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Macintosh System Software FAQ by Elliotte Rusty Harold

General informations about this F.A.Q.

Subject: Macintosh system software frequently asked questions (FAQ)
From: (Elliotte Rusty Harold)
Date: 5 Aug 1997 09:35:56 GMT
Newsgroups: comp.sys.mac.system, comp.answers, news.answers
Summary: This document answers a number of the most frequently asked questions about Macintoshes on Usenet. To avoid wasting bandwidth and as a matter of politeness please familiarize yourself with this document BEFORE posting.

Archive-name: macintosh/system-faq
Version: 2.4.1
Last-modified: June 23, 1996 - with some notes by Oliver in February 2005 (marked)
Maintainer: (Elliotte Rusty Harold)

Frequently Asked Questions about Macintosh System Software

comp.sys.mac.faq, part 2: comp.sys.mac.system
Copyright 1993-1996 by Elliotte Harold
Please see section 5.8 of the general FAQ if you wish to
redistribute, revise or republish this document in any way.
Archive-name: macintosh/system-faq
Version: 2.4.1
Last-modified: June 23, 1996
Address comments to

What's new in version 2.4.1:

Some minor changes to the setext formatting
to facilitate automatic conversion to HTML.

2.5) Where can I get non-U.S. system software and scripts?
This question has been updated to reflect the release of
several new language kits and applications.

Note by Oliver in Feb. 2005:
2.3) Where can I get System 7.5?
This question has been updated to reflect the release of the free
download version of System 7 and 7.5. - I added the link to
FTP link to download System 7 and 7.5 update.

Table of Contents

I. Memory
1. Why is my system using so much memory?
2. What is MODE32? the 32-bit enabler? Do I need them?
3. How much memory should I allot to my cache?
II. System Software
1. Why does Apple charge for system software?
2. What does System 7.5 give me for my $35/$50/$99 that System 7.1 doesn't?
3. Where can I get System 7.5?
4. How can I use System 6 on a System 7 only Mac?
5. Non-US scripts and systems
6. What is System 7 Tuneup? System Update 3.0? etc.? Do I need them?
7. Why do my DA's disappear when I turn on MultiFinder?
8. Do I need System 7.0.1?
9. Can I get System 7.0.1, 7.1 or 7.5 on 800K disks?
10. Is there a version of UNIX for the Mac?
III. Hard Disk and File System Problems
1. Help! My folder disappeared!
2. Why can't I throw this folder away?
3. Why can't I share my removable drive?
4. Why can't I eject this SyQuest cartridge? CD-ROM? etc.
5. Why can't I rename my hard disk?
6. How do I change my hard disk icon?
IV. Fonts
1. How do I convert between Windows fonts and Mac fonts?
TrueType and PostScript?
2. What font will my screen/printer use when different types
are installed?
3. Where should I put my fonts?
V. Miscellaneous:
1. What does System Error XXX mean?
2. What is a Type Y error?
3. What is A/ROSE?
4. Easy Access: One Answer, Many Questions
5. How can I keep multiple system folders on one hard disk?
6. How do I access the programmer's key?


This is the SECOND part of this FAQ. The first part is also
posted at at under the subject heading "Introductory
Macintosh frequently asked questions (FAQ)" and includes a complete
table of contents for the entire document as well as information on
where to post, ftp, file decompression, trouble-shooting, preventive
maintenance and conditions for reproduction, posting and use of this
document outside of Usenet. The third, fourth, fifth and sixth parts
are posted every two weeks in comp.sys.mac.misc, comp.sys.mac.apps,
comp.sys.mac.wanted and comp.sys.mac.hardware respectively. Please
familiarize yourself with all six sections of this document before
posting. All pieces are available for anonymous ftp from


Except for the introductory FAQ which appears in multiple
newsgroups and is stored as general-faq, the name of each
file has the format of the last part of the group name followed
by "-faq", e.g the FAQ for comp.sys.mac.system is stored as
system-faq. You can also have these files mailed to you
by sending an email message to with
the line:

send pub/usenet/news.answers/macintosh/name

in the body text where "name" is the name of the file you want as
specified above (e.g. general-faq). You can also send this server
a message with the subject "help" for more detailed instructions.
For access via the World Wide Web use


MEMORY (1.0)


Under system versions earlier than 7.0 or under System 7.x
without 32-bit addressing turned on the Mac cannot access more than
eight megabytes of real memory. If you have more physical RAM
installed, the Mac knows it's present but can't do anything with it.
When About this Macintosh (About the Finder in System 6) is selected
from the Apple menu, the system reports all the memory it can't use
as part of the system memory allocation.

