mac se help

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Let me preface this by saying I am not a computer genius (but hopefully someone out there is).

I've got a Macintosh SE that I would like to get back in working order. Whenever I turn it on, a blank screen appears, and then a box with a picture of a floppy disc with a blinking question mark. When this happens, I have no floppy inserted. It will only work when I insert a floppy with system files on it. After this, there is no desktop, but I am able to use any files or games on the disc itself fully. It has been like this for years, I would like to fix the problem if possible so I can use it again.

I have abundant floppies with various copies of system files, games, etc.

Can anyone help me out and tell me how to make things right? Thanks.

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Joined: Aug 15 2004
Posts: 359
SE help

Hey,

Here's the poop: The blinking "?" mark means that there is no boot system on the SE. There could be two reasons for this. The first is that there is no hard drive in the SE. Early SEs didn't ship with a hard drive. The second is that there is a hard drive but no system or no valid system is on it. Use the floppy that you boot with and see if there are utilities on it. Use the Apple hard drive utility to check for a drive. That pretty much determines what happens next.

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not sure if...

Did the SE's have SCSI? if it did, and you have an external SCSI Iomega Zip Drive, you can use the Zip as a hard drive, than put an OS on that. But I'm not sure if it was when SE FDHD came out, that they added onboard SCSI with a SCSI output.
Anyone clarify this for me?

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SCSI stuff

Hey,

Yes, SEs have SCSI. SCSI first appeared on the Mac Plus.

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i'm pretty certain it does ha

i'm pretty certain it does have a hard drive, as years back it worked fine and did not need a disc to boot up at all.

on different discs there are different files. the one i've been using has 'Finder' and 'System' on it, and another that works has those as well as 'Imagewriter', 'Main Dictionary', 'Easy Access', 'Mouse', 'DA Handler', 'Startup Device', 'General', 'Multifinder', 'Keyboard', and 'Key Layout'. However, whenever I try to open any of these, I get the error message "The file 'Finder [or whichever i'm trying to open]' could not be opened/printed (the application may be busy or missing)."

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what is a scsi?

what is a scsi?

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that floppy

Hey,

If my addled pea brain is actually working, what you've got there is a system 6 disk that was designed to work off the floppy instead of installing. So head over here:

http://home.earthlink.net/~gamba2/syslist.html

and down load a system 7.0 boot disk and use the utilities on that to see what's going on inside that SE.

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i wandered around the site a

i wandered around the site a bit, but am uncertain which to download. how would you suggest transferring it?

i'm currently working off a pc. i have blank discs for the mac, and blank ones for the pc, but neither computer will read the other's.

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oh, de gamba
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http://macfaq.org/software/ma

http://macfaq.org/software/macos.shtml#Q1.1.6
"It's reasonably common that someone gets an old used Mac and it has no operating system on it. Often, these people don't have anything other than a PC to access the Internet. As long as your Mac is an SE FDHD or Mac IIx or higher, you can use these directions compiled by Alex Harrington (aka "fastkeys") to get that Mac up and running. Due to irreconcilable physical differences in the floppy drives of PCs and Macs, a Mac 128, 512, Plus, original SE, or un-upgraded II cannot use this procedure. If you have one of these, you'll need to get a Mac that can read PC floppies or find someone willing to make floppies for you."

sounds like i'm out of luck.

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i found a disc with a system

i found a disc with a system and finder on it, and when i open them i get the message 'an application can't be found for this document', which is a different error message. does this change anything?

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Re: what is a scsi?

indigocliche wrote:

what is a scsi?

You are kidding.....right?

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no....

no....

themike's picture
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SCSI- Small Computer System I

SCSI- Small Computer System Interface.
Its used for connecting peripherals like hard disks, CD drives, scanners, and numerous other things.

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disk with a system

Hey,

The system or finder is not designed to be opened. They're not applications in that sense. What you need is a disk with a system and untilities so you can check the hard drive and see what's on it.

