<b>MacTools Pro fixes &quot;blinking question mark&quot; startup bug: a follow-up

MacTools Pro fixes &quot;blinking question mark&quot; startup bug: a follow-up

The report last time that MacTools Pro may be able to repair at least some disks that fall to the blinking question mark startup bug in Mac OS 8 - even when other utilities (such as Norton Utilities) fail - stimulated a good deal of reader response.

Jason Cowart writes that he was not surprised to learn about MacTools Pro's success: "In the past six months we've had three machines go down with different problems that Norton was unable to repair and that MacTools Pro was."

Damion Michaels echoed similar sentiment: "I wholeheartedly confirm that MacTools Pro has consistently repaired problems that neither Apple's disk utilities and Norton Utilities could repair."

Brian Hartmann specifically confirmed the success of MacTools in fixing the blinking question mark problem on his Power Mac 6500 running Mac OS 8. [Note: this is not a cure of the cause of the problem; just a way of recovering the disk after the problem has occurred.]

However, as has been noted previously, you may have problems getting MacTools to run on Mac OS 8. Dave Camp (author of the DiskFix part of MacTools Pro) writes: "Versions of MacTools Pro beyond 4.0.4 do not run under Mac OS 8. That's because it was thought that 8.0 would be Copland, which would have a different file system. But, versions before 4.0.4 should work just fine. I use version 4.0.3 on my PowerCenter Pro 180." Matt Riley adds: "The only changes to the product between 4.0.2 and 4.0.4 were some minor interface tweaks and system emergency disk updates."

As you may know, Symantec (the vendor for Norton Utilities) now owns MacTools. It stopped distributing it last year. Perhaps it is time to request that Symantec either incorporate some of the MacTools technology in a new update to Norton Utilities or sell the rights to MacTools so that some other vendor can market it (Dave Camp affirmed that he would be happy to work on making it Mac OS 8 compatible).

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