To use the memory you need to install System 7 and turn on
32-bit addressing in the Memory control panel. If you have a Mac
with dirty ROMs (a II, IIx, SE/30, or IIcx) you also need MODE32.
MODE32 is free from the mythical friendly neighborhood dealer or


The original Mac II also needs the FDHD ROM upgrade to use 4 megabyte
or larger SIMMs in Bank A. Without it SIMMs larger than one megabyte
can only be put in the second bank of memory on a Mac II. If you're
staying with System 6, Maxima from Connectix ($45 street) allows you
to use up to fourteen megabytes of real memory and can allocate
anything beyond that to a RAM disk.

If you have an LC or an LC II with four megabytes of RAM
soldered to the motherboard, you still need to add two four-megabyte
SIMM's to reach the ten megabyte maximum imposed by the LC ROM.
This means you'll always have two unused megabytes which About this
Macintosh and About the Finder report as part of the system memory
allocation. Unfortunately there is no current means of accessing
this extra memory.

If you've turned on 32-bit addressing or if you have eight
megabytes or less of RAM, check your disk cache (RAM cache in
System 6) in the Memory Control Panel (General Control Panel in
System 6) to make sure it isn't set exceptionally high. All
memory allotted to the cache comes out of the System's
memory allocation.

Finally if you recently upgraded to System 7.1 by updating your
system software rather than by doing a clean reinstall, (See question
4.6 in the general FAQ) you should move all fonts out of your system
file as these can take up an extraordinary amount of memory.


MODE32 and the 32-bit enabler are system extensions that allow
Mac II's, IIx's, IIcx's, and SE/30's to access more than eight
megabytes of real memory under System 7. The 32-bit enabler is buggy
and doesn't work at all with System 7.0 or 7.5. If you have more
than eight megabytes of real memory in an SE/30, II, IIcx, or IIx,
(or eight megabytes and RAM Doubler) you need MODE32. See



One of the Memory Control Panel (or General Control Panel in
System 6) settings is the mysterious cache, Disk Cache in System 7,
RAM cache in System 6. This is memory the system sets aside to hold
frequently accessed data from the disk. The cache acts like a 7-11
for your hard disk. It's quicker to get a quart of milk at the 7-11,
but it costs more so you don't do all your shopping there. And the
7-11 doesn't have everything you want so sometimes you need to go
to the A&P (your hard disk) instead.

Unfortunately the caches in pre-7.5 system software really aren't
all that fast. In these systems the RAM cache would more appropriately
be called the RAM thief. Its effect on performance seems to be much
like the canals of Mars. You have to want to see it before you can.
The caching algorithm has allegedly been improved in System 7.5 but
I haven't seen any hard evidence of that yet.

However there are a few applications and extensions such as
Dayna DOSMounter that actually make use of the cache and will run
much faster when it's turned on than when it's off. Thus I recommend
setting your cache to 64K, turning it on, and forgetting about it. I
hope that in 1995 most Macintoshes have enough RAM that they don't
need to worry about losing 64K.

If, however, your Mac is a IIsi running a color monitor from
the internal video, then you may possibly speed up your Mac with an
appropriate cache setting. The IIsi and the IIci use system RAM to
store the video image on your screen. (Other Macs with internal
video have video RAM separate from the main system RAM so this trick
doesn't apply to them.) The internal video competes with the System
for use of this RAM; and that competition slows down your Mac, just
like two children fighting in the back seat of your car adds an hour
to the time it takes to get to the beach. To stop the fighting a
smart parent will put one child in the front seat and one in the back.
A smart Mac owner will put the internal video in the front seat and
the system in the back seat. To push the system out of the front seat
set a IIsi's cache to between 384K and 768K which will take up all
the space in the front seat not occupied by the internal video and
force the system to sit in the back. The exact value depends on the
type of monitor you have installed. Experiment to see what works
for you. Unfortunately this trick doesn't work when virtual memory
is turned on, but if you're using virtual memory you're probably more
concerned about saving memory than gaining speed anyway. There's
also a bug in the System 6 cache code that may cause a peformance
hit on disk access if the cache is larger than 128K so this trick is
more likely to help Macs running System 7, but again experiment to
see what works for you.



