Rolling Back to Snow Leopard

This brief post is coming from a freshly minted Snow Leopard install on my Macbook Pro.

I wrote about issues with OS X Mountain Lion recently, and repeated disk and permissions repairs have not fixed the problem after all. Format and reinstall was the only option, with all of the anxieties of backing up and hunting for software keys.

I did consider doing a clean install of Mountain Lion (complicated by lack of physical install media, but it can be done) but I decided to roll back to 10.6. There are a few things I’ll miss from 10.8 like multi-touch and full screen, but I won’t miss the beach ball of death every time I try to access a network share or open a web browser.

As for the differences in Mail and Finder, I can mostly take or leave them–but it is nice to have the old “outlook” style column layout for mail instead of the iOS format. The coloured icons in the Finder are a nice bonus.

For the benefit of anyone coming here from a google search, here were a couple of issues I had to deal with:

  • Applications software from the supplied disk (bundled iLife apps) wouldn’t install because of an “unknown error”. This turned out to be an expired certificate. Rolling the system clock back two years fixed that issue.
  • Trying to delete the sparsebundle in the Time Capsule from OSX kept hanging; I eventually resorted to connecting with a Windows machine (TC as SMB share) and deleting all 700Gb of previous Time Machine images.
  • I couldn’t back up my main iPhoto library–the database was corrupt so it wouldn’t copy, and the machine was too unstable to rebuild it. I resorted to View Contents on the library and extracted the Master images. OK, so I’ll have lost any cropping or thumbnails generated, but that only applied to a few of them (most of which have been published her anyway).


p>And that was about it–hopefully beach balls will be fewer from now on.

Maybe it was the in-place upgrade of Mountain Lion that screwed up my hard disk, and a fresh install would have fixed things… but right now I have a working computer with versions of Mail and iTunes I prefer. Jolly good.