then removing it again just to test the theory.  I’m not that bored or curious… yet.  If I wake up thinking about it or have trouble sleeping not knowing then that may change, but for now, if for whatever reason your Recovery Partition gets screwed up, you can always fix that easily with a Lion re-install.



Please Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s