Apple charges for system software because Apple's policy makers
suspect they'll make more money by charging for it than by not
charging for it. Apple is a publicly held corporation in a
capitalist economy where the law requires corporations to make
reasonable attempts to maximize profits. To give away something
Apple could make more money by charging for would be a breach of
the fiduciary responsibility of Apple's Board of Directors and
actionable by Apple stockholders in a court of law.

Note from Oliver: Today you can download System 7.0 and the 7.5 update at

SYSTEM 7.5 GIVE ME...? (2.2)

Quite a lot actually. You get Apple Guide, MacTCP, the ability
to read DOS formatted floppy disks, a hierarchical Apple menu, a
menu bar clock, QuickDraw GX, some new fonts, drag and drop between
applications, background floppy formatting, a disk cache that
actually works, AppleScript and a scriptable Finder, QuickTime 2.0,
and about fifty other features of varying utility. There's no
feature that makes the upgrade a necessity, so if you're happy with
your current system software and don't want to spend $90 for these
new features don't. Most new software should continue to work well
with System 7.0 and 7.1 for at least the next year

Note from Oliver: Today you can download System 7.0 and the 7.5 update at


Apple rationalized its decision to begin charging for system
software by claiming that most people had been unable to get system
software updates from online sources or authorized dealers (and of
course they rationalized their refusal to authorize low-price mail
order dealers by claiming that Macs require dealer support) and by
claiming that charging for system software will make retailers more
willing to stock Apple system software and thus make it easier to
obtain. This denies the reality that System 7.0 was in fact readily
available from the primary sources of payware Mac software as well
as being freely available online. And I doubt a full-page ad for
System 7.0 in the software catalogs costs Apple any more than an ad
for System 7.5. This rationalization also ignores how previously
in large organizations only one person needed to be able to get
the system software from a dealer, online, or bundled with a
new CPU before others could freely and legally copy it. So,
despite Apple's protests to the contrary, it is now harder to
get a current copy of the system software thus creating a FAQ
where there was none before.

The easiest way to get System 7.5 is to visit your local
software retailer and buy it for about $99 (though I've seen
it as low as $90 and as high as $129 so shop around). You can
also order it from all the usual mail-order houses like Mac Zone.
It comes in two versions, one on high density floppy disks and one
on CD-ROM that also includes a couple of Peirce Printing Tools
extensions for QuickDraw GX. Both of these versions include
an upgrade manual.

Note from Oliver: Today you can download System 7.0 and the 7.5 update at

HOW CAN I USE SYSTEM 6 ....? (2.4)

The PowerBook 100, Classic II, LCII, Performa 200, and Performa
400 all work with System 6.0.8L, a special foreign version of System
6.0.8 that was hacked together because these machines beat many of
the internationalized versions of System 7 to market. I do not know
where you can find System 6.0.8L. If anyone does know please tell
me, and I'll add it here.


For a company that's relatively hip to the international marketplace
Apple certainly has a difficult time comprehending that its
customers might need to work with more than one language. A
recent call to the Apple Customer Assistance Center support line
revealed that system software is available only in the country
of origin. The support rep was unable even to provide contact
information for distributors in countries outside the United
States. What the support rep didn't know (but I do) is that most
international versions of System 7.0.1 are available for anonymous
ftp from

<URL -> (shorten URL)

Your best chance to get Korean system software or any
international version of System 7.1 is to have a friend in
the appropriate country mail you the software.

