10.4.11 hangs at startup and finally died. Time for Leopard

I was getting to the Apple logo and it stopped there. Booting (or “starting up”) into Single-user mode, which for the uninitiated is done by holding down Command and S while the Mac is starting, I once again saw the last line was

Workaround Bonjour: Unknown error: 0

Which last time I had fixed by reinstalling the OS X 10.4.11 Combo updater.

Things you can try which don’t work include:

safe boot, running fsck, clearing caches, reinstalling 10.4.11 combo updater (this might work for you)

However at some stage fsck did tell me about errors for these two crucial system files:

file:///System/Library/Frameworks/Accelerate.framework/Versions/A/Frameworks/vecLib.framework/Versions/A/libBLAS.dylib
file:///System/Library/Frameworks/Accelerate.framework/Versions/A/Frameworks/vecLib.framework/Versions/A/libLAPACK.dylib
Well, to save you some searching, the Debian folks have this to say about libLAPACK
“LAPACK version 3.0 is a comprehensive FORTRAN library that does linear algebra operations including matrix inversions, least squared solutions to linear sets of equations, eigenvector analysis, singular value decomposition, etc”
Surely the mac needs that at startup!!
Now the other one is
“BLAS (Basic Linear Algebra Subroutines) is a set of efficient routines for most of the basic vector and matrix operations” So I can understand that when that is corrupted then we would see the hanging at startup symptom.
Recognizing that these were dead, I set off trying to copy them from another known-working OS X 10.4.11 PowerPC. I used the terminal command cp -R for this, copying the whole Frameworks directory. Or perhaps I used ditto. Can’t remember. Either way these shared libraries seem to have special permissions that were not honored during the copy, or there was something else wrong.
In the end I did my upgrade to Leopard.
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~ by connectionfailure on 26 September, 2008.

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