Summary: When Mac shows folder with a question mark, you can follow this guide to fix this issue. Without losing important files, you can fix the question mark folder and boot up your Mac again. Occasionally, you'll see certain error screens when starting up your Mac. That flashing folder with a question mark on Mac is one of those Mac boot errors. It just appears, with no warning or pop-up in advance.
You can't ignore and go past the question folder icon.
How to Fix Mac Folder with Question Mark at Startup?
Many users hope to fix this issue by a restart. However, it won't work in most cases. The folder with a question mark icon means Mac can't find the hard drive or the system folder.
It could be caused by software or hardware errors. You may see the blinking file folder at startup on your Mac in these situations. It could happen if you have recently boot from an external system drive. What's more, you would see the icon if you install both Windows and Mac operating systems on your Mac machine. In these cases, you see the flashing folder with question mark simply because of wrong setups. That's to say, your Mac is confused when selecting the startup volume.
You could have replaced the Mac internal hard drive recently for better performance. If you're sure that you have a macOS on the new drive, then, the flashing folder might result from faulty connections. During the replacement, the SATA connection could get loose or damaged. So, your Mac has no startup disk to select if the Macintosh HD is not mounted.
The flashing folder shows after a recent macOS software update. Sometimes, this Mac has boot problems after or during the macOS update. The system files or the macOS directory could be corrupted. As a result, your Mac has trouble loading the operating system. The Mac shows the question mark folder with clicking or beeping noise.
In some cases, your Mac won't boot past the error screen due to hard drive corruption. Or what's worse, the Mac hard drive is severely damaged or even dead. There could be some other situations.Have you ever seen a file question mark on the screen?
Well, this is a common problem with all Macs, not just MacBook Pro. This flashing question mark is a sign of trouble; it means that some data on your Mac is corrupted.
Keep reading to find out all the best solutions, as per the official Apple support site. That was really easy, right? In this case, you have to repair your startup disk. First, you need to back up your data. Have you backed up your data recently? Then follow these steps:. Now you can proceed with reinstalling its system. This is how you save your personal data on MacBook Pro and reinstall the system. After you finish all of the steps successfully, the file question mark error should be resolved.
In case you had any trouble, contact an authorized service provider for Apple products and ask them for help. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how you resolve the problem in question. Then again, you might run into trouble while trying to fix this on your own. Share your thoughts and experiences with us in the comments section below.Apple launched refreshed Macbook Pro models with 8 th and 9 th generation Intel Processors in May They said that these were the finest and fastest Macbook Pro Models.
They also introduced and updated entry-level Macbook Pro machines with the intel processor, a touch bar, Touch ID, T2 security Chips with standard 13 and inch sizes. These machines have no external changes but with the same designs.
Keyboard in MacBook Pro has an upgraded butterfly mechanism made with the latest materials. It solved the key failures which were a prominent problem in the old MacBook Pro models. They also declared that they give 40 percent faster performance than a previous generation 6 core MacBook Pro. MacBook Pro is the fastest, finest and best machine in the market. But some times some issues can occur. One of them is the question mark? If you are facing trouble while starting up your MacBook Pro with a question mark?
For this issue, you will have to reselect your startup disk in System Preferences. Follow these steps:. Or any of these 5 methods can solve your issue. Disconnect all the devices like printers, external hard drives and disconnect all the cables including Ethernet. Finally, restart your MacBook pro. After restarting immediately press and hold the shift key, with this your mac will start in safe mood.
If mac works fine, then restart it to check if the issue is solved or not. Normally, in various cases, if works properly.
Turn the system again. Immediately press and hold the P and R command options. Restart the system and press and hold the C key, this will start your system from the installation disk. Choose Disk Utility from the Utility Menu. Try a disk repair, after the completion of disk repair, restart your MacBook pro without pressing or holding any key from the keyboard. Remove the RAM from the slot.
Install the original Apple RAM if you have. I hope at least any of the above-mentioned methods would have worked for you solving your issue of question mark? I have tried to cover and elaborate on all the possible ways to solve the issue of question mark in Macbook Pro. I think that I have tried my best to resolve this issue. We are always ready to help our visitors. Your email address will not be published.
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Table of Contents. Alan Mark. Related Articles.MacBook: How to find the serial number. To start the conversation again, simply ask a new question. Posted on Nov 15, PM.
Repair Mac Flashing Question Mark Folder Error. (Mac Data Recovery Included)
Posted on Apr 9, AM. I have accidentally deleted all the contents on my iMac latewith no CD Drive. The folder with the question mark has come up, and I have tried to put it in Recovery mode, Target Mode, and even had my hard drive attach to see if it could recognize the external hard drive.
The folder is still coming up and flashing. Not sure what to do. Any suggestions? Nov 29, AM. Jul 13, PM in response to frederic In response to frederic Jul 13, PM.
I just got at macbook pro mid from a friend. Going to use it in addition to my mac mini on recordings music in church. I was following disk utility - erase to start fresh.
Now I only get the question mark. I get it - I erased to much. But how can I get the macbook to start up again. Jan 8, AM. I had this same question mark folder flashing problem. I would hear the disk every time I turned my Macbook off and back on. I tried that about 8 times, and had the flashing question mark folder every time. It worked, and I have had no issues since.
