I have a Macintosh SE. It's the version that has a stock 68000, one floppy drive and one hard drive.

I believe the hard drive is dead. It spins up but all I get is a flashing question mark in the middle of the screen.

I saw a YouTube video where someone was able to boot a Macintosh Classic using CMD OPTION X O and it would boot to a small OS.

I tried that on my SE but it did not work.

Is there something similar for the SE?

I do not have any other boot disks.

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately, no, the Mac SE doesn't have a ROM disk.

Is it a regular SE, an SE FDHD, or an SE Superdrive? If it is an FDHD or Superdrive, you could write a boot floppy using any USB floppy drive. If it's the original SE, you need an older Mac that can write 800k floppies.

  • That's what I was afraid of. I also have a Mac SE FDHD that works. I have some old Amiga disks. Would those format to 800k? Do you think I could format one of those from my other SE Mac? I would try it now but my disks are in my storage building at the moment. Thanks
    – cbmeeks
    Dec 7, 2016 at 1:49
  • Yes, the Mac can use the same floppies as the Amiga. The 800k format is for double sided, double density disks (same disks as Amiga 880k format). If you only have high density disks (they have two holes, whereas double density ones only have one hole), you can format them as double density and it will work fine short-term. Long-term, they might not hold data reliably. Dec 7, 2016 at 1:58
  • I think I will just do that. Try to make me a System disk and probably just replace the hard drive. Thanks for the information!
    – cbmeeks
    Dec 7, 2016 at 2:10
  • you should check out the scsi2sd project, you could replace your hard drive with a 4 gb sd card. There is a version of System 7 that shipped on 800k floppies. you might be able to locate disk images somewhere Dec 7, 2016 at 22:52
  • also in a pinch (they will lose data long term) you can take a standard high density floppy and put tape over the hole on one side, and then format it 800k using your other mac. Dec 8, 2016 at 15:04

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