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Ask Bob Cook Your Own Question
Bob Cook
Bob Cook, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 618
Experience:  I have sold Macintosh Computers since 1984. I started Sun Remarketing in 1983 and sold over 25,000.
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Im not very good in mac computer; however, we bought a used

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I'm not very good in mac computer; however, we bought a used mac G5, and it worked very nice for a while and all of a sudden the internet browser, Safari, went out. I tried to re-install it but it won't allow me to do it. The desktop continued to display. The computer has 4 hard drives, so i installed one of the 4 and then it just got stuck. Now when i turn it on, a little box with a ? in it pops up and it won't allow me to go anywhere. Do you have any idea what may be the problem?
Yes that ? is on top of a folder. It means that your Mac can't find system files to load the operating system.    One of your four drives has the correct OS on it and it needs to be in the right place to work. (The first drive bay). Or you could reinstall the OS from the system CD that came with the computer.

Either put the right drive back in place or Boot up from the CD by putting the CD in the drive, restarting the computer and immediately press and hold the C key on the keyboard. Then follow the instructions on the screen to update the system.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I had a co-worker from our IT department and who has also worked on macs came by and took a look at it. He did an elimination test by testing each drive separately but the ? still showed up on the screen. He thinks it's the motherboard that is not connecting to any of the drives. He also disconnected the drive with the CD in it hoping that was the issue, but the same messages showed up. In your response, how do i know which drive has the OS on it and how do i open the drive that has the CD in it?
I understand what your friend said and did. But I disagree that the problem is in the motherboard just because none of the hard drives booted. You mentioned that the computer stopped working after something was done with Safari. The only drive that had the OS on it may have scrambled files on it so that none of them could work.

One way to make sure your motherboard is good is to boot from the CD. If that works, your motherboard is good and your Mac can be restored by restoring the OS to a hard drive.

I have no idea how to find out which drive is which unless we can hook it up to a Mac and look at the files.
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Customer: replied 8 years ago.

Thank you very much.