7 Replies Latest reply: Apr 28, 2008 4:33 AM by Grant Bennet-Alder
Chris Baker3 Level 3 (760 points)
I have a PowerBook G4 550 Mhz, running 10.4 and OS 9.2.2
I run in Mac OS 10.4
Have been trying to find out my the 60 GB HD is full. I do not have any files to speak of having gradually trashed them.

I have removed other users which was of no significance as they were mistakes i made when first I got the machine setting up accounts.

Thinking that HD storage on the OS 9 paortion of the disc may be the problem I changed the start up disc to OS 9.2.2

The system will not restart and I cannot get back into the OS X world.

The system will not recognise a CD on resart even with the C ket held down.

I have tried to reset the PRAM but never get a second chime.

When the system starts up I get the following:

Square box with flashing globe followed by
folder with question mark alternating with OS9 Faces followed by
floppy disc icon with question mark followed by
OS9 classic smile face
and the system just sits there.

I cannot reload system X beacuse the system will not boot from the CD.

I would welcome some expert help please.


iMac DV Graphite, G4 Powerbook, Mac OS X (10.3.x)
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (55,305 points)
    If you have an OS 9 CD, try booting from that. If you can get it to go and the Hard drive mounts on the desktop, try running Disk First Aid. It may fix some problems, if Disk problems are keeping you from booting up Mac OS X CD.
  • Chris Baker3 Level 3 (760 points)
    System booted with OS9 install
    the HD is not mounted so cannot proceed with first aid
  • eww Level 9 (52,975 points)
    Hi, Chris. Your hard drive may not have OS 9 drivers installed on it. If it doesn't, that's why OS 9 can't see it. The drivers can only be installed when formatting the disk, and formatting erases it completely. So unless you're prepared to do that, you aren't going to get anywhere starting up in OS 9.

    Exactly what happens when you try to start up from your Tiger installer disc while holding down the "c" key? And is it a retail Tiger disc, not supplied with any Mac but purchased in a stand-alone shrink-wrapped box?
  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (55,305 points)
    Now at least you know your CD Drive is working.

    Sometimes you can get an insight by running Drive Setup. If eww is right that you don't have OS 9 drivers installed, all Drive Setup will tell you is that the drive is there but is "not supported" or "controlled by unknown drivers or encryption software".

    If it says "This disk can be initialized" or simply "Not Mounted", you can sometimes "UpDate Driver" and "Mount" it.
  • Chris Baker3 Level 3 (760 points)
    EWW and Grant

    As this old G4 is not used as much and I have all my data on a newer G4 and backed up.

    I decided with your comments to initialize the unmounted HD by loading in the OS9 installation disc and using the ultilities.

    Then I loaded OS9 now I am loading OSX

    will let you know how it goes.

    Thank you both for your help.

    Its a bit of a shock to have to work in OS9 after all these years in OSX.

    I will also run Disc Warrior as soon I as can


  • Chris Baker3 Level 3 (760 points)
    Powerbook back up and running OSX loaded AOK.
    Still cannot boot up from CD drive by holding C key down.
    Think it must be getting a little flakey in it's old age.

    Thanks for you help

    at least it's useable.

  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (55,305 points)
    The main thing we need the CD for is to boot from the CD as an alternate boot device to Repair the Hard Drive. (Disk Utility in 10.3 can't even Verify the Hard drive when the System is already using it.) The other function used often, "Repair Permissions" can be done "live" while the System is running.

    You can get most of the benefit of the"Repair" function in a pinch by booting from the Hard drive while holding down the Shift key to start in Safe Boot mode. When the kernel is loaded, but before Mac OS X is brought up, it will do a disk check and make Repairs if needed, then proceed to load Mac OS X with most extensions off. Enough of the System is working that you can use the Finder to move or delete something that is getting in the way.

    You generally have to reboot normally to get your usual work done, but at least you know your Hard drive has been checked.