I just picked up a used Apple IIc. For some reason all I get when I boot is Check Disk Drive on the screen, even with a bootable disk in the internal drive:

display showing "check disk drive"

I cannot even get the system to read the external drive when powering on, so I assume I will have to tell the system to boot from the external drive once booting into BASIC.

Does anyone know how I might boot into BASIC and what command I need to run to load software from the external floppy drive?

  • I think you might have a hardware problem with the disk controller, but regardless, try LeftApple-Reset (i think). That should drop you at the Basic prompt, no disk required.
    – Geo...
    May 22, 2020 at 21:30
  • Try a ProDOS (must be ProDOS!) disk in the external drive. Depending on ROM revision, it can boot from that.
    – Brian H
    May 23, 2020 at 0:32

2 Answers 2


Press: Ctrl+Reset

This should get you to the Applesoft BASIC prompt, with a checkerboard cursor:


If you don't see that then something is wrong. Otherwise you can check your ROM version:



ROM version 255 can supposedly boot the external drive (though I've never tried this personally) but some disks might not boot correctly. You can try with:


ROM versions 0, 3, and 4 need to boot the internal drive first (as PR#7 does something else) then the external drive can be accessed as drive 2.

  • 1
    Thanks. Mine is ROM version 255. I was able to get into BASIC just fine. May 23, 2020 at 16:23

Simply press RESET (depending on model and setting you might have to hold down CTRL or Open-Apple+CTRL before pressing RESET).

This will bring you into default APPLESOFT BASIC.

Just, BASIC does not contain any disk commands - unless DOS is loaded from floppy - which pressing Reset will abort :)

The only function available is to boot from a controller by typung PR#6RETURN - which I'd assume won't work either.

  • Since it is a //c, you would do Control-Reset. Reset by itself was only supported on the ][ and ][+ machines if you disabled the Control requirement (toggle switch inside the case on the keyboard PCB). Using Open-Apple plus Ctrl-Reset wouldn't bring him to BASIC since it would instead cause a cold boot of the machine.
    – bjb
    May 28, 2020 at 1:14

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.