When i boot up my MacBook it flashes a file with a question mark. I think I somehow erased some of my files or maybe because I (or my mom) accidentally closed the lid while in recovery. i have done Command-Option-R at start-up and then got stuck on the screen that said to pick a drive to install OS X Yosemite.

I tried to use the same commands Command-Option-R but it shows an error sign on the spinning globe and apple.com support. I'm stuck. Please help. I hate not being able to use my Mac. Thanks.

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    What does "while in recovery" mean when the lid was closed. What model of MacBook - Are you following any support article from Apple on how to proceed or is that what you are asking for - directions to step by step reinstall the OS? Please edit the details into the question body and lastly, Welcome to Ask Different. – bmike Dec 30 '15 at 17:42

Hope you made a backup because you may need to start fresh.

1) If you were upgrading and your able to log in, restart the process.

2) If you're unable to log in, either try to restart and try recovery or log in as a different user and retrieve/backup your files.

3) Get your MacOS DVD ready and get busy with a clean install, then upgrade and tell your mom to never touch a Mac in recovery. #MacLivesMatter.

4) If you have an external device with a working OS, try recovering your files first.


If you manage to boot do not shut it down until you backup the drive. Then replace the hard drive regardless of how well you think it is working.

The flashy folder-questionMark means the OS cannot find the boot directory.

This was happening to me intermittently and just kept getting worse. Fortunately I backup my drive with Carbon Clone Copy. I replaced the hard drive myself following directions on iFixit.com. They sell the proper tools to do this as well. Then I restored my backup.

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