10.4.6 Update Problems, Solution.

What with global warming and all, I shouldn’t be posting stuff about my computer. But I am in the hope that I can possibly help a few others out there with Apple’s latest (ultimately poor) OS update.
I have two computers – a G4 laptop and and G4 desktop (mirrored doors version). I updated my G4 laptop from 10.4.5 via Software Update to 10.4.6 and it’s working great. I always test out my laptop before I do anything on my way-more-important workhorse-of-a-computer G4.
Whelp, I upgraded 10.4.6 and, as I’ve found on many forums, my computer, when restarting would not restart. Upon initial restart, I got the beautiful gray Apple logo with the unbeautiful spinning gray wheel turning and turning and turning while my stomach did the same. Let be clear: I need that desktop to work in order to work. When my desktop computer is not working, I’m not working and I’m not happy if I’m not working because my clients are not happy if I’m not working and so on.
I’m right now doing a last-resort measure of Archive and Install, based on the instructions at MacFixit. In case someone wants to see how I got to this sorry state of affairs (and, as of writing, I don’t know if this will work), here is the order of things (this list is a compilation of all suggestions and recommendations I could find on the subject):

  1. After using Software Update (apparently, one should not actually do this but download the requisite update, I got a message saying that the update was being “moved to the Trash” and that it could not load the new software and that I should “try again.”
  2. I restarted. Nada.
  3. restarted while holding down Shift in order to disable many items. Nada.
  4. Because I could not get my CD-DVD-ROM drive open, I tried to restart from an external CD-ROM drive with DiskWarrior. The drive was not recognized. Nada.
  5. I restarted while holding down the Option key. This allowed me to boot into my backup harddrive (which thankfully contains a nightly backup of my desktop harddrive). The Mac started but I could do nothing except open the internal CD-DVD-ROM drive to load my DiskWarrior 3.0.3 disk.
  6. I then restarted holding down the Option, Command, “P” and “R” keys (not an easy job, admittedly) so that the built in PRAM would get zapped. Nada.
  7. I then restarted while holding down the “C” key so that DiskWarrior would boot. I rebuilt the directory and replaced it and then restarted while holding down the Shift key. Nada.
  8. I then came up with (what I thought) was a fantastic idea: start my desktop while holding down “T” to put it in Target mode. This essentially makes the whole computer one big, fat harddrive. I could then connect the desktop harddrive to my laptop while also connecting my backup harddrive to my laptop. A three-way! I would copy my (good) System folder from my SuperDuper!-enabled backup harddrive to my (bad) desktop harddrive and replace the good with the bad. I got an error not allowing me to do this. Perhaps that was a good thing? Note: during each step of the way, I went out of my way to protect my backup harddirve because without that, I’m shtupped. Anyway, nada.
  9. Next is Archive and Install, the last resort (save for erasing the damn disk and trying again or calling Apple India). I restarted the computer while holding down the Option key so that I could exchange the DiskWarrior CD for my Tiger Installation DVD by booting from my external backup harddrive (in all cases, the backup is connected via FireWire).
  10. I put the original Tiger disk in and then restarted again, having first removed all connected harddrives and checking that once more, again and then again.. The Tiger install disk came to attention and I told it to do exactly what I had read (about ten times) on MacFixIt.
  11. The DVD installed Tiger’s initial version (10.4.0) and it looks like everything (applications, files, directories, etc.) is there.
  12. I’m now going to download the complete combo update software up to 10.4.5 (the last, very happy, state my desktop computer resided within) and run it on my machine. It’s a massive 125 MB.
  13. Once the combo update is downloaded via Safari, I want to wait for Spotlight to index my whole computer. It might be okay to interrupt Spotlight from doing its thing but the 35 minutes it takes to index my harddrive is a small price to pay, I guess.
  14. Next, according to this article at The X Lab, I’m going to restart the machine using Tiger’s DVD and run disk utility and Repair Disk Permissions.
  15. I’ll then install the OS X Combo update and cross a coupla fingers so that I don’t gnaw them off.
  16. Finally, I’ll Repair Disk Permission from the harddrive after restarting the machine for the hundredth time
  17. Then I’ll restart just to make sure. And then I’ll test all the applications out. I’m assuming, unfortunately, that a few will not work.

More in a few hours.
Two hours later. Everything seems to be running fine. A few weird things like Word icons not showing up correctly on my desktop. Oh and this: everything seems to running more perkily. I’m exhausted.