Powerbook 540c boot issues

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malore's picture
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Joined: May 9 2004
Posts: 14

I've just inherited a PB540c this weekend. Plugged in the power adapter (the batteries were long ago drained dry, not surprisingly) was delighted to hear that ever familiar and great Apple boot-up chord. Unfortunatley, I immediatley heard a not-so-familiar higher pitched tone that sounded like a beep and then what sounded like the hard-drive spinning, searching. The screen then lit to standard boot gray, the mouse pointer appeared in the top left corner, already maneuravable with the track pad and then... nothing. No happy mac, sad mac or even a disk with a question mark. Just the pointer, some spinning of what sounded like the hard drive (though I guess it could've been the floppy...) and then even that spinning stopped. I've tried it over and over again to no avail. Once I even picked it up slightly and let it fall a few inches hoping to...well, I don't know what I was hoping to accomplish- what I was trying up to then wasn't working.

Can someone who knows more about these machines help me out? I'm woried that there is no indicators whatsoever from the computer. If it is just the hard drive, can I find a replacement and/or easily replace/repair it? Is this even worth messing around with?

Thanks

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Bolle's picture
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Joined: Apr 3 2005
Posts: 44
when you think that the probl

when you think that the problem is a corrupt HD, just get it out of the mac and try to boot using the floppy drive. if it works then look for a 2.5 inch SCSI HDI-30 Harddrive (very rare). i think these drives should fit into your powerbook.

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Joined: Aug 15 2004
Posts: 359
Blackbird boot

Hey,

With that machine it's far more likely that the problem is with the floppy drive and not the hard drive. If the floppy drive is having problems the boot sequence will bog down and from what you describe that seems to be it. Try a boot disk. That will preclude the hard drive from the sequence and if the floppy drive is dirty or fried you'll know it immediately.

malore's picture
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Joined: May 9 2004
Posts: 14
Thanks. Ok, I haven't had a

Thanks. Ok, I haven't had a chance to try that- but let's say hypothetically the floppy is corrupt. Is there a way to replace this OR even disconnect it so that it doesn't interfere with the boot process?

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Joined: Aug 15 2004
Posts: 359
floppy bird

Hey,

Yes to both. Floppy drives are dumb beasts. Purely mechanical so corruption in the sense that hard drives get corrupt doesn't really occur. Probably dirty or seized for some reason. As with desktops, there's a ribbon from the drive to the mobo (IIRC). Disconnect it from either end and restart. You might want to remove the drive and attempt a cleaning. There's several web sites that show you how to do that.

dankephoto's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 1900
disk in floppy drive?

Is there a FD in the floppy drive? If so, eject it, it's probably corrupt or otherwise naughty. To eject, either use a straightened paperclip in the appropriate hole, or hold the mouse button down as you boot up the Mac.

I've never had a dead or dying FDD stop a Mac from booting from a HD, and while I concede the possibility I think it unlikely.

dan k

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