flashing question mark folder on bootup

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by denismen, Aug 8, 2014.

  1. denismen macrumors newbie

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    Aug 8, 2014
    #1
    Hi
    I just got a mac and am trying to install Lion but everytime I start the machine without trying to install I get a flashing question mark folder on bootup.

    I have tried various remedies but nothing seems to work and I was told I may need to replace the SATA cable or logic board.

    I tried from install OS 10.6 fromj DVD, and USB key with Lion version and held down c key but only get a question mark folder each time.

    When I leave usb Lion stick in mac and reboot holding option key I get a folder with “EFI Boot” written under it and if I click on EFI Boot I get gray screen with 3 flashing icons repetitively flashing consecutively after each other...question mark folder/apple logo/circle with slash going from top left to bottom right similar to a no smokiung sign

    When I hold down the option key at bootup with no disk in mac the mouse arrow appears on screen and nothing else.

    Anyone able to help me out please
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #2
    Holding C at boot is only appropriate when booting from an optical disk. When booting from USB media like your Lion installer, you must hold Option. What happens when you hold Option with the Snow Leopard 10.6 DVD in the drive? It should show as a bootable option.

    The prohibitory symbol is indicative of a damaged system. This can occur from something as simple as bad permissions of system files to something as serious as corruption or utter removal of system files. It does not sound like a SATA cable or Logic Board problem since it is happening on the Lion USB. It is extremely easy to accidentally mess up the restore process of the Lion Installer.
     
  3. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Thanks

    Thanks for your reply but is there anyone who can advise me on how to solve this without having to bring it to a computer technician
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #4
    It is hard to say. Like you mentioned, it could be a bad drive, bad cable or even a bad logic board. The fact it won't boot from any source is not encouraging.

    What year model Macbook is this?
     
  5. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #6
    I was hoping it was one of the newer models that support Internet recovery as that would give you more options. Are you certain the Lion USB installer is good?
     
  7. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    cant be 100% positive as I got a copy from a friend to test mac when Tiger DVD wouldn't install
     
  8. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #8

    What happens with the Snow Leopard disk when you hold Option at boot?
     
  9. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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  10. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #10

    Is the optical drive known to be working?
     
  11. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #11
    I am not sure but it spins when the macbook starts.
    I have also tried with a usb optical drive and get the same results.
     
  12. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #12

    I would try to get a new USB Lion installer.
     
  13. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #13
    I am on a limited budget to get this Mac running so have you any idea how much a usb installer would cost, or how much it costs to download and activate the iso image
     
  14. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #14

    You would get it off the Mac App Store. Do you have another Mac that can be used to create the disk?
     
  15. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #15
    My son has the exact same Macbook with Lion installed
     
  16. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #16

    Do you have a FireWire cable?
     
  17. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #17
    I am not sure if the cable I have is compatible as its a standard ethernet cable which I have used on Windows computers to connect to the internet when troubleshooting or updating systems
     
  18. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #18

    A FireWire cable can be used to start the problematic MacBook off the other working one.
     
  19. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #19
    ok I will try that later.
    Is there any special steps I should follow or just connect them and switch them on
     
  20. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #20
    You insert the FireWire cable into each MacBook. You start the good MacBook and hold T until the FireWire logo appears. Then start the problematic one and hold OPT and select the hard drive of the other MacBook. See if it works okay with it over FireWire.
     
  21. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #21
    It didnt work. The good Mac just booted normally when I held T and I checked the network settings after I started the other Mac but it wasnt showing up
     
  22. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #22
    On the good MacBook, go to :apple: --> System Preferences --> Startup Disk --> Restart in Target Disk Mode.
     
  23. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #23
    there is no option to start in target disk mode...just restart
     
  24. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #24
    It doesn't show like in the screen shot?
     

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  25. denismen thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 8, 2014
    #25
    no there is no "target disk Mode" option.
    That whole bottom part of screenshot is not there
     

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