Book Review: Mac OS X Disaster Relief

Mac OS X Disaster Relief: Troubleshooting techniques to help fix it yourself,
by Ted Landau. 598 pp. Peachpit Press, 2002. $34.99.

Remember Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell singing “When Love Goes Wrong, Nothing Goes Right” in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes? That pretty much sums up the feeling when your Mac is acting up. The majority of Mac maladies don’t require a trip to the repair shop. What they do need is effective troubleshooting—that is, identifying and eliminating problems. Mac OS X Disaster Relief is a superlative guide to troubleshooting and, better still, preventing the problems that can arise in OS X.

Author Ted Landau—who also wrote Sad Macs, Bombs and Other Disasters, the standard work on solving problems in OS 9—is considered by many to be the guru of Mac troubleshooting. He draws on years of experience at the MacFixit web site ( and as contributing editor for Macworld Magazine as he guides the reader through diagnosing, recovering from and preventing crashes, freezes, printing problems, networking glitches and a variety of other woes. He also gives advice on copying, moving and deleting files, and introduces the reader to Unix commands that help the troubleshooting process.

Whether you’re an advanced beginner or a more experienced user, if you use OS X and are ready to tackle troubleshooting your Mac, Mac OS X Disaster Relief is the book to choose.
– Elsa Travisano

Copyright ©2003 by Elsa Travisano. This article appeared in the March 2003 issue of Newsbreak, the newsletter of MUG ONE - Macintosh User Group of Oneonta, NY.