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Jebediahsprinfield Jun 21, 2013 03:02 AM
Anyone around for quick help re OSX Lion nightmare?
Hello. I'm sure this is my fault because I was trying to be clever and deleted fonts on my system folder. Of course the system completely crashed and I seem unable to boot into safe mode. When I try, I sees mysterious, intentional graphic. There's a large lock like a deadbolt center of the screen and underneath it a long rectangular text box. The text box is filled with little circles that look like encrypted texts comprising password perhaps? To the right of the text box is an arrow and the cursor does appear on screen. When I click on the arrow the circles in the text box disappear and nothing else happens. Scary... Thanks in advance for any assistance you're able to offer
Spheric Harlot Jun 21, 2013 04:22 AM
Do you mean a padlock?

That's a firmware lock that prevents booting up your system with a different disk, to stop people from bypassing your system password by using a different system and accessing your disk from there.

What machine and OS version are you using, and what circumstances exactly led up to this problem? Rendering the system unbootable would force the Mac into searching for other boot drives (such as the installation disk), and if you have a firmware lock, that would require you to enter the password.

Note there is only a firmware lock if somebody explicitly set it up and entered a password. It is not enabled by default.
Jebediahsprinfield Jun 21, 2013 08:38 AM
Yes yes yes
That's exactly what it is. But I have no idea what could have happened. I use two external drives for backups and files, but all of my system apps, utilities and the boot drive itself are on the MacBook hard drive. I'm using an intel macbook circa 2008 on OSX10.7.3. I was trying to improve performance by deleting crap. I stopped the dock effects, unplugged peripherals, including drives (so no hard drives cuurently attached ither than the internsal), a monitor and speakers, and deleted A LOT of stuff I probably shouldn't have, including tons of fonts, sounds from GarageBand (which I've never opened), graphics from iLife (ditto). I'm sure I did set the firmware password on a previous security freak out, but haven't had luck with anything I've entered. Can the system administrator change it? What have I done? Thanks do much for responding.

In rereading your response, I'm even more confused. I'm on only one machine, and despite deleting stuff, haven't changed any passwords or assigned a different boot drive. I believe it was after I deleted more than 100 fonts (took quite some time) the desktop icons and dock disappeared and the screen kept switching back and forth between my wallpaper and a grey screen. Oh, i also stopped the desktop from drawing photos from a folder and kept the screen saver nartive (all to conserve RAM). The toolbar and cursor dis- and re- appeared in a loop. It remains that way when booted regularly and displays the padlock when booted in safe mode.

I downloaded lion from apple, I believe. Regardless, no installation disk that I can locate.
Spheric Harlot Jun 21, 2013 01:51 PM
What happens when you boot up the machine holding down the Cmd and "R" keys?

This should put you into Lion recovery mode, where you can re-download Lion from the App Store and re-install the system you appear to have borked in your quest to "clean up"… :)
Jebediahsprinfield Jun 21, 2013 03:12 PM
Thx. I'm with a genius presently. The firmware lock appears when I boot into recovery mode so I'm having them disable it now. This is actually a silver lining situation beause everything I want is backed up and I should have a machine that's 'like a virgin' upon reinstall of Lion. Thanks again.
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