How can I get my Mac Plus to start?
December 28, 2003 11:30 PM   Subscribe

I have a Mac Plus and it wont start [more inside]

The computer has the helpful icon of a disc with a flashing question mark when I start up. I have checked the connections to the external hard drive and they seem fine. It seems then that I need some sort of boot or rescue disc which I don’t have. I have a working on-line PC – is there anyway to download the right software and make it work on an old Mac? Or is it simply another problem? All I want to do is get my Word files off it and then retire the poor wee baby…
posted by meech to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
A Mac Plus looks to the floppy drive first for an OS when booting, so if you don't have a disk you can boot from, ask the guys on this list. Someone there will probably want to buy it, too.
posted by planetkyoto at 12:00 AM on December 29, 2003

You've probably done this (repeatedly), but just in case: turn off both the computer and the hard drive, then turn on the drive and wait a minute for it to start up, then turn on the computer. The Mac may not recognize the drive unless it's already online when the computer first starts up.

If the drive isn't bootable, and you don't have a boot floppy, you may have better luck detaching the HD and taking it to a local Mac service shop, where they could probably mount it and get the files off it for you.
posted by staggernation at 7:19 AM on December 29, 2003

Forget the damn lowendmac list, hell I'll buy it!

Seriously, you weren't real clear about whether it used to start, and now it doesn't... or, you got this antique boat anchor from somewhere and you're just trying to see if it works. In either case, a 400K floppy disk with a valid System Folder on it will do the trick, although it won't guarantee that you can get anything off that drive. At MacGeek, you can get a two part download for PC that has System 6.0.8 in it; one of the disks is the one you need to start the machine (scroll to the bottom of the page).
posted by JollyWanker at 8:02 AM on December 29, 2003

JollyWanker, you may be my new best friend! For I too have an old Mac that will not start. I've been carting this computer around for years...because I love it, and it's so early in the production run, that the interior of the case has the signatures of all the designers etched into the metal...which as I understand it, they stopped doing sometime after the SE30 started shipping. (I could be wrong, I've never really researched it.) Anyway, it stopped working a couple of years back and I never got around to figuring out what was wrong...but now, I'll at least know if it's a software issue. :)
posted by dejah420 at 7:45 PM on December 29, 2003

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