Apple acknowledges extremely rare Snow Leopard data loss issue; working on fix

“For the past month, some Mac OS X users have been reporting their personal data missing after logging into their guest accounts, and Apple now says it’s working on finding a fix,” Erica Ogg reports for CNET.

“‘We are aware of the issue, which occurs only in extremely rare cases, and we are working on a fix,’ an Apple representative said in a prepared statement Monday,” Ogg reports.

“The problem, when it occurs, goes like this, according to CNET’s MacFixit: when logging into the guest account on their Mac first and then logging into their regular account, some users are finding all their data to be missing and their accounts completely reset,” Ogg reports. “It doesn’t appear to be a widespread problem–there are fewer than 100 posts on several current discussion threads on the issue.”

Full article here.


  1. OK, well what about the (perhaps rare, but it’s happening on 3 different machines I own) issue of continuous, intense HD access that kills responsiveness of my machines??

    I’ve tracked the issue down to mobile me synching–in fact, it appears to have something to do with synching email and/or preferences. I’m not sure what the problem is, but I can’t believe it’s just me having the issue here. Furthermore, I really can’t believe Apple hasn’t fixed the problem by the latest point update to snow leopard!

    Guess I’ll just keep my fingers crossed and hope I am in fact not, bizarrely, the only person having this issue!

  2. @TFB. Oh, I do, I do…. Ironically, it’s some of this backing up that, I believe, is causing the troubles. I would consider it a local problem if it was only affecting one of my computers, but all three….? That seems more general. Though of course it could just be related to some really corrupted data somewhere in what I’m synching. Sigh. Need better diagnostic tools!

  3. This data loss seems to happen… after upgrading a system from pre-10.6 to 10.6 and then logging into the guest account first.

    Sh*t happens, but is Apple responsible for users trusting that the upgrade will go smoothly? Does Apple not provide easy and effective ways of backing up users’ data?

    For anyone that has been bitten by this bug, you have my sympathies. Clearly this is a use case that wasn’t ever tested or encountered during the months and months of beta testing? Amazing.

  4. @ BobWillsIsStillTheKing

    Nobody is blaming the user for the data loss bug. That’s Apple’s fault. But is Apple to blame for users performing a major software upgrade on their computers without having a backup?

  5. Generally you have to install third party malware on a windows box to do this kind of thing. Apple’s just making it easier for the end user by including it as a standard feature in OSX 10.6.

    You should all be thankful!

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