Author Topic: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)  (Read 2447 times)

Offline zefrenchtoon

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System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« on: December 19, 2021, 04:56:11 AM »
Hi folks !

I did not know if I had to post this here or in "System Utilities & File Management" section so if you want to move it …  ;)

Recently I have bought a French Boxed MacOS X Server v1.2 to try to use it on my Mac Mini and/or on my Yikes.
Before trying, I checked CDs content and I have found something that seems interesting.

A "System Disk" a bit special because it allows the user to configure some Open Firmware's settings like:
- Boot Device
- Boot File
- Boot command
- Input/Output Devices
- If it has to stop boot at Open Firmware prompt or not

Here are two screenshots to show you these …

Maybe this could be useful on Custom Bootable CDs made for MacMini and others ?

What do you think about it ?
« Last Edit: December 19, 2021, 12:44:11 PM by zefrenchtoon »

Offline robespierre

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Re: System Disk "Special Edition"
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2021, 07:44:49 AM »
I seem to remember that these options were also available in the BootX (?) tools for launching NetBSD from the Mac OS?

Offline ivanshpak

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2022, 02:41:08 PM »
Hi folks !

I did not know if I had to post this here or in "System Utilities & File Management" section so if you want to move it   ;)

Recently I have bought a French Boxed MacOS X Server v1.2 to try to use it on my Mac Mini and/or on my Yikes.
Before trying, I checked CDs content and I have found something that seems interesting.

A "System Disk" a bit special because it allows the user to configure some Open Firmware's settings like:
- Boot Device
- Boot File
- Boot command
- Input/Output Devices
- If it has to stop boot at Open Firmware prompt or not

Here are two screenshots to show you these

Maybe this could be useful on Custom Bootable CDs made for MacMini and others ?

What do you think about it ?

Please share the archive this "Startup Disk", I will be very grateful!

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2022, 06:19:37 AM »
id also like to add it to my collection, because as it seems, i dont have a copy.

after a quick google search it turns out we should not need that for OS9... it seems to be for OS8... and you can also just use the startup disk controlpanel from OS 9.1 or higher to get the same feature (i.e. the boot manager screen) in OS 8... of course only as option when holding option. :)
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Offline darthnVader

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Re: System Disk "Special Edition"
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2022, 04:14:44 AM »
I seem to remember that these options were also available in the BootX (?) tools for launching NetBSD from the Mac OS?

The tool NetBSD refers to is called Boot Variables, it can be hard to find these days.

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2022, 05:00:11 AM »
that tool might be interesting when your computer does not support regular boot manager (imac 1st gen?)

maybe it is on the rhapsody CD? i shall have a look.
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Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2022, 08:10:03 AM »
Hi!
As I said in my first post, I have found it on MacOS X Server CD (aka Rhapsody )

I will share it if you want asap

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2022, 02:38:34 PM »
ah, i didnt get that, but as it seems i guessed right. :)
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Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2022, 06:25:14 AM »
here is a diskcopy 6.2 img containing the tool, its readme file and its INIT companion

have fun !!


 -afro-

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2022, 11:28:14 AM »
id also like to add it to my collection, because as it seems, i dont have a copy.

after a quick google search it turns out we should not need that for OS9... it seems to be for OS8... and you can also just use the startup disk controlpanel from OS 9.1 or higher to get the same feature (i.e. the boot manager screen) in OS 8... of course only as option when holding option. :)

No, this tool is way better than what's in OS 9 (Startup Disk): It allows you to set OF firmware configuration from within the OS. This is epic! The bigger icons are also more comfortable to click on, especially if you configured to move your mouse super fast.

This is literally the boot selector used in OS X, but with extra Open Firmware goodness, and when booting to OS X, you can even set boot arguments! Very convenient! You can also create OF configuration files from this, and save/load them, all from OS 9.

I love this! Just confirmed it working on Mac OS 9.2.2 on the 1.5GHz mini. This particular mini model has also some additional boot problems sometimes, not seen in the gen1 G4 minis, so having these OF features made even more accessible is extra welcome for this particular Mac.

