Flashing ? on startup.

Discussion in 'Mac Help/Tips' started by doubleplay, Jul 24, 2003.

  1. doubleplay macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2003
    For some reason my B&W starts up with the flashing "? folder" before it finds my start up disk. It just started doing this about 3 days ago. I tried PRAM , but nothing has changed. How do I fix this?
  2. strider42 macrumors 65816


    Feb 1, 2002
    Re: Flashing ? on startup.

    go to the startup disk control panel and select your hard drive. incidentally, zapping the pram can potentially cause this problem. I'm assuming with these instructions you are running OS 9. i don't know the procedure in OS X, but I imagine its more or less the same.

    its a good idea to run a good disk utility (or at least disk first aid) just to make sure you don't have any directory corruption which could be causing issues.
  3. Mblazened macrumors regular

    Dec 20, 2002
    The Valley
    startup off an os 9 cd and see if you can see your hard drive.
  4. jimthorn macrumors 6502a


    Apr 24, 2003
    Huntington Beach, CA, USA
    Back up anything important soon, in case the problem gets worse, like it can't find your drive at all.
  5. GeeYouEye macrumors 68000


    Dec 9, 2001
    State of Denial
    Re: Re: Flashing ? on startup.

    It's the same in OS X.

    Incidentally, it can caused by selecting a CD as the boot drive at one point, and then not having the CD in the drive when you start up. When that happens, you get the flashing ?, until it starts searching for another drive to boot from and finds the HD. If you manage to get the CD in the drive before the ? goes away and the smiling Mac/Gray Apple Logo appears, it'll boot from the CD.
  6. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020


    Jul 6, 2003
    Los Angeles
    I'd go with this one. One of my Macs started flashing the question mark for a while before booting, then it would freeze sometimes while accessing the drive. After replacing the drive everything is great.
  7. groovebuster macrumors 65816


    Jan 22, 2002
    3rd rock from the sun...
    Since we are at it... Not a long ago I moved to bigger HDs in my Quicksilver. I cloned the old drives with "Carbon Copy Cloner" and everything worked just perfect. No problems with anything afterwards.


    I was rushing too much and forgot to install the drivers to boot/mount in MacOS 9. I didn't notice that before until I wanted to boot the machine in OS 9 for the first time since months. I selected OS 9 in "Startvolume" and hit restart. Then the trouble begun. The machine was literally dead. I only could boot from my OS 9 installer CD, but then the internal drives didn't mount (of course). Even the Mac OS X Installer CD didn't work anymore as well as zipping the PRAM. I had to replace one of the drives, install a Mac OS 9 and then OS X. Then I could boot from that fresh OS X system and select my original OS X system HD as startup drive again...

    My question now: Is there any way to install the MacOS 9 drivers without having to clone the completet drives again and initializing them freshly? It takes hours to do that and I just don't have the time for that at the moment...



Share This Page