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 iBook-User "Community eMail Bag" 

Welcome to our New Column the "iBook-User eMail Bag" every Friday we will include any email's we get during the week and share our readers experiences with their Blueberry and Tangerine iBook's for the iBook-User Community. If you have some info you'd like to share with others, Drop us a line at staff@ibook-user.com.

* Just let us know if you don't want your email address or full name posted

* Reader's Respond to iBook Crash

We received quite a few eMail's after our report of our iBook Crashing and many were very good. Next week we will post a more in-depth report on what happened. So stay tuned !

iBook Screen Defect - Vertical/Horizontal Static

Just got a tangerine ibook with OS 9 installed. Loved it right out of the box. Loaded Microsoft office on and was about ready to set my internet connection when on start up I experienced a large amount of vertical/horizontal static. The initial Mac OS icon was very blurry until the very end of the startup when the resolution kicked in to normal. The big problem came up then. The right two inches and bottom two inches of my desktop are off the screen. It's like I'm watching the upper left 70% of a 17 inch monitor on my ibook. Maczones and Apple were of no help as they told me to do everything I tried (monitor control panel, pram zap, boot off system CD, etc.) Now I'm on the road with my only e-mail access through family computers and my machine is in the shop. I'm a little ticked I had to drive across town and leave a $50 fee to have my brand new $1500 computer that had been booted 6 times looked at. Hopefully this has a quick, happy, and fully under warranty ending.

Jim Roberts

* Jim, this is the first report I have heard of this kind of problem on any computer, it's should be under warranty, covered for the 1st 90 days by Apple, they usually have it sent directly back to them, Good Luck.

"?" Mark on Folder, Not a Folder

It's not a folder; it's a floppy--it means where's the valid startup disk.

Anthony Bentley

* Well I gotta say it sure looks like a folder to me. Really, what would a Floppy icon be doing on an iBook that has NO floppy drive built in ? On older Macs like my Performa that have a floppy drive they will show one.

Burning and Using CD-RW Drive/CD-RW as a Boot Disk

Sorry about your problem -- exact same thing happened to me a little while back. Stupid thing was, it was just after I bought a USB CDRW (for $200 from Buy.com), but I hadn't done any backups yet.

My only recourse was to find a friend with a CDR and burn a CD with both the iBook system folder *and* Norton -- installed on the CD. So it starts up into regular OS 8.6, then run Norton, then run Tech Tool Pro, then run Apple disk doctor -- finally I can at least get my files visible and use one of the department's servers to backup over ethernet, but I still have to reformat the drive because none of the programs can really fix the problem (bad HFS partition -- apparently that HFS partition/wrapper is necessary for the disk to be bootable), so I still have to boot off CD and then reformat. I had to burn several CDs because I kept forgetting to do this or that.

For instance, if you get access to a CD burner, you need to make a writable disk image, copy over the system folder (of course, it has to be the system folder from the iBook CD, with the iBook ROM), and install Norton on the image first, before burning it. That is very important. And don't forget to make the disc bootable. I also tried to install Toast 4.0 onto the disc, because that way in the future I can get access to the USB CDRW when booting from CD (you must have the Toast drivers on the boot disc to access it), but that failed because the Toast installer didn't install the USB drivers onto the fake, pre-burn partition because my friend's computer doesn't have USB, and the installer was trying to be smart!

When initializing the disk, I made two partitions this time, so hopefully if one goes belly up, at least the other will be bootable.

I guess this is the price we pay for being on the cutting edge.(*How True)

Ian Fasel

* Ian thanks for the Great eMail, the Toast idea is great! and the Writable Disk Image is even Better !!! After my iBook crashed I brought it over to my friend's house and did what you did but it could not find the files, though Norton claimed to fix some b-tree directory's ect.
While I was making the disk I thought It would be nice if I could add some Printer drivers so I could save the reports to disk.

I added Ethernet to my PowerMac 6500

Here is something you may want to try ... start up from the restore CD, don't initialize the hard drive, then just shut down (not force restart) then wait about a half-an-hour and try starting up normally again... It may work. It will sometimes it did for my PowerMac 6500.

Good luck!

P.S. I would suggest the ethernet card for your old Performa then you will have access to your zip, not to mention any other SCSI devices, your floppy drive, and another hardrive for back up... I added ethernet to my 6500 and use it to back up stuff from my iBook, it works great.

Randie Berg

* I already had tried a force reset a number of times the first day I discovered the crash(which was the day after Christmas. Question did you add the ethernet card in the comm (modem slot?)

No Valid HD on Re-Start

Hello. I experienced the same thing that you described. I had the ibook sleeping. Upon awakening, it crashed. There was no valid HD present upon restart. I had to format and lost everything. However, Disk Warrior from Alsoft appears to be the best possibility to recover from this kind of crash in the future. I have not (as of yet ) experienced another crash of this type, but I feel confident that DW will be the utility to get me through. I didn't pay attention w/ 8.6, but on OS 9, when booting from the cd, AppleTalk is on. This allowed me to run DW (for maintenance) when booted from the cd and connected via ethernet to my iMac. It doesn't help your situation much, but I hope it provides food for thought. Most sincerely,


* John that's what Happened to me and that's what I had to do too... I tried Norton Utilities, tech Tool Pro and Disk Warrior none helped my situation. However I believe I have a defective Hard Drive.
I will post a report next week on How I tried to repair my iBook and what happened .

Files Intact...

The same thing happened to a client's iBook. I reinstalled the System software, but her files were intact. I believe that the option was install in-place. Good luck.


* I had to reinstall everything and my files were lost !

Reset Power Manager...

Try to reset the Power Manager.

To do this:

1. Make sure iBook is off
2. Press and hold the reset button for 5 seconds
3. Wait 5 more seconds
4. Perform a normal startup.

Let me know how you make out!


* In this didn't work in my case, but it may in other situations. Thanks Jeff.

Boot From Install...

Have you tried to boot from the install (not the restore) CDROM and then use disk first aid?

Hal Eden

* Yes, I tried that then I called Apple and they had me repeat the process... didn't Work.

Boot Disk...

Hi there,

I read somewhere (can't remember where exactly) recently that you've got boot up and set your iBook's HD as your default boot disk in the Startup Disk control panel.

Apparently, the reason the ?-folder appears is because you didn't set the default HD and it's looking for a disk on the network to Net-boot (if you know what I meant).

Hope this solves your problems.


Jon 8-)


Cybersoft Inc. | OgilvyInteractive

* I checked it out, and it was selected, I do believe that it comes that way from Apple , thanks .

Ethernet Comm Slot Card...

Sorry to hear about your problems. If you are looking for an ethernet card, let me know. I have a comm slot and comm slot II. I would be glad to get rid of them for $30.00 including shipping. Let me know if you are interested.

If you do look at the USB CD-RW, check out the Sony. We just got one here at work and it works great - on both the Mac and PC. I am very happy with it.

Good luck


* I think I'll take you up on that Peter, It will solve my back-up problems on the cheap !


Thanks to all for writing, Keep sending those email's in !


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