4 Replies Latest reply: Mar 7, 2011 9:34 AM by drowl
drowl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Running OS 9.2.1 on Powerbook G3. Problems starting with extensions so started without and used Disk Aid. Disk Aid says "Keys out of order, 4, 206", cannot repair."

All I know to do is clean disk and reinstall -- of course I've lost my system discs.

Any thoughts.


Powerbook G3, Mac OS 9.2.x
  • drowl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Error in my e-mail, Disk Aid says, "Keys out of order, 4, 2026".

  • K Shaffer Level 6 Level 6 (11,680 points)
    If you could acquire an old version of Disk Doctor, (specific to that OS) it may
    be able to help repair the issue. Norton Disk Doctor was on a bootable disc.

    Tech Tool, also on a bootable disc (floppy etc) was helpful in some instances;
    however if the error is really on the root level of the hard disk drive, you may
    have to seek out some other more capable disk utility that can totally erase,
    map, and reformat the hard disk drive; prior to a complete full re-install of OS.

    There are limitations in how to go about repairing the issue without vintage s/w.
    This is partially due to the obsolete status of the computer, connections, & OS.

    Maybe someone in your locality has a box of old Mac OS software & utilities?
    Some of the utilities were commonly duplicated on other floppies or CD-R...
    A few resellers of vintage Mac stuff online may have something that'd work.

    Good luck & happy computing!
  • Don Archibald Level 10 Level 10 (101,290 points)
    Hi, owl -

    A "keys out of order" pronouncement by Disk First Aid indicates the direcories on the disk are damaged. Disk First Aid can diagnose that, but not repair it.

    You will need to boot the machine to an adequate repair utility CD in order to effect repairs.

    I would be a bit cautious about using Norton Disk Doctor - it has been known to thoroughly mung Mac volumes. Specifically, do not use any version of Disk Doctor which has an OS on its disk older than the one you are using.

    TechTool may be able to repair a "keys out of order" problem.

    The utility most recommended in these forums for such issues is Alsoft's Disk Warrior, which can make the necessary repairs with little or no loss of files. You may be able to still get one from Alsoft, but by phone or email request, not directly on-line. You can get their contact info here -

    More info on what a "keys out of order" error means - Alsoft - Keys out of order


    An alternate solution would be to deep-wipe the drive, while booted to an OS 9 Install CD and using the Zero-all-data or Low-level option (Functions menu >> Initialization Options). Note that doing this will erase everything on the drive, so first back up anything you do not want to lose. Also, a simple erasing function is not sufficient - though it is quick, it does not create new directory structures.
  • drowl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks much. I found my copy of Disk Warrior and rebuilt directory. Fixed key out of order but still no clear boot through extensions. Tried reinstall of OS but that failed.

    So I booted up with my OS Install Disk and then erased the disk. After reinstall of OS, boots fine. Now to reinstall all the software. :<) Glad I back up.