I figured the disk just got jammed up or something. May 10, AM. Jan 9, PM in response to hands4 In response to hands4.Summary: This blog offers one of the best solutions for resolving a flashing question mark? And while you deal with this problem, you may face data loss situation due to corruption or inaccessible media.
So, we also cover along data recovery solution for Mac hard drives. Free download to know more. When I turned on my MacBook Pro, a flashing folder with a question mark came on the screen. That stayed there for a few seconds, but the Mac booted later on. Is there an issue with my MacBook Pro? Any suggestions…. Yesterday, after I turned on my MacBook Air, it displayed a flashing folder with a question mark.
Any clues on how to fix this? And while you deal with this problem, you may come across the possibilities of data loss due to corruption or inaccessible media. Flashing folder with a question mark? This can happen in the following situations:. Case 1: When MacBook displays the error for a few seconds but boots.
Case 2: When MacBook displays the error but does not boot. Try repairing it with First Aid, as follow:. Step 4 : Exit Disk Utility once the repair process is over. Step 1: Back up the MacBook data [critical step]. This is critically important because if you reinstall the OS without first backing up the data, it will result in data loss due to overwriting. Step I.
Step III. Step IV. Launch the tool, and from the main interface, select Recover Data. Step V. Select the type of data and the location of the flashing question mark drive. Step VI. Click Scan after you turn on the Deep Scan feature for rigorous searching. Step VII. Click Recoverand on the dialog box, specify the save location and click Save. For quick walkthrough on how to use the software for MacBook data backup, see the following video:.
Step 2: macOS Reinstallation. After the data stored on the HD — having flashing question mark folder problem — is backed up, proceed with reinstalling macOS, as follows:. Note : When Disk Utility does not show the Startup Disk or cannot repair it, then the storage drive has hardware problems. Contact a Mac repair service provider in this scenario. The article elaborated various methods to repair flashing question mark folder screen on Mac.
The first case occurs when your Mac shows a flashing folder with a question mark for a few seconds. In this case, you reselect the Startup Disk from system preferences.
The second case happens when your Mac is stuck in the flashing folder with a question mark without booting. In this case, you need to enter the macOS recovery mode and reselect the Startup Disk.The flashing question mark is your Mac's way of telling you that it's having trouble finding a bootable operating system.
Normally, your Mac will start the boot process fast enough that you'll never notice the flashing question mark on the display. But sometimes you may find your Mac displaying the question mark icon, either for a short time before finally finishing the startup process or it may appear stuck on the question mark, waiting for your help.
While the question mark is flashing, your Mac is checking all available disks for an operating system it can use. If it finds one, your Mac will finish booting. From the information in your question, it sounds like your Mac does eventually find a disk it can use as the startup drive and finishes the boot process. You can shorten, well, actually eliminate, the search process by selecting a startup disk in System Preferences. A list of drives that are currently connected to your Mac and have OS X, macOS, or another bootable operating system installed on them will be displayed.
Click on the padlock icon in the bottom left corner, then provide your administrator's password. From the list of available drives, select the one you wish to use as your Startup Disk. If the next time you start up your Mac the flashing question mark doesn't go away, and your Mac doesn't finish booting, you may have a more serious problem than a difficult-to-find operating system.
Chances are your selected startup drive is having issues, possibly disk errors that may be preventing the necessary startup data from properly loading. But before you try the Safe Boot option, go back and check the Startup Disk you selected in the previous step. Make sure it's the same one that your Mac is actually using once it finally boots up. Disk Utility displays the Mount Point of every volume attached to your Mac.
The forward slash is used to indicate the root or starting point of the Mac's hierarchical file system. The startup drive is always the root or start of the file system in the Mac OS. In the Disk Utility Sidebar, select a volumeand then check the Mount Point listed in the volume information area in the bottom center of the window. If you see the forward slash symbol, that volume is being used as the startup drive.
Continue selecting volumes in the Disk Utility sidebar until you find the startup volume. Now that you know which volume is being used as the startup disk, you can return to the Startup Disk preference pane and set the correct volume as the startup disk. Safe Boot is a special startup method that forces your Mac to load only the minimum information it needs to run.
Safe Boot also checks the startup drive for disk issues and attempts to repair any problems it encounters. Give Safe Boot a try. Once your Mac has booted using Safe Boot, go ahead and restart your Mac to see if the original question mark issue has been resolved.
It contains helpful guides to getting your Mac up and running. If you're still having startup issues, try starting from another device. Remember, Time Machine doesn't produce backups you can boot from. If you can start your Mac up from a different drive, you may need to repair or replace your original startup drive.
There are a number of apps that can repair minor disk problems, including Disk Utility's First Aid feature and Drive Genius. You can also use another special startup mode called Single User Mode to perform disk repair on the startup drive.Home What's new Latest activity Authors.
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If I select disk0, all the buttons are grayed out Next, I reboot and get back to the OS X Utilities window and select Restore, when I get to where I am supposed to select a startup disk, there are no options shown I have been searching through Apple Support but am not getting past this. Is there a way to create a bootable external hard drive that I can use to boot the mac and attempt to retrieve her data from the hard drive? Any suggestions on how to boot this mac up and is there any hope for retrieving data?
Thanks for any suggestions or guidance. Worked all over UK. I'm really sorry you're having this problem. When you see a flashing question mark on your Mac's screen at startup, it nearly always means your Mac can't find its system software. You have already done good things to get it sorted, but give the linked article below a careful read. It's quite long and detailed.