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DEFAULT CATCH!

Yesterday my computer froze solid. This is actually an odd thing even for my computer (usually it just breaks without warning). I restarted the computer and continued reading email/surfing/whatever I was doing and then went to bed.

Today when I got home, the computer was frozen solid again (with the screen saver on). Fearful, though very unsurprised mind you, I restarted the computer and it froze when it hit the gray Apple logo but before the circling arrows appear. Hard restart and it freezes again. Disconnect everything except the monitor and keyboard/mouse and it still freezes. Zap the PRAM and when it starts up, I now drop to the lovely Open Firmware with:

DEFAULT CATCH!, code=300 at %SRR0: ff84755c %SRR1: 0000b030

I really wish I could link it somehow with something I did (things that make no sense irritate me), but I'm pretty sure there are other Mac users who check their email (and listen to music with iTunes _at_the_same_time_ *gasp*) and don't have such problems...

More detailed computer specs:

Power Mac G4 2x800Mhz
Mac OS X 10.2.4 (one partition; no Classic support)
512MB RAM (stock)
Geforce 2 MX Twinview
a low-end ATI card (for second monitor)
LiteOn 52x24x52 (replaced CDRW/DVD combo)
2x80G Western Digital hard drives (RAID1)
stock Zip drive
stock SCSI card

Thanks and I look forward to any help anyone can provide.
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phat64
Asked:
phat64
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1 Solution
 
weedCommented:
When was the last time you ran Norton Disk Doctor or Drive 10?
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phat64Author Commented:
Haven't yet, but I recently (about a month ago) reformatted and reinstalled everything.
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weedCommented:
Well, i'd suggest running one of the two. Depending on what goes into your machine, alot can go wrong in a month.
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phat64Author Commented:
Haven't yet, but I recently (about a month ago) reformatted and reinstalled everything.
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phat64Author Commented:
(sorry for double post)

I think I'll try that.  How certain are you that it's a hard drive problem?
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weedCommented:
Not certain but its ALWAYS a good idea to eliminate that first. You could take it into the shop, replace the motherboard, ram, spend hundreds on repairs, only to find you could have solved it in 10 minutes, at minimal expense, with a simple disk utility.
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phat64Author Commented:
Makes sense.

I tried booting from the Jaguar CD (would have tried it earlier, but I didn't think the LiteOn would boot for some reason), and it reported that one of the disks on the RAID set was damaged or missing.  After rebuilding the set, that problem was fixed.  I also fixed quite a few permission problems it found, but it still drops to OF with the same default catch message.

The other disk utility I tried (and the only other one I have) is Disk Warrior and it simply isn't finding any disks (other than its own CD).  Maybe because they're on a RAID set?

Do I need to use other disk utilities or is there something else I can do?
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weedCommented:
Sounds like you made a good start. I'd give Norton Disk Doctor or Drive 10 a shot. Apple's disk utility hardly fixes everything so there are probably still some odd issues youll want to fix.
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phat64Author Commented:
I found this in Apple's knowledge base:

Symptom:
If you have a RAID scheme set up, your computer may not start up if you reset parameter RAM (PRAM) when you restart.

Products affected:
Mac OS X

Solution:
Restart your computer while holding down the Option key to select your startup system.
If this doesn't work, restart your computer while holding down the Command, Option, Shift, and Delete keys.

After following its instructions, it no longer fails and drops to OF, but it still can't complete starting up.  After the Apple logo appears and the circling arrows appear for about a minute, the Apple logo becomes a circle with a line through it called the prohibitory sign.  According to Apple, this occurs when either permissions have been modified or the following files or directories have been moved/deleted/renamed:

mach_kernel (an invisible file)
Applications (a visible folder)
automount (an invisible folder)
Library (a visible folder)
System (a visible folder)
Users (a visible folder)

The suggested solution is to boot from a Mac OS 9 CD and check for these files.  The only problem with that is, the disk isn't visible.

Any further comments?  Meanwhile, I guess I'll get myself a copy of Drive 10.
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phat64Author Commented:
Nevermind.  I tried the "get disgusted, turn off the computer, and do something to calm yourself for a little while" trouble-shooting tactic and the computer worked when I got back.  I'm still getting Drive 10 though because I often do have drive related problems.  I haven't ever got such a tool because nobody else I know has one (all Windows users), but maybe Windows comes with one or something?

Thanks for your comments.
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weedCommented:
The windows disk utility is based on the Norton Disk Doctor engine.
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