Thanks for sharing this discovery with us, @zefrenchtoon! This really needs a home at the Garden. It is not common knowledge that Mac OS X Server / Rhapsody has such interesting Mac-OS-9-compatible tools.

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2022, 12:13:10 PM »
No, this tool is way better than what's in OS 9 (Startup Disk): It allows you to set OF firmware configuration from within the OS.

is that technically different from booting into OF? i mean do changes have an effect before you reboot?
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Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2022, 02:11:20 PM »
i mean do changes have an effect before you reboot?

I think so. At least, that's how it is even with the regular Startup Disk: if you click on a different volume/OS, even if you don't click on the "Restart" button, your choice has already been set and committed on NVRAM / PRAM. The system clock is also like that.

I'm not sure if someone pulls the power plug and you restart, the changes will have already been applied, but with normal Shut Down / Restart, it will for sure have been committed, without having to go to OF directly and change it manually.

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2022, 03:23:52 PM »
for PRAM it is clear. i meant for OF changes you might apply (i have no clue about OF and it sounds a bit dangerous to have an application at everyones hands which let you fuck it up^^)
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Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2022, 12:00:54 AM »
No, this tool is way better than what's in OS 9 (Startup Disk): It allows you to set OF firmware configuration from within the OS.

is that technically different from booting into OF? i mean do changes have an effect before you reboot?

Technically, I don't think so but with a GUI ... it is very nice when we are not an expert of OF commands.  ::)


Apart from that, I tried to use it on my 6100/66 to see the result and it crashes with a cryptic error message:
The application "System Disk" could not be opened because "NameRegistryLib" could not be found.

After some googling, it seems that they used a trick to check if there was a PCI bus or not on the mac as we can read on this article:
https://dev.os9.ca/qa/hw/hw01.html

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2022, 03:04:11 AM »
for PRAM it is clear. i meant for OF changes you might apply (i have no clue about OF and it sounds a bit dangerous to have an application at everyones hands which let you fuck it up^^)

It is pretty safe for the most part. Technically anyone can already "fuck it up" by holding Cmd+Option+O+F (or Ctrl+Z in the boot picker), so all the program does is bring in convenience and be a time saver. People have to go out of their way to find, grab and use this program, so there's no real risk like that.

Of course, it is a "Power User" feature, as the program itself says, as we see in the screenshots.

Open Firmware is not that scary, though! Check this out, if you haven't come across it yet: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/the-open-firmware-wiki.2225024/

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2022, 02:59:36 AM »
Incidentally, @zefrenchtoon, ever considered ripping and uploading your French Mac OS X Server (Rhapsody) disc to this Macintosh Garden page, for archival?

Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2022, 03:29:08 AM »
I have to check but I think that the CD is the same for french and english version.

Also, I have 2 different versions. One retail and One from a Macintosh Server G4 ...  I will check each of them asap

Offline ccmac

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #17 on: May 27, 2022, 07:07:24 AM »
I downloaded the System Disk Utilities image above but it seems to be corrupted. In particular, the System Disk Extension has no resource fork.

Would you please place files that you know are OK in a folder and stuff it and reupload. Thanks.

Also, regarding the NetBSD Boot Variables program mentioned above. Just do a google search for netbsd and bootvars

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #18 on: May 27, 2022, 09:54:18 AM »
I downloaded the System Disk Utilities image above but it seems to be corrupted. In particular, the System Disk Extension has no resource fork.

CP seemed fine on my end. Didn't try the Extension. But I did notice the icons seen in the screenshot above were missing from when I mounted the image file.

I wonder if it's because it's a DiskCopy 6 .img. Sometimes those have important or useful resource fork stuff, and so needs to be compressed with StuffIt or encoded with BinHex (.bin, .hqx) first.

@zefrenchtoon, if you'd be so kind, would you please reupload the files for us in a new .img file compressed as .sit? :) If you got time, of course.

