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Problems during system reset from old time machine backup

I just managed to get a used logic board for my old MacBook air which I had not used over two years. I have a 256 GB internal SSD with osx Mojave on it. When I switch on the system it showed a white screen with a grey folder+ question mark. Using a bootable external USB drive it could go up to DiskUtility showing all the drives . I repaired all the drives. But Recovery server could not be contacted.

I see two drives: DPM HD and Time machine (TM)

Selected TM back up (a full back up exists from Nov. 30, 2020)

I see the message 'You cant restore this backup since this Mac's firmware does not support from APFS'

Tried to Install mac osx. That led to system hanging with the rainbow wheel.

Tried to go for the internet recovery but got the message that the old version of Mojave will not work because of some later updates.

Then tried to go through the terminal rout with erasing the container and reloading osx. No success here since the key 'r' is not working. That is very much needed.

Apparently three of the keys 'r', '4' and ']' are not working. Cleaned all the three keys.But there is no success. Can I use an external keyboard at this point?

Can not do PRAM/NVRM reset since 'r ' key is not working. I will sincerely appreciate any suggestion to revive the system. Thank you in advance.

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You can definitely use an external keyboard, even in recovery mode. It sounds like you need to upgrade the OS from an older OS to at least High Sierra on an installed drive. It doesn't even need to be your drive, An external drive would also do, but the Time Machine backup contains data which cannot be restored due to an inconsistency in file structure.

Connect an external keyboard. Install at least High Sierra on that drive. I would give a bootable USB installer a try if you have access to another MacBook since that's more reliable in my experience than internet recovery. and then give it another go.

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Hi Alisha thanks for your tips. I had also used a bootable usb installer with Mohave on it. Again that was prepared long time back. Being a usb flash drive it is painfully slow and I could not boot the system even after a hour. Using an external keyboard after erasing the old version I can load a new version of osx. You are suggesting High Sierra. Let me see whether I can manage to get that.


@dmahapatra I only say High Sierra because that's the first OS that supports APFS, but any other version the machine supports from High Sierra forward would suffice. If you're having issues with the bootable USB you have, it's possible the USB is to blame. Unless you have used it for other things with success recently. USB installer should be far faster than recovery mode. It usually installs twice as faster for me, since it's not reliant on downloading any part of the OS.


@flannelist Thanks again. My system is up with OS Mohave. Using an external keyboard did solve the issue. Now the issue is how to get the dead keys worikng. It could be the keyboard or the keyboard to motherboard flat connector. I ave to figure out that before ordering the part.


@dmahapatra Awesome! I'm glad to hear it. An external keyboard has gotten me out of trouble more than once. I am much more likely to think the keyboard is at fault here, expecially since it's only a few keys. But at least you have a mostly functional computer now!


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Durga Mahapatra sarà eternamente grato.
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