9 Replies Latest reply: Nov 18, 2007 10:54 PM by Don Archibald
Craig MacKenna Level 1 (0 points)
Want to run Leopard on my systems. Learned that it does not include a Classic environment. That's OK, the few times I want to run something under OS 9 I'm willing to reboot to OS 9.

Unfortunately I find that, under 10.4.11, Startup Disk is willing to restart to the OS9 on my Powermac G4 dual 1.25, but when it does so I get a blinking question mark inside a floppy disk logo. The hard drive in the machine is the 3rd one that's been in there, the 2nd HD worked the same before I evicted it this morning, the original HD died long ago. Also have a new drive with nothing on it yet.

Tried re-installing onto the new hard drive from a retail 9.2.1 CD (white with gold 9). It doesn't want to run on the dual 1.25.

Read some other threads in this forum, and tried running the Software Restore function from the 3rd of the grey CDs that came with my machine. It said it installed Software Restore successfully, then it tries to run and asks me to insert the CD with one circle and one dot, which is already in the drive. Ejecting and re-inserting this CD doesn't make the program do anything.

Of course I'm running this Software Restore under 10.4.11 while its docs say it wants to be under 10.2.

Any thoughts on how to proceed toward a bootable OS on my G4 dual 1.25? I suppose I could install 10.2 from my original grey disk onto my new drive, then see if Software Restore would install OS 9 under that...?

PowerMac G4 dual 1.25, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (55,335 points)
    This article has detailed instructions for doing what you want to do:

    301468- Mac OS X 10.4: Restoring applications from a Mac OS X 10.2 Software Restore disc

    The bulk of the article describes a method that involves erasing your Hard drive and re-installing 10.2, then upgrading to 10.4 after the restore.

    But if you look at the last few paragraphs, there is another method offered.

    You can download a .dmg that opens to an Installer .pkg that installs a new version of Restore:

    Software Restore restores your computer’s original contents except Mac OS X. This includes the applications of Mac OS X and Classic support for Mac OS 9 applications that came with your computer. Software Restore does not restore Mac OS X, iPhoto, iTunes, iCal, iChat or iMovie. If you need to reinstall Mac OS X or these applications, use the Mac OS X installation discs that came with your computer.

    Message was edited by: Grant Bennet-Alder
  • Craig MacKenna Level 1 (0 points)
    I already had a new erased drive, so I booted the 10.2 install disk that came with my machine, installed 10.2 and then went on thru the Software Restore process under 10.2. It all went fine. After that, software update wanted to download several things including an update to 10.2.8, so I let it. Then I tried to restart to the 9.2.2 partition of the new drive. It showed a happy Mac for just a fraction of a second, then went to the flashing question mark inside the floppy disk icon.

    Does such a failing startup leave any log or other explanation of why the startup failed?
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (55,335 points)
    10.2 and earlier have a history of being sloppy about stepping on OS 9's toes.

    How did you get OS 9 on the hard drive in the first place?

    You may be able to go back to that set-up and "Re-Bless" the OS 9 System Folder:

    106426- Mac OS: "Startup Disk no longer has a valid System Folder"

    or you could try using Statup Manager to see if you could one-time override whatever the default is set to:

    106178- Startup Manager: How to select a startup volume

    One other possibility is using a PRAM Reset to erase any pre-conceived notions about what is the default Operating System:

    2238- Resetting your Mac's PRAM and NVRAM

    Message was edited by: Grant Bennet-Alder
  • Craig MacKenna Level 1 (0 points)
    OS 9 was just installed by the software restore operation. I have seen no problem selecting the startup volume, nor has Startup Disk made any objection about restarting to any choice. The OS 9 choice for each hard drive reads 9.2.2.

    I tried doing the whole install of OS 10.2 again including erasing the disk, then running Software Restore (for all the offered packages) again. No help.

    I tried blessing the System Folder by registering it in the Classic pane of System Preferences and restarting. Classic runs nicely, and this got me a nice "9" on the folder, but still the flashing ? in the floppy image. Tried re-blessing by double clicking on the System. Same result.

    Tried downloading the new version of System Restore that you noted, and running it on my old 10.4 drive, selecting only the "Classic support" box among the choices offered. This cut down the disk insertion to just the first Software Restore disk, not all 4, but still the flashing ? appears when trying to restart.

    The lack of Classic support in Leopard is particularly nasty if I can't get an OS 9 to boot!
  • Don Archibald Level 10 (101,295 points)
    Hi, Craig -

    A couple of thoughts, items I did not see mentioned earlier in this thread.

    In order for a volume (volume = an unpartitioned drive, or a partition of a partitioned drive) to be OS 9 bootable -

    • the drive/volume must have OS 9 drivers installed. When OSX's Disk Utility is used to re-initialize a drive, the option to install OS 9 drivers must be selected; it is not always 'on' by default.

    • the volume can not exceed 200GB. If the drive is larger than that, it must be partitioned such that the volume used for OS 9 booting is no larger than 200GB (190GB is a safe max size).

    And, the OS 9 version must be suitable for the machine in question; since you are using the original disk set that came with the machine, this requirement is met.
  • Craig MacKenna Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you, Don, sounds like you have hit upon the problem with your second bullet. Both of the drives currently in the machine are rated 500 GB.

    Guess what my next question is? What software can I use to partition my newest drive into 2 parts, one for OS 9? If there are several choices, is one likely to be more compatible with other software?
  • Don Archibald Level 10 (101,295 points)
    Hi, Craig -

    You can use OSX's Disk Utility to partition such a drive. You can either boot from OSX on one drive and redo the other; or boot to the OSX Install CD and redo either or both.

    It's pretty much straight-forward; there's a brief description of doing that here -
    -and more here -

    The critical items, other than volume size - make sure that OS 9 drivers are installed (that selection should be available on the Partition-tab page in Disk Utility); and that the volumes are formatted as Mac OS Extended.
  • Craig MacKenna Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks again, Don,

    My 500 GB drive is now partitioned into a 190 MB partition that is OS 9/X bootable, and a "rest of it" partition which holds data. OS 9 is bootable and all is well. Perhaps someday someone will survey drive sizes and wonder why so many OS X drives are 190 MB when no vendor actually sells a drive of that size

    After a day or two for stabilization I will go on to the joys of Leopard (10.5).
  • Don Archibald Level 10 (101,295 points)
    Hi, Craig -

    You're quite welcome - glad you got it resolved and working.