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #19 on: May 27, 2022, 11:48:36 AM »
Open Firmware is not that scary, though!

i prefer to keep typing commands to a minimum. :)

it is an acceptable tool where there is no other, say like booting back to macos after you were in morphos or sth., otherwise i avoid it where i can.
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Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #20 on: May 27, 2022, 03:59:51 PM »
Open Firmware is not that scary, though!

i prefer to keep typing commands to a minimum. :)

it is an acceptable tool where there is no other, say like booting back to macos after you were in morphos or sth., otherwise i avoid it where i can.

I had to change the boot arguments on my 1.5GHz mini, else it would always boot into OS X, or always waste my time and effort making me "alt-boot" in the boot picker. Doing this was a lifesaver (and made booting into OS X more difficult, as I have to fix the boot args, but that's easy, literally just remove 1 letter, and I almost never need to boot to OS X anyway).

You can also easily disable netboot. Doing so will save you 1-3 minutes each time you alt-boot (boot-picker is now basically instantaneous).

But yeah, I agree with you, we want to keep it to a minimum. Like you said sometimes, it's "meant to be easy", and the easier the better. :)

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #21 on: May 27, 2022, 06:52:06 PM »
You can also easily disable netboot

now this sounds intriguing. could it maybe also be hacked into the ROM file?
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Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #22 on: May 28, 2022, 12:08:02 AM »
You can also easily disable netboot
now this sounds intriguing. could it maybe also be hacked into the ROM file?

I think probably, but I also think there's no need to go that far.

It is on the Open Firmware wiki page I linked above. The command is:
Code: [Select]
setenv skip-netboot? true
To set it back:
Code: [Select]
setenv skip-netboot? false
To view the wiki adequately on OS 9, we can use FrogFind, like this.

Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #23 on: May 30, 2022, 11:40:40 AM »
I downloaded the System Disk Utilities image above but it seems to be corrupted. In particular, the System Disk Extension has no resource fork.

Would you please place files that you know are OK in a folder and stuff it and reupload. Thanks.

Also, regarding the NetBSD Boot Variables program mentioned above. Just do a google search for netbsd and bootvars

As asked, here is a stuffed version of the img using DropStuff 5.5

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #24 on: May 31, 2022, 02:11:31 AM »
I downloaded the System Disk Utilities image above but it seems to be corrupted. In particular, the System Disk Extension has no resource fork.

Would you please place files that you know are OK in a folder and stuff it and reupload. Thanks.

Also, regarding the NetBSD Boot Variables program mentioned above. Just do a google search for netbsd and bootvars

As asked, here is a stuffed version of the img using DropStuff 5.5

Thanks, but it is still showing up like this when I mount the .img:



As opposed to this:



Looks like the problem happened at some point before creating the image itself. Maybe the files had been moved with something that doesn't respect resource forks? (I.e. non-HFS systems, or protocols like FTP.)

Offline zefrenchtoon

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #25 on: May 31, 2022, 02:31:13 AM »
it did the same on my 6100 on which I created the img then when I copy one of the items off the img to the desktop, the icons appeared.  :o
That's why I think all forks are there. I think that the problem is principaly that the img's Desktop DB is not up-to-date.

can you try and tell me please ?

Offline Jubadub

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #26 on: May 31, 2022, 05:12:11 AM »
I think that the problem is principaly that the img's Desktop DB is not up-to-date.

can you try and tell me please ?

Oh, good thinking. Looks like you are right, as far as I can tell. In fact, this is also true for the original .img file you uploaded, the checksum (both forks) is identical between the two uploads, and the resources are also there with ResEdit (if I understood ResEdit right).

I assume this probably confused @ccmac, too.

Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #27 on: May 31, 2022, 12:27:29 PM »
the icon from the text form file should be available from the boot drives desktop (casue its from a BNDL), no?

the extension might have a -16455 type of icon only.

however, i have seen similar behaviour with some images, too, from system 7 to mavericks.
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Offline IIO

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Re: System Disk (Startup Disk "Special Edition" ?)
« Reply #28 on: May 31, 2022, 12:28:12 PM »
try applying "update desktop" to the mounted image from filebuddy and see what happens.
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