Talking about Apple – Grey Screen of Perpetual Death – Macbook Pro won’t start up

Very interesting fact I wanted to share – While my blog has been centered on Windows based applications, usually in the BI space, I converted to Mac several years ago personally, and now, there is no going back. However, the recent security and firmware updates to Mac OS X (10.5.8 for me), has caused much to do about nothing (headaches to say the least). For those non-Unix folks out there, I thought I would post the work around to fixing that pesky grey bootup screen with the Apple logo we usually love and the spinning wheel signifying the system’s attempt to boot through the processes. This neverending cycle is infuriating to say the least. You will need to log into Terminal to run Unix-based commands natively in order to fix.

The root cause fixed by this work around has to do with changing permissions on the MacIntosh HD. I thought changing the <Everyone> group was a smart thing…Little did I know then!

Well, looks like your fixing to get some more command line experience.

If you unknowingly/knowingly changed permissions to "everyone no access"
here is the process to address:
restart the computer

When you hear the chime, hold down the Command and S keys BEFORE the Apple logo appears

Enter the following commands:

/sbin/mount -uw /
(press return)
/bin/chmod -R o=r,+X /
(press return)
/usr/sbin/chown root:admin /
(press return)
/bin/chmod 1775 /
(press return)
/bin/chmod -N /
(press return)
(press return)

The strange thing with each line of command, it has interupted me by a flood of line after line and telling me it "operation not permitted" after each line, then at the very end "bad file discriptor".
I tried the /sbin/fsck -fy and one more command that was on the screen, then exit (it was not something you had in your notes), It scrolled through several things then rebooted and FINALLY  my login screen! Be patient.

 Email me at for more assistance.

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