If you want to work with multiple languages but don't
need an entire foreign system, you first need to upgrade to at
least System 7.1, the first truly international operating system.
System 7.1 includes numerous hooks to support multiple languages.
After installing System 7.1 the first thing you'll want are keyboards,
fonts, and script systems that let you write in your language of
choice. Many international keyboard layouts are included in


A number of Roman keyboards are also included with System 7.5.

Apple's Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Cyrillic, Hebrew and Arabic
(including Farsi) Language Kits are available from the usual
sources including MacConnection (1-800-800-2222) for a little
less than $200 each. See


No other language kits are available as of June, 1996. So once
again if you want to work in Icelandic, Turkish or something else,
you need to have a friend in the appropriate country send you
the software. Note from Oliver: now more are available - look at:

Application software that supports your language of choice is also
nice to have. Currently the only fully WorldScript savvy word
processors are Nisus Writer 4.15 and WorldWrite 3.0. (SimpleText
is WorldScript savvy, but only supports text up to 32K in size.)
Nisus Writer supports Western European languages and Japanese.
With an extra cost ADB dongle it can also work in Arabic, Chinese,
Korean, Farsi and most Eastern European languages. WorldWrite
3.0 supports all the Apple Language Kits including Japanese,
Chinese, Cyrillic, Hebrew and Arabic. No dongle is needed.
$189 bundles are available with your choice of Apple's Cyrillic,
Hebrew or Arabic language kit.


Several other products including ClarisWorks 4.0 and WordPerfect 3.5
support WorldScript I languages (That is, right-to-left systems
like English and Chinese) but not left-to-right, WorldScript II
languages like Hebrew and Arabic.


If you use System 7.0, 7.0.1, or the System 7.0 printer drivers,
you need System 7 Tuneup 1.1.1. The tuneup includes a number of
fixes and enhancements to System 7, including substantially faster
printer drivers, a StyleWriter driver that supports background
printing, a fix that saves several hundred kilobytes of memory on
non-networked Macs, and, most importantly, a vaccine for the
disappearing folders bug.

If you're using System 7.1, 7.1 Pro or 7.1.2, then you should
install System Update 3.0 instead, available from


This replaces all the various System Software Updates and Hardware System
Updates. None of these are necessary for System 7.5.

If you're using System 7.5 you should install System 7.5 Update 2.0
instead. You can get it from


This will bring you to System 7.5.3. Next you should install the
System 7.5.3 Revision 2 update, available from



You need to put the file "DA Handler" in your System Folder. It
should be on one of your System 6.0.x disks. Under Finder the Desk
Accessories load into the memory provided by your application.
Under MultiFinder they load into their own memory space provided
by DA Handler.

DO I NEED SYSTEM 7.0.1? (2.8)

Officially if you don't have a Quadra or PowerBook, you don't
need System 7.0.1. Unofficially some changes were made that speed
up SANE (numerics) operations on 32-bit clean Macintoshes with a
floating-point coprocessor. These include all IIci's and IIfx's plus
LC's and IIsi's that have had a coprocessor specially installed.
(Neither of the latter machines ships with a coprocessor.) See


SYSTEM 7.0.1, or 7.5 ON 800K DISKS? (2.9)

As of this writing Apple has not made any system software after
7.0 available on 800K floppy disks, and it is unlikely that they
will ever do so. You can still install System 7.5 from a CD-ROM.

If you can somehow get copies of the floppy disks onto your hard
drive, either via a friend's machine with an external hard disk or
through a network, you can install from that hard disk. On your
friend's machine drag the icon for each floppy disk onto the hard
drive you'll use to do the install. The Finder will make copies
of the contents of each disk and put them in folders labelled
"Disk 1," "Disk 2," and so on. Place all the disk folders in
another folder, and label that folder "Net Install". Then open the
Disk 1 folder, take out the installer application and script and
place it at the top level of your Net Install folder. If
necessary you now need to shut down your friend's Mac and move
their external hard drive to your Mac. Once the hard drive has
been connected to the Mac on which you want to install the new
system software, launch the installer.

