EMac (probably pre2004) won't start up. Just get white screen with Apple showing after the start up chord. Have discs.
You have a hung operating system - perhaps a file is mis-located or corrupted. Insert Disk 1 of your eMac install set, then hold down the power button until the computer turns off. Press it again to restart, then immediately press and hold the "C" key. This should force the computer to start from the install disk. Once you get the installer screen, look in the menus for "Disk Utility" and select that. In the Disk Utility screen, click on the Hard Disk icon in the left pane, then click the "Repair Disk" button. Once you see the process has started, you can go do something else - this takes a while. When this is done, click "Repair Permissions" and wait for that to finish. If all goes well, Disk Utility will find and untangle a file directory problem and your system will work again.
If you do not have an install CD, you could try fixing things in "single-user" mode. On start-up, hold down the Command (Apple) and "S" keys until the screen turns black and starts scrolling a lot of white text. When the system finishes start-up (you will see the main account user name followed by a flashing cursor mark), type (without quotes) "fsck -f", then <enter>. If the main account requires a log-in password, you will be asked to provide that. The "fsck" command starts a Unix routine similar to Disk Utility. You may have to repeat the fsck to ensure repairs are complete. (Note to gutter-minds: fsck is not an obscenity, it's an acronym for "File System ChecK".) When you are done with fsck, type "reboot" to restart the computer normally.
If the files system repair fails, or an important file is hopelessly corrupted and you don't like trying to fix it in Single-User command-line mode, the simplest fix is to reinstall the OS using the CDs. Your account information may be lost. On the other hand, if you are willing to hack Unix, you may be able to find the system log files in Single-User mode and trace down the error that prevents normal startup. If it is a corrupted preference file, you can simply delete it and try starting again.
May 28, 2012 |