Flashing question mark on startup

Shanhux

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 8, 2013
5
0
Brand new here, apologies if this has been asked before.

Whilst casually browsing on my MacBook Pro this evening (mid 2010 model) it decided to freeze for basically the first time ever. After leaving it alone for 20 minutes with no change, I held down startup button and turned it off, and back on.

Upon startup a flashing folder with a question mark in it appeared. From googling I u durst and it can't find startup disk. Holding option key brings up 'Internet recovery' option only.

Have tried this, and am now in disk utility. Unsure where to go from here.

Upon clicking 'first aid>verify disk' it tells me the Mac OSX Base System appears to be OK. Does this mean my hard drive hasn't died. I do not get the option to repair disk so have no idea where to go from here. Only time machine back up I have is months old so would prefer to avoid this if possible.

Any help much appreciated!
 

teleromeo

macrumors 65816
Dec 2, 2006
1,286
34
kidnapped by aliens
A flashing questionmark basically means there is no valid system found to start up from. Since disk verification seems ok some system files seem to be messed up. Try reinstallation of the system.
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
It's possible but unlikely it's directory structures (do you have DiskWarrior?). Could be the hard drive, could be the hard drive cable. Do you have an external enclosure or drive bay? Can you remove the internal drive and try booting it externally?
 

Shanhux

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 8, 2013
5
0
Sorry for sounding like a complete idiot, but how do I boot it to anything but Internet recovery if that's the only option it gives me?
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,172
5,317
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
Sorry for sounding like a complete idiot, but how do I boot it to anything but Internet recovery if that's the only option it gives me?
Command-Optio-R

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It's possible but unlikely it's directory structures (do you have DiskWarrior?). Could be the hard drive, could be the hard drive cable. Do you have an external enclosure or drive bay? Can you remove the internal drive and try booting it externally?
If he is booting of the Recovery HD it can't be the cable nor the HD.
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
Sorry for sounding like a complete idiot, but how do I boot it to anything but Internet recovery if that's the only option it gives me?
You can't unless you have another bootable media to boot from? Carbon Copy Clone perhaps? Home made OS install disk? Original system disk, this machine came with Snow Leopard?

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If he is booting of the Recovery HD it can't be the cable nor the HD.
He's booting off Internet Recovery, not the Recovery HD (as I read it).
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,172
5,317
Home is everywhere and nowhere.
You can't unless you have another bootable media to boot from? Carbon Copy Clone perhaps? Home made OS install disk? Original system disk, this machine came with Snow Leopard?

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He's booting off Internet Recovery, not the Recovery HD (as I read it).
Yup
I could learn something from you, twice in one thread I made a mistake. :eek:
 

Shanhux

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 8, 2013
5
0
Thank you so much everyone for your replies. Think I may give up and attempt to find a mac store open here on a Sunday. Attempted to select restore from time machine in the first menu but it can't find a disk to boot to so am well over my head. Mac has gone from taking 5 mins to Internet boot to over 35 so I must be irritating it to say the least. As far as my know-nothing-about-computers brain can figure it, HD must have died? :(
 

G-Mo

macrumors 6502
Nov 6, 2010
466
2
Auckland, NZ
Thank you so much everyone for your replies. Think I may give up and attempt to find a mac store open here on a Sunday. Attempted to select restore from time machine in the first menu but it can't find a disk to boot to so am well over my head. Mac has gone from taking 5 mins to Internet boot to over 35 so I must be irritating it to say the least. As far as my know-nothing-about-computers brain can figure it, HD must have died? :(
Yes, it's most likely the HD has died. Had you noticed excessive beach balling recently? It's possible it's just the drive cable, it's a common issue in this era machine.