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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay so I turn on my iMac tonight, and the dock has been put back to the original setting, minus all my app icons.

iTunes and Mail have been wiped clean, no email and the account settings have gone. The "Music", "pictures" and "Documents" folders dont have their icons showing and now look like regular folders.

The files I had sitting on my desktop are gone.

Its as if the preferences for any Apple software stuff have been erased.

Has anyone heard of or seen this before?

Help!
 

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You (or someone) renamed, moved or deleted your User folder, probably.
(Don't do this)

The reason everything has disappeared is because you either have launcheed the machine with a new user account, or your existing account has created a fresh User folder because the original User folder was unavailable (moved, renamed or deleted)

Your Desktop, your preferences, your Mail, documents, music, pictures ... everything lives in your User folder.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, and just this second, I figured that out. Im mad at myself now for doing such a stupid thing.

What happened was I changed the name of my "Home" folder from my short name to my full name and then restarted my iMac.

As a result, all my apple preferences (Mail, Safari, iTunes, Documents, Pictures, Movies, Files on my Desktop) have gone reverting those apps to the way they were when I first started up the machine out of the box..

Thanksfully 3rd party apps are stilthere and functioning but my workspace preferences have been deleted and the apps are just as they were when i installed them... grrr.

Does anyone know how or IF I can find my lost files (i.e. email from Mail, files that were on my desktop)?
 

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How full is the hard drive? On my old iBook, I would frequently be in a situation where I had less than a gig free - and on occasion, there wouldn't be enough space to write to preference files, etc., and the OS X defaults would be used (resulting in a dock reset to factory standard, apps acting as though they were brand-new, etc.) - but I never lost any files / mail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the tips everyone.

I changed the Home folders shortname back to what it was before and I was able to recover my MP3 files but I still cant see the files that were on my desktop, or my email files or any of the files that were in my Documents folder.

I know the files are still there because my Hard Disk memoy is the same now as it was before i changed the home folder name, its just not letting me "see" the files.

Is there a Utility I could download that can help me to see "invisible" files? Would that be of any use?
 

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similar problem...

my problem is similar. i turned on my mac this morning, with the same prefs and setting gone. BUT i didn't change the name on the user folder or move it. the only thing that i'm suspicious of is last night it shut down fine, but the night before FileVault took way too long before shutdown. could this have gotten corrupted and messed everything up? will i be able to get back all those emails in thunderbird? (i've found the music for itunes)
 

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my problem is similar. i turned on my mac this morning, with the same prefs and setting gone. BUT i didn't change the name on the user folder or move it. the only thing that i'm suspicious of is last night it shut down fine, but the night before FileVault took way too long before shutdown. could this have gotten corrupted and messed everything up? will i be able to get back all those emails in thunderbird? (i've found the music for itunes)
We've covered File Vault before. Usually because something got screwed up. My general recommendation is do not use File Vault. Critical files can be stored on an encrypted disk image (create it in Disk Utility). Back up of critical files is then very easy just copy the .dmg file to an external drive or a USB memory stick.
 
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