You can also use the free utility ShrinkWrap to mount the images of
the 1400K System 7.0.1 disks on your hard drive and install from the
image rather than a floppy. Be warned, however, that installing
system software from mounted images is a notoriously unreliable
procedure. Be sure you make a complete backup of your hard disk and
have a set of system disks on genuine floppies before attempting to
install from mounted images. See



Does anyone really understand Apple's Unix strategy? If so will you
please explain it to me? As I understand it, A/UX, Apple's well-
respected Unix product of long standing, has been killed in favor
of IBM's roundly despised AIX. A/UX has been officially discontinued
and is not supported on most current hardmare except for some WorkGroup
Servers. Nonetheless you can still buy it and run it on almost any Mac.
AIX, the new "official" Apple Unix cannot be bought for and will not
run on any Apple hardware. Does this leave you confused? If so you're not
alone. For more information about A/UX see Jim Jagielski's FAQ list at


MachTen from Tenon is a commercial Unix-like overlay for the MacOS.
Send email to or see


for more details. Because MachTen uses the MacOS filesystem, it has
problems dealing with things like hard links. It's close enough for
many people, though. In particular it's useful for DNS, NNTP,
multihomed Web sites and other Internet server functions that cannot
be handled reliably under the MacOS.

There are development versions of both NetBSD and Linux for the Mac.
Neither is suited for anything more than the developers at this time.
If you're interested in working on the port, see


for more information.



Try a Find on the missing filenames. In the meantime
grab Disk First Aid 7.2 from which
should be able to fix this problem. See



Possibly the folder contains items that are locked or in use and
can't be thrown away. Turn off file-sharing (if it's on) and quit
all applications. Then try to throw the folder away. If that
doesn't work and you're using System 6, hold down the option-key and
drag the folder into the trash; or, if you're using System 7, hold
down the option key while selecting "Empty Trash" from the special
menu. Holding the option key down lets you throw away locked items.
If that doesn't work restart the computer, hold down the option key,
and try again. If you still can't throw away the folder, try
throwing away the items in the folder (if any) one by one until you
find the ones giving you trouble. Remove them from the folder, and
then throw the folder away. If you still can't throw the folder
away, you've discovered a "Folder from Hell." Create an empty folder
on *ANOTHER* disk with the same name as the Hell Folder. Then copy the
new folder onto the same disk in the same folder as the Hell Folder.
Click "Yes" when asked if you want to replace the Hell Folder. Now
you should be able to throw the just copied folder away. If that
doesn't work, get a copy of John Jeppson's HellFolderFix utility from



Apple originally planned to treat removables like floppies
rather than hard disks for file-sharing. At the requests of beta
testers file-sharing on removables was hacked into System 7.0 at
the last minute. However, since file-sharing was originally to be
implemented only on fixed drives, no means were created for the
host Mac to tell other Macs when a new volume went on or off-line.
Therefore sharing a removable volume requires that the disc or
cartridge be inserted and mounted when filesharing is turned
on. Turn filesharing off and on with the drive powered up and
the cartridge inserted and you should then be able to share
the removable.


When file-sharing is turned on it makes all disks larger
than two megabytes available for remote access by the owner even
if they aren't specifically shared. This prevents the dismounting
of removable media. Turn off file-sharing first. Then drag the
volume icon to the trash. Apple's recently released free utility
UnmountIt will do this automagically, i.e. turn off file-sharing,
eject the disk, and then turn file-sharing back on. See



Turn off file-sharing as described above. If the disk you can't
rename is not shared, you need to unlock the drive name. This can
be done by Kazu Yanagahira's freeware utility Unlock Folder or by
Disk First Aid 7.2. See

<URL - Disk First Aid 7.2 >



In System 7 you change the icon by cutting or copying an icon
from somewhere, Getting Info on the hard drive, and pasting the
icon into the Get Info box.

