Just had me a little scare. My recent aggravation with OS X, specifically the uselessness of the Dock, and the lack of decent window management, caused me to try to go back to Yellow Dog Linux. I was using 2.2 back in the days when I still used my Powerbook, and I've been eyeing 3.0 ever since it came out.
The installation failed while extracting some package, probably because of a bad burned CD. When I started up my computer again, I got a big ol circle with a slash through it.
I'd backed up recently, but I didn't have my entries from today. Etan, being the loyal reader he is, was able to fish them out of his Camino cache for me. Thanks, Etan.
Diskwarrior didn't even see the drive, so I was none too hopeful. I was NOT looking forward to reripping ALL my CD's, reinstalling all my applications, reimporting my preferences, and sorting through my file lists to see what I might be missing.
I spent a while reading about Open Firmware, and let me just say that if you think the Unix shell is a throwback, wait until you see the Forth syntax on this shit. Absolute nonsense. Evocative of white lab coats and punch cards. Not at all helpful, but I knew there had to be some way to do it. There was no point during the failed installation attempt during which it could have been erasing my files or even my directory. I knew it all stlil had to be there, and some kind of partition map mumbo-jumbo would get it back.
A quick Google search for "lost partition map" led me to this article. Apparently, this is a known bug in the Yellow Dog installer. Nice one, guys. One full OS X install later, everything was back to normal. Whew! Close call!