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Old 05-07-2017, 05:43 PM
Loopy C Loopy C is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2005
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Mavericks 'Invalid' Start-Up Problem

So, I started with a raw drive connected via a 'Voyager 2' Firewire dock.

I cloned my Mac Pro internal 10.8.5 system, then booted off of the Firewire clone and performed an upgrade to 10.9.5. I then ran that 'test system, booted from same Voyager device for over a week while I tweaked and tested for compatibility.

After a week of start/re-starts, and being satisfied this would be my new system...I cloned this clone to a brand new partitioned drive which would contain this new 10.9.5 copy, and then another partition with original 10.8.5 (I am stuck with 1 TB partitions because of original system drive size and not wanting to start over 'clean due to several thousand audio plug-ins and having to re-install their individual licensing systems which cloning alleviates).

I installed this new drive into my computer...and everything seemed fine, running either 10.9.5 or 10.8.5 via 'Start Up' disk preference worked as expected.

Fast forward a few weeks later...and one night upon shutting down 10.9.5 it instead restarted? And when it re-started it displayed the 'Null' sign (prohibitory sign)'? What changed? (details to follow)

Through trial and error, and after checking/repairing drive via the 10.8.5 partition which it would eventually default back to, I finally did a 'Hail Mary' and attempted to start up using command 'Recovery Mode'...the thing is this system was originally created in 2009 and upgraded to 10.6.8, to 10.8.5, and now to 10.9.5)...so there is NO 'Recovery' partition! But now 10.9.5 system booted fine!!! Just like a normal boot???

So...Command -R seemed to bypass whatever this problem is, so instead of the invalid sign, holding Command-R caused system to boot up normally (so no 'Recovery menu, just normal system start-up).

Now one thing I had done...original 2009 disk name was 'Mac Pro 1', then when I cloned I named it 'Mac Pro 1 (10.9.5), and again it been cloned/upgraded while booted from Voyager/Firewire with this name, but it seemed fine once installed internally (via SATA bus of Mac Pro 2009), BUT, while upgrading my Native Instruments this new name (the added (10.9.5) caused Native Instruments installs (Reaktor, Kontakt, etc) to fail as you can't change disk name from original install so I reverted back to 'Mac Pro 1' only (no '(10.9.5)) to fix their hard-wired directory problems tied to original name of disk used by original NI installers).

Is this change of disk name from clone name used during system upgrade a problem for booter/launchd?

The problem first started when I had the machine 'Re-Start instead of 'Shut Down' (i.e. I chose 'Shut Down from menu but it instead initiated a 'Restart', and and that's first time it didn't find valid system (Null Sign)... and then a 'Safe Start' reverted it back to 10.8.5 system partition which was/is still working fine. The disk rename probably happened in that period before this last shutdown...and up until then I had probably shut down several times from internal 10.9.5 partition without incident.

Disk repair (ran either from 10.8.5 system or via Command-S start-up 'sbin/fsck -fy' finds no problems...and as I said command-R seems to bypass problem even though there is no recovery partition installed.

Could the renaming of the disk cause this? This is a music studio machine so I have only shut it down twice since problem started, and even though both times the command-R seemed to allow it it to boot back into 10.9.5 normally, I am remiss to shut down again until I have a better understanding why a command that shouldn't do anything (Command-R) given no recovery partition is installed is allowing it to boot normally and system/disk is fine otherwise (I have been working from it for over a month since problem happened and only 'sleeping' it).

So in summary...I am seeking insight as to problem and why command-R is seemingly solving problem? before I dedicate myself to shutting down again and risk losing my now current install of 10.9.5 (which would disrupt studio work). Any comments/opinions as to technical reasons for my problem/symptoms welcome!

Thanks in advance '-)

Last edited by Loopy C; 05-07-2017 at 05:54 PM.
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