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where can i get one? ebay?

where can i get one? ebay?

or otherwise, if i find one on a disc, how can i tell it to be different from these other ones?

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Posts: 297
Disks

What are the labels on the floppy disks you have? You might have enough to reinstall the os. You'll be looking for disks labelled "System Startup" and "System Additions" for system 6 or ones labelled "Install 1" "Install 2" "Printing" "Fonts" "Tidbits" and "Disk Utilities" for system 7.

If you don't get a third icon on the desktop along with the floppy disk and the Wastebasket then you'll need to reformat the drive first. To do this you'll need the "Disk Utilities" disk or "System Startup" disk. You'll need the utility "Apple HD Setup SC" to format the HD. If that does not find it the disk is dead and you'll need another. Expect to pay around £5 on eBay for a 1-4GB drive.

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i just found another stash of

i just found another stash of floppies!
amongst them, i found:

Macintosh
System Tools
Disk #1 of 2
Version 5.0

Macintosh
System Tools
Disk #2 of 2
Version 5.0

Macintosh
Utilities
Disk #1 of 2
Version 5.0

Macintosh
Utilities
Disk #2 of 2
Version 5.0

Macintosh
Macintosh Printing Tools
Version 6.0

this stuff looks like it could help. now what?

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what do i do now to install t

what do i do now to install the os?

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installing . . .

Hey,

Boot from the utilities floppy. On the floppy should be Hard Drive setup or something similar. I can't recall exactly what it's called in ssw 6. It will find your hard drive. Any boot disk should show the hard drive so the problem may be more than just a blown system. I mention this because you should be aware of the variety reasons that the SE isn't booting. If that's the original hard drive, it could have given up the ghost and using the hard drive setup will only tell you that by NOT finding the hard drive. If the hard drive does show up and there is a system with an unblessed system file, I would suggest -- unless you have mission critical files on the drive -- to initialize the hard drive. That will wipe all the information off of it. After wiping the drive, you can install a new system.

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installing . . .

Hey,

Boot from the utilities floppy. On the floppy should be Hard Drive setup or something similar. I can't recall exactly what it's called in ssw 6. It will find your hard drive. Any boot disk should show the hard drive so the problem may be more than just a blown system. I mention this because you should be aware of the variety reasons that the SE isn't booting. If that's the original hard drive, it could have given up the ghost and using the hard drive setup will only tell you that by NOT finding the hard drive. If the hard drive does show up and there is a system with an unblessed system file, I would suggest -- unless you have mission critical files on the drive -- to initialize the hard drive. That will wipe all the information off of it. After wiping the drive, you can install a new system.

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for the record, i have no cri

for the record, i have no critical records on the harddrive and have no problem losing whatever is on there.

on system tools 1, i have:
system folder
-system
-finder
-multifinder
-scrapboard file
-clipboard file
-general
-sound
-mouse
-da handler
-key layout
-monitor
-keyboard
-color
-startup device
-easy access
utilities folder
-installer
-apple hc sc setup
-installer scripts

on system tools 2:
-installer
-teachtext
system folder
-system
-finder
-multifinder
-scrapboard file
-clipboard file
-general
-sound
-mouse
-da handler
-key layout
-monitor
-keyboard
-color
-startup device
-easy access
-(various printer applications)

upon inserting utilities 1, it claims 'This disc is unreadable: Do you want to initialize it? (Eject/ One- Sided/ Two- Sided)'.

utilities 2 has:
font/da mover
-font/da mover
-fonts
-desk accessories

however, whenever i start the computer, the only two icons present are that of the floppy disc and the trashcan. as it is the original harddrive, it sounds more like what you are describing. is there anything i can do for that scenario?

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Posts: 359
Aha!

Hey,

On system tools 1, you have Apple HC SC (which is more likely HD SC) and that is the little bugger you want to launch and look for a hard drive with.

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upon launching hd sc:Driv

upon launching hd sc:

Drive selection failed.

Unable to locate a suitable drive connected to the SCSI port.