If the normal pasting of an icon onto your hard drive fails,
you'll need to perform some simple software repairs. You will
need a utility capable of changing information bits on files
and volumes such as ResEdit, the $10 shareware FileTyper 4.0,
or the payware DiskTop. See

<URL for ResEdit at>

First turn the "Has Custom Icon" bit on the hard drive OFF. This
may be all you need to do so try pasting a new icon again. If this
still doesn't work, you need to delete the old icon first. This
icon is stored in a file called Icon\r on the root level of your
hard disk. (This file may have a different name in some
international systems. For instance in the Danish system it's
called Symbol\r.) Since the Icon\r file is invisible you'll need
to turn the Invisible bit of the file off to make the file visible.
Then trash it. Next create an empty folder, Get Info..., on the
folder and paste the icon you want for your hard drive in the
folder's Get Info box. Make the Icon\r file inside that folder
visible and move it to the root level of your hard drive. (You can
do this by dragging the file onto the icon of your hard disk.) Now
make the file invisible again. Use your utility to turn the "Has
Custom Icon" bit ON. Finally restart the computer and rebuild
the desktop.

In System 6 you must use the hard drive formatting software
to give the hard drive a new icon. You'll be limited to the
icons included with the formatter. You may be able to edit the
icons included with the formatter using a resource editing tool
like ResEdit.

FONTS (4.0)


Chris Reed's $10 shareware TTConverter 1.5 will convert back
and forth between Windows and Macintosh TrueType fonts. See


The payware programs FontMonger ($95 street) and MetaMorphosis
($89 street) convert between all types of TrueType and PostScript
fonts. On the PC side the REFONT program available from


will convert Macintosh Truetype fonts to PC TrueType fonts and
vice-versa. It also converts Macintosh PostScript fonts to PC
PostScript fonts and vice-versa. It will not, however, convert
between PostScript fonts and TrueType fonts.


For screen display a Mac first looks for a bitmap font with the
appropriate name in the appropriate size. If it finds it, it uses
it. If you're running System 7 or have installed the TrueType init
in System 6, your Mac then looks for the the appropriate TrueType
font. If it can't find the TrueType font and ATM is installed,
it then looks for the appropriate PostScript outline font. As a
penultimate resort your Mac will scale a bitmap font to the needed
size. Finally, if all else fails and the Mac simply cannot find
any member of the requested family, then the display will use the
default font, Geneva on U.S. systems, possibly something else on
international systems.

On a QuickDraw printer (ImageWriter, DeskWriter, StyleWriter,
etc.) the Mac normally looks for fonts in the same order it does
for the screen. However on some printers in some modes it may
look for a larger size of the requested font so it can scale
the font down to match the higher resolution of the printer.

A PostScript printer looks for fonts in a different order. First
it looks for a PostScript outline font on the printer's hard drive
(if any). Then it looks for the font in the printer's ROM. Then it
looks for the PostScript font on the computer's hard disk. If the
printer can't find an appropriate PostScript outline font, then it
will use a TrueType font. If it can't find the TrueType font,
it looks for a bitmap of the font. Finally if it can't find
any version of the font anywhere, it substitutes Courier with
predictably horrible results.


If you're using System 7.1 or later the answer is simple:
Put all fonts (Truetype, PostScript outline, QuickDraw GX and bitmap)
in the Fonts folder inside the System Folder. You can put them other
places (the Extensions folder, the System Folder itself, the system file)
but there's no good reason to do so. In particular storing fonts in the
system file unnecessarily is a common cause of system file corruption
and all sorts of hard to diagnose problems. When you upgrade to
System 7.1 or later, be sure to remove all fonts from the system file.

If you're using a system older than 7.1, TrueType fonts and
bitmaps belong in your System file. In System 7.0 and 7.0.1
PostScript outline fonts go in the Extensions folder. In System 6
PostScript outline fonts belong in the System Folder.

Many older versions of font and printer utilities like ATM
and SendPS cannot find fonts placed in System 7.1's Fonts folder.
Most of these utilities will work if you put your printer fonts
in the Extensions folder or System folder instead. However in
all cases I'm aware of upgrades to these utilities that work
with the Fonts folder are either cheap (under $10) or free.



