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Blinking file folder question mark on start up!

78152 Views 6 Replies Latest reply: May 13, 2010 1:12 PM by Cheryl Tompkins RSS
Cheryl Tompkins Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Feb 12, 2008 3:25 PM
My mac was working fine I shut it down because the mouse froze like it does some time. It turned back on with a white screeen and and a blinking file folder with a question mark on it and stays that way until it shuts down! Its a white screen behind it and it makes the start up noise. What is going on and how can I fix it? I already kept it off for a while then took out the battery.. any other suggestions?
Mac Book, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • Dakota Level 3 Level 3 (970 points)
    Well it can't find a system to boot (?), so you need to boot from your CD. Once booted from the CD, run Disk Utilities to see what's wrong. If it sees the drive, then repair it, fix permissions, if it does not see the drive, then it might have gone south. If it can't be repaired, then you will need "DiskWarrior", to see if it can fix it. If you have a current Backup......

    good luck
    Powerbook iMac, Mac OS X (10.4)
  • Jonathan Kurtzman Level 4 Level 4 (1,100 points)
    Try the "Repair" option before you try to verify. You already know it can't be verified because it isn't starting up properly. If the problem isn't too fundamental, then Disk Utility can repair the damaged data and the disk will be fine.
    bunch of macs, Mac OS X (10.5.1)
  • Dakota Level 3 Level 3 (970 points)
    You need to boot from the CD to repair the hard disk, did you do that? Another option is to erase the disk and then do the install. Do you have a backup?

    Message was edited by: Dakota
    Powerbook iMac, Mac OS X (10.4)
  • Kavemon Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I got this same message after using Disk Utilities to create a new partition formatted in FAT 32, booting from my windows XP CD, reformatting that partition to NTFS, and installing Windows XP on that partition. (So I can dual-boot without using Boot Camp Beta, which is expired)

    I worked around it just fine by holding the "alt" key when booting, which (after entering my firmware password) allows me to select the boot partition. It's like I somehow selected "Neither" for my default startup disk.

    It's possible that your problem goes beyond this.

    By the way, in my Windows reformat, I did end up deleting several 200 MB partitions that appeared on my looked like this:
    (partition) (size) (name) (file format)
    Partition 1: 198 MB [unknown empty
    Partition 2: 250000 MB [Windows FAT32
    Partition 3: 202 MB [unknown empty
    partition 4: 850000 MB [Unknown unknown
    this one is formatted in the mac file system, but XP (of course) doesn't
    recognize it....
    partition 5: 201 MB [unknown empty

    Anybody know what's going on here? I sucessfully merged the first three from the XP cd, but I don't know what's up with Disk Utility and why it leaves these spaces after partitioning.....
    2.2 ghz MBP 15.4", Mac OS X (10.4.11), Dual-Boot Windows XP


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