Make sure at least one drive is correctly connected and switched on.

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Posts: 359
hd sc

Hey,

I think you're having toast for breakfast. Two possibilities. The first is that the SCSI cable has become detached or has failed in some way (unlikely) or the hard drive is visiting spirits and is no longer listening. I'd look around for a replacement. Be advised that system 6 can't see anything bigger than 2 gigs and that much space would be silly anyway. One last note: when you start the computer can you hear any hard drive activity? Whirring? Clicking? Burping?

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Re: hd sc

williamahearn wrote:

Two possibilities. The first is that the SCSI cable has become detached or has failed in some way (unlikely) or the hard drive is visiting spirits and is no longer listening.

Or there is no hard drive in the box.

If you need a new one, make sure it's 50 pin SCSI and not any of the other types.

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when i turn it on, it beeps,

when i turn it on, it beeps, but then all i here is a little background noise, sounds like a fan or something.

thanks for all the help, but i dont think i have the ability to install a new harddrive myself.

ah well. the primary reason i wanted the computer working better was to play crystal quest, so it's not that hard of a blow.

thanks again.

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Posts: 359
Sure?

Hey,

Us 'fritters could walk you through it. A little electro-adventure. If all you want to do is play Crystal Quest then you could -- as someone previously suggested -- attach a zip drive and install a system and the game on that.

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maybe.... how much could i

maybe....

how much could i get a hard drive for? and where?

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Posts: 359
Hard drive

Hey,

Any chance you're in the US?

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yep.

yep.

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Well . . .

Hey,

To replace the hard drive, you're going to need a small 50-pin SCSI hard drive, a 9" or so T-15 Torx driver (available at Sears) and some serious patience. I think coious (sp?) had the best idea in using a SCSI zip drive. The best place -- that I know of -- to get any or all of the previous items is the LEM swaplist which has recently reopened to new members.

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supposing i got a zip drive,

supposing i got a zip drive, what exactly does it do? does it act as a substitute for a harddrive? i'm unfamiliar with LEM, so i searched on ebay.

there are lots of different sizes (100MB, 2GB), which is preferable? do i really need that much space on an old mac, and are these the right kind that will work with an se? (i'd prefer to spend as little as possible)

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in a completely unrelated top

in a completely unrelated topic, i just inserted a different disc to try and boot up the computer, and i recieve the message 'Sorry, a system error occurred.', with the only option being to restart. ok, bad floppy. trouble is, it wont eject the disc, so is now stuck in a continual loop of system errors. any way to get it out?

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Posts: 359
zip and zap

Hey,

You need a 100MB SCSI NOT USB zip drive. Remember, Macs of that era had a 20 or 40MB hard drive. That's the most you will need. As for that floppy, pull the plug on the SE and get a paperclip and straighten it out and push it into that little hole under the slot for the floppy disk. There's little device beyond that hole that will physically eject the disk.

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thanks, i got the floppy out.

thanks, i got the floppy out.

is this the kind of drive i need?
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=51077&item=5216371776&rd=1

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Yes and no.

Hey,

What's wrong with that picture? No wall wart or AC supply. Don't buy it.

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hmm....
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I only . . .

Hey,

I only checked out the first one. It doesn't come with a disk but everything else is there. Be warned (if you don't know): Zip drives were susceptible to COD or click of death syndrome. So check out the feedback of the seller or e-mail them and ask directly about click of death. Other than all that, the zip drive should be plug and play with the SE.

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what is the the click of deat

what is the the click of death syndrome?

to clarify, what i want included is:
drive
power supply
scsi cable
disc

and you're certain one of these can plug into a se?

if i plug this in, it works like a hard drive and i dont need a floppy with system files on it, correct? or do i insert the floppy into the drive? and can i store additional files beyond an os onto it?

