Broken folder at start up

in macOS edited January 2014
I normally work all in OS X. But today I needed to switch over to 9 for some work in Photoshop. When I finished and restarted in OS X, I briefly saw the happy Mac and then an icon of a folder split in half. That is where the computer froze. I tried everything from zapping the pram to taking the battery out and then reseating it. I could not get it to start in X or 9. I finally just had to reinstall all my software.

Does anyone know what this icon meant and what you're suppose to do when it rears its ugly head.


  • Reply 1 of 8
    bkuchtabkuchta Posts: 18member
    Hmmm... never seen a folder split in half before... and I've seen a lot of weird stuff on mac's...

    Acouple of things you could have tried:

    1. If you have anything iBook or newer, hold down the option key on boot to try to select a different system folder.

    2. Boot up off of an OS 9 disk and try to select a startup folder that way.

    Weird... Are you sure it wasn't a folder with a question mark on it?
  • Reply 2 of 8
    I've seen the torn folder icon before too...

    It was caused by a seriously damaged disk. It took me nearly a week to properly check and repair everything. I strongly recommend you get some tools like Alsoft's DiskWarrior or Norton Utilities to verify that your drive is still in proper working order.
  • Reply 3 of 8
    Thanks for the replies. I have owned several macs since my IIc in college and normally I can work my way through things. Sometimes it has been through searching the threads in these forums. This time however I was stumped with no way of searching.

    I have a brand new Dual Gig machine so I hope my disk is not seriously damaged. Anyway, it was definitely a torn folder like icon and I tried numerous times to start up while depressing the option key and the only start up option that it gave me was OS X. This got me worried that something was wrong with OS 9. I don't have a laptop so I started up from the OS 9 CD and downloaded all the files that I could to my iPod. I love that thing! I ran the HD through disk first aid and it found several problems which it corrected. ( I am now thinking along the same lines as starfleetx and will probably get something a little more robust) I restarted and still a torn folder icon and no OS 9 option.

    This is when I ended up reinstalling all the software. I was a little aggravated but I have been thinking of partitioning my drive anyway and this just pushed me to go ahead with it.
  • Reply 4 of 8
    logan calelogan cale Posts: 1,281member
    Restart off X disk, run DFA. Restart off 9 disk. Select 9 system folder. Restart. Select X system folder. Restart.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    zigfreezigfree Posts: 5member
    I initially tried to start up off of the OS X disk but when the install sequence started, I turned off the Mac and restarted. I didn't realize that there was a utilities option in the finder. That's when I ended up starting off the OS 9 disk.

    Like I said, sometimes I know just enough to mess things up and usually have to look around here for answers.


  • Reply 6 of 8
    airslufairsluf Posts: 1,861member
  • Reply 7 of 8
    redericrederic Posts: 124member
    Happened on my iMac last week the day before my new iMac II arrived. I lost the lot.

    Taught me to backup to my external firewire HDD though. <img src="graemlins/embarrassed.gif" border="0" alt="[Embarrassed]" />
  • Reply 8 of 8
    I had this problem when switching from OS9 to X a few weeks ago and i though my mac was toast. I managed to re-start booting from the OS9 CD.

    Unsure of what to do next I opted to change the start-up disk to OSX from the CD. It worked and everything was fine...

    However, I think the problem occured becase I may have selected two start up disks before going back to OSX... I don't want to risk trying it again... But I hope this helps anyone if they have a similar problem...
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