dual boot - boot loader?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by derFunk, Dec 24, 2004.

  1. derFunk macrumors newbie

    Dec 24, 2004
    Hi guys! I'm new to the forums and I'm also pretty new to Macs in general. I bought a refurbished Mac to learn on before I spend the BIG bucks for a G5 system, and I'm trying to set up the system right the first time. I figure my question can be best answered if I give you my system specs, so here we go:

    PowerMac G4 500 (Sawtooth, with AGP slot), upgraded with Sonnet Encore 1GHz
    512MB PC100 RAM
    Radeon 8500 64MB AGP
    onboard 10/100 Ethernet, sound, 56k modem
    original 10GB hard drive running OS 9.2.2
    new 120GB Maxtor hard drive running OS X 10.3.7
    6x DVD-ROM (internal)
    52x CD-RW (external, firewire)

    Here's my question: is there a way to dual-boot without:

    reinstalling any OS's
    using System Preferences to choose my boot drive.

    May not really be THAT important, but I came from the x86 world where if I dual-booted Linux and Windows, I had a nice menu-driven boot loader where I could choose my OS. If I'm cold booting my Mac and I want to boot into the OS that's currently NOT my default, I have to boot into one OS and swap to the other. I know that I won't be doing much in OS9, but I need to keep it around, as the last firmware update (and there probably won't be another, but just in case) only ran on OS 9, not OS X.

    Or am I just lazy looking for another solution? ;)

    Thanks in advance!
  2. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    If you're speaking specifically of OS X and Linux, you need to wipe the drive and reinstall OS X and Linux because you need to reparition the drive. However, the Mac OpenFirmware has a built-in boot loader. Just hold down the option key at startup and you can select from all of your bootable paritions/drives connected to your system.
  3. Westside guy macrumors 601

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    I believe Yellow Dog's yaboot essentially does the same thing as grub/lilo does on the x86 side.
  4. mduser63 macrumors 68040


    Nov 9, 2004
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Just hold down option when you turn the computer on, and you'll get to a screen where you can select which OS to boot. Also, if OS 9 is your default, but you want to boot into OS X, you can just hold down the X key while turning your computer on. That will boot into OS X one time, but will leave OS 9 as the default for the next time you restart. Unfortunately, there isn't a similar one key shortcut for OS 9, you have to go the option key route for that.
  5. derFunk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 24, 2004
    The option key is perfect...actually better than having to go through a boot loader ALL the time...since I won't start up in OS 9 very often. Thanks for all the responses.
  6. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    That's actually a nice computer. It should last quite well. There are Macs running OS X 10.3 even older than that.

    Also, press and hold C to start from a CD, and T to start into FireWire Target Disk Mode. (Makes computer a big, expensive, firewire drive)

    Do those commands before you hear the startup noise, else they might not work.

    "Welcome to the light side of computing."

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