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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > Platinum G3 won’t boot with anything but Mac OS X

Platinum G3 won’t boot with anything but Mac OS X
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Feb 13, 2013, 04:36 PM
 
So I’ve got a project I’m working on that requires some seriously old-school hardware and software, so I pulled my 1997 platinum Power Mac G3 out of the closet. Sure enough, it still works! Unfortunately, I need to boot it into Mac OS Classic so I can access the A/V personality card.

When I turn it on, the Mac boots into Jaguar and I discover that, once upon a time, I upgraded the hard drive to 40GB (wow!) and partitioned it four ways: Mac OS X v.10.2.8, Mac OS 9.2.2, Mac OS 8.5 (why not 8.6, I don’t know), and Mac OS 8.1. All four partitions seem to be functional, but no matter what I do, I can’t boot from any but the Jag partition.

I try inserting the 8.1 install CD that came with the computer; it says it won’t work on this computer. I try inserting a retail 9.2.1 CD; it boots fine, but I can’t use the Startup Disk control panel because my only ADB mouse is broken and there are apparently no USB drivers on the CD. I can use the Startup Disk system pref in Jaguar, but selecting any of the Classic partitions only gets me as far as the happy Mac before it reboots itself right back into 10.2.

Anyone have any clue?
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Feb 14, 2013, 02:40 AM
 
just hold option down upon boot, you may still be able to scroll the various OS partitions using the arrow keys
     
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Feb 14, 2013, 07:01 AM
 
Memory is failing for things this old, but I think that the old beige G3s would only boot from partitions in the first 8 GB of the HD.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Feb 14, 2013, 08:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by Dex13 View Post
just hold option down upon boot, you may still be able to scroll the various OS partitions using the arrow keys
Thanks, Dex. Unfortunately, that doesn’t work; holding option just boots it into some form of Classic (I can’t tell which one), as previously described. It’s probably a limitation of the minimal Old-World support in Mac OS X.

Originally Posted by P View Post
Memory is failing for things this old, but I think that the old beige G3s would only boot from partitions in the first 8 GB of the HD.
Thank you as well, P. That could be. I know that the entire Mac OS X partition has to be within the first 8GB, but I suppose it could be all of them. Can anyone confirm this?
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Feb 14, 2013, 01:49 PM
 
It rings a bell. Can't do any better than that I'm afraid.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Feb 14, 2013, 02:13 PM
 
     
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Feb 14, 2013, 05:15 PM
 
Welp, that cinches it. Thank you so much for the info!
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Feb 15, 2013, 12:07 PM
 
I wiped out the hard drive and created five partitions: 3.9GB for Mac OS X v.10.2.8, 2GB for Mac OS 9.2.2, 1GB for Mac OS 8.6, 1GB for Mac OS 8.1 (that‘s 7.9GB, right?), and the rest as storage for whatever. I’m still having the same problem.

Any other thoughts besides just wiping the whole hard drive and going with a single OS 9 partition?
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Feb 15, 2013, 12:33 PM
 
Do you really have the time to fool around with all this partitioning and multi-booting? It didn't sound like you were doing this for fun.
     
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Feb 15, 2013, 02:54 PM
 
In Disk Utility, check that Mac OS 9 Drivers are installed. If the disk lacks a Classic drivers partition, it cannot boot into any classic OS.

Select the hardware drive icon, then the Partition tab. The checkbox (greyed out) will show if the driver partition is present.

Your Classic system folder might not be blessed, but the standard answer requires a working mouse. On the OS 9 install CD, boot into Finder. Then drag the Finder app icon out of the HD's System folder to somewhere else. Then drag it back into the closed System folder. I think the System folder responds by acquiring a rainbow Apple icon.

You can also bless a classic system folder via OSX Terminal command, but I don't know it by heart.
     
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Feb 15, 2013, 03:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by BLAZE_MkIV View Post
Do you really have the time to fool around with all this partitioning and multi-booting? It didn't sound like you were doing this for fun.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
In Disk Utility, check that Mac OS 9 Drivers are installed. If the disk lacks a Classic drivers partition, it cannot boot into any classic OS. <snip>
True enough, Blaze, and thanks to r50 for all the suggestions. Thankfully, I finally got it up and running. I booted from the Mac OS 9 CD and launched the Startup Disk control panel, then selected the 9.2.2 partition. I guess it just needed to be in Classic, to stay in Classic. I guess I know what to do, next time! Thanks again to all!
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Feb 15, 2013, 04:52 PM
 
Doh! I had forgotten about blessing the system folder. Oh the pain.
     
   
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