Last Wednesday this funky white screen with a question mark popped up on my Mac, I knew it wasn't going to be good. So, I took it to my local CityMac (we don't have an Apple Store here) and they delivered the bad news: in order to get my computer back, it had to be wiped. This doesn't sound so bad, but because the software was so corrupted, they couldn't access my hard drive, or the thousands of pictures I had saved on my laptop.
As disappointing as this was, I had to "ok" the wipe because I really needed my laptop back. Fortunately, I had backed up pictures a few months ago, so I didn't lose everything. It's so important to double or even triple save your things onto external hard drives because life happens and you never know when that scary white screen is going to appear.
So here is what you need to do: if you have an external hard drive, go back it up. If not, go purchase one (only $50ish) and then back up your computer or laptop!