Like Windows, OSX has a number of options you can invoke at startup. One example of this would be holding down “c” during the boot up sequence in order to boot from a CD. That is just one example. I thought I should list the rest for my “OSX noob” friends.
In order to invoke these options simply hold down the desired key while OSX is starting up.
shift – Safe Mode
Boots OSX with a minimum set of drivers and options.
option – Startup Manager
Allows you to select which partition to boot from.
c – Boot from CD/DVD
Hold the “C” key down to boot directly from a CD/DVD in the drive.
Mouse button – Eject Media
If you hold down the mouse button during startup what ever is in the CD/DVD drive will be ejected.
cmd v – Verbose Boot
Displays all the startup messages that are normally hidden from the user.
t – Target Mode
This basically turn your computer in an external FireWire drive that you can connect to another computer. Useful if you have to transfer a large amount of data when there is no network present.
There are a few more, less useful, options.
cmd s – Single User Mode
n – Boot up from NetBoot Server
r – PowerBook Display Reset
x – OS X Force boot