Typically it means nothing at all of any use to the end user.
Your time is much more productively spent trying to figure out what
actions in which application caused the crash so that you can avoid
them in the future rather than deciphering system error numbers.
After all, knowing that Error 16 means a math coprocessor is not
installed doesn't help you much in fixing the problem. Knowing that
this happens in QuarkXPress 3.0 every time you try to link two text
boxes on a master page when copies of those text boxes already
contain text does. (And in this case the error message isn't even
accurate.) If you really want to know what that number means, get



A Type error is your Macintosh's way of telling you that it's
sick and plans to take a nice vacation in Belview for a few days.
Among developers Type errors are officially known as DS errors where
DS stands for "Deep Spaghetti" (though a somewhat more colorful
expression is often used in place of "Spaghetti"). Your
applications are toast. Any unsaved data is lost. Once you've
been hit with a Type error there's absolutely nothing you can do
about it. You'll probably need to restart your Macintosh either
by hitting the programmer's key or by turning the Mac off and on
if the programmer's key isn't installed.

The most common type errors are Type 1 and Type 3. Type 1 is
a bus error. It's most commonly symptomatic of software that isn't
32-bit clean. A Type 3 error is an illegal instruction. It's most
often symptomatic of poorly written software. You may occasionally
be able to avoid Type 1 errors by turning 32-bit addressing on or off
or by turning the cache on or off if you have a 68040 Mac. Otherwise
there is almost nothing you can do about these errors except try to
find out what actions, applications, and/or extensions cause them
so you can report them to the programmer and avoid them in the
future. There is no point posting about Type errors to the net.


A/ROSE by any other name would still generate as much pointless
net traffic. Apple's Realtime Operating System Environment is not
needed by 99.9% of the people who stumble across it. It's only
needed if you have an MCP NuBus card of which there were about
six at last count. The only even moderately common one is Apple's
short Ethernet NuBus card. If you don't have such a card, feel
free to trash A/ROSE.


Easy Access is a *WONDERFUL* system extension from Apple, useful
for far more than its intended purpose. Unfortunately it's also the
source of a lot of confusion and strange behavior on many Macs. It's
even been suggested that anti-virals should detect and report the
presence of Easy Access since it produces more false virus reports
than any other software in Macintosh history. If you're using
System 7, your Mac will emit an ascending whistle for about two
seconds when Easy Access is turned on and a descending whistle
when Easy Access is turned off. You may also hear a beep after
some keypresses.

Easy Access has two pieces, Sticky Keys, which is turned on by
hitting the Shift key five times in a row without moving the mouse,
and Mouse Keys which is turned on by hitting Command-Shift-Clear.
Sticky Keys lets you type things like Command-Shift-Clear without
doing the Rose Mary Wood shuffle. Just hit the modifer keys you
want to use and then hit the regular key. For example if Sticky Keys
is turned on, you could also turn on Mouse Keys by typing Command,
then Shift, then Clear rather than by hitting them all at once.
When Sticky Keys is turned on an icon appears in the menu bar
to the right of the application icon/menu. Mouse Keys lets the
numeric keypad substitute for the mouse. This is especially useful
for making precision, single-pixel adjustments in draw and paint
programs and for safely shutting down or restarting your computer
when the mouse is frozen.


By far the best way is to divide your disk into multiple
partitions, one partition for each system folder. Then use your
formatting software to select the partition to boot from. This
will, however, trash everything on your hard disk so back up first.

Soft partitions like those created by Norton Utilities and other
utility packages are not nearly as reliable or safe for your data
as hard partitions created by a disk formatter like Drive7.

If you don't want to repartition your hard drive, you can keep
compressed archives of system folders you might want to use on your
hard disk. To switch system folders you'll need to boot off a
floppy or a second hard disk, compress the old system folder, and
uncompress the new one. Just be sure that when you boot your Mac
there's not more than one uncompressed System Folder on any one

Finally if you absolutely must keep multiple, bootable system
folders on the same hard disk, Keisuke Hara's freeware System
Switcher 1.1 or Kevin Aitken's System Picker 1.0.1 will adjust
the boot blocks of the hard disk so you can pick which one your
Mac will boot off from. See


If you put a copy in the Startup Items folder of your System 7
system folder, and specify it as a startup item in System 6,
then whenever you start up you'll be offered a choice of systems.


On Macs that don't have a physical programmer's switch you
can restart the computer with Command-Control-Power and drop
into the debugger with Command-Power. Also note that in System 7
Command-Option-Escape will force most applications (including
the Finder) to quit so you no longer need to activate the debugger
just to kill a frozen application.

Elliotte Rusty Harold

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