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clicks and clacks

Hey,

Click of death syndrome is manifested by the zip drive clicking loudly as it tries to access information on the disk. Then it dies after killing your info. There was a rash of COD zips in the late '90s. Anyway, this is the setup. You connect the zip drive, turn the computer on and insert the zip disk. Use your install floppies to install a system on the zip disk. It will function as an external hard drive. The cool part is that you can put different systems on different zip disks and only change the zip disk instead of switching a hard drive. You can install games, word processing, etc., as you would on any hard drive.

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do you install stuff via the

do you install stuff via the macintosh? the only other computer i have access to is a pc.

and can you install newer programs, or just what i have on discs for my current os?

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Posts: 359
yup

Hey,

Yeah, you connect the zip to the SE and it becomes an external hard drive. When it mounts (appears on the desk top), insert the install floppies that you have into the SE's floppy drive and install a system onto the zip. Then restart (be sure to pop the zip disk back in since it will eject when the computer is turned off or restarted) and then install whatever you have on floppy the same way. You can install whatever the system will support. You're not going to be running Photoshop 6.

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one note...

you will want to have the Zip drive with the disk in it (that is a must if you don't want to have to find a driver) before starting up. If you start it up before having the disk in it, it will not recognize the drive at all without a driver (and good luck finding that...) for some reason, if you have special SCSI drives hooked to a Mac at starup, it treats it as a regualar HD that normally works with without a driver. Same, goes with Jaz (Zip Disks are like high capacity floppies, they have a flexible (physically) media that bends, where as jaz are really like an HD. It has solid platters that don't bend. Kinda like a Hard drive without the arms, or electrical components.) The Jaz are the 1-2GB Size and are bigger than Zip. The nice thing is, if you want to spend the extra $, you can search for a Jaz drive and 1 or 2GB Disk, but it will run you more. But the Jaz are a lot heartier, and have a higher speed, and are generally closer to being an actual HD.

The Jaz in my PC allows me to boot an OS in no time flat. Even on an old SCSI card and a fairly modern OS (Windows 2k Pro). On that SE, it would fly...

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i think i'm gonna try and get

i think i'm gonna try and get a zip (i'm very broke right now). should i install a different os on it, or stay with what i got?

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when i buy a zip drive, do i

when i buy a zip drive, do i need to make sure i get one with the software? it claims the software is available online, but i only have internet access through a pc, not the mac i want it for.

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Stay with . . .

Hey,

Don't fatten frogs for snakes. First get the thing working and then worry about what system you need. As for the software, this is kind of complicated. Always get the software. You may need it at some point. The software is for the system to recognize the Zip. In this case, since the only device with a system on the SCSI chain is the Zip, the Mac will recognize it by default. Also, the Zip software has a load of stuff you don't need. All you need in a typical case is the driver.

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so.... i do want the software

so.... i do want the software with it? the majority of them come without, but if it's important i'll shell out the cash.

i'm thinking one of these, but there is no software.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=51077&item=5218233889&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW

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that darn software . . .

Hey,

You're loading system 6 or system 7.0 on that SE. The software Iomega has on CD will NOT be for those systems. If you DO need the driver at some point, it can be emailed or sent by floppy.

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just to mention it

My emulator choice: http://minivmac.sourceforge.net/
simply amazing.
this emulator simulates a compact mac. Add in a copy of crystal quest and you can skip all this. (Dont think for a second that I would skip it, I love fixing old Macs.) I had some trouble using a zip drive as a hard drive for an old compact mac. Finding drivers can be a pain in the neck. I would get an external SCSI HD to use. I like to have fun with this stuff, and I probably have more money to spend on it (I know $ can be an issue) Does the forum have a wiki or an FAQ? Bill Ahearn is dispensing a ton of info, would be nice to capture it all in one place for the ages.

dvsjr

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to revive an old thread....

i finally came across a zip drive- help?

i've got an iomega zip drive (100mb) with the cable and power supply.

however, i don't have a disc for it. is this the type i need?
http://www.iomega.com/direct/products/detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=24139&FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=27075393&ASSORTMENT%3C%3East_id=26890319&bmUID=1135529683950

once i get a disc, how do i proceed?