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Way OT, MAC help

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by Qvb, Apr 10, 2004.

  1. Qvb

    Qvb Formula 3
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    Nov 9, 2003
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    John Dixon
    My daughters iMAC, freaked out on a CD. I got the CD out but now when I restart it, I get the grey screen with the happy little computer in the middle and the rainbow spinning disc in the upper left hand corner, but that is it. It never starts up. I have restarted many times and disconnected the power but it always does the same thing.
    Does anyone know what I should do?

    Thanks,
    John
     
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  3. Janet

    Janet Karting

    Mar 29, 2004
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    Janet

    If the computer won't start up you are in need of help based on the operating system and the model of iMac. Quickest help is this: Call an Apple store. Call west to find a store still open now. Get past their recording and ask for a "genius". I have done this and had good luck. There is a store at Ala Moana shopping center in Honolulu that would be a good bet. Their number is: 808-949-1075

    I hope you can get the iMac up and running fast!!
     
  4. djs308

    djs308 Formula Junior
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    John,

    Is your iMac still under warranty? If so, take it on in and get it checked out by the Apple folks. If not, and in case you aren't able to get immediate help from an Apple techie, you can try these suggestions. Disclaimer: Since I don't have your iMac in front of me, I can only say that this is what I would try based on the info you gave, but I can't guarrantee it will help in your situation or if it will make things worse.

    First, what exactly happened when you put that CD in the drive when the problem first occurred? Did you hear grinding noises or other unusual sound? If so, it's possible that there is damage to the CD drive. That in turn, may have caused the operating system to fail to boot the system. If the CD drive didn't sound like it was eating the disk but merely failed to mount it, you can try to put in your "startup" CD and try booting from that (hold down the "C" key during startup). I'm guessing you are running OSX so you can actually boot from the OSX disk or the CD that came with your iMac, if you like. If you are successful in doing that, you can run the "Disk Utility" on the CD to try and repair the hard drive and allow you to boot normally.

    Of course, there could be other issues as well that may be the problem but I'd need more info before I would mention them. Definitely try the Apple techs first so they can help you out in a jiffy.
     
  5. TigerAce

    TigerAce Formula 3

    May 29, 2003
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    Yoshi Ace
    Following may work, but worth try.

    1. Zap your memory from previous sequence, and reset parameter RAM: push keyboard, command + option + P + R at the same time when you start the computer. Rainbow circle running & doesn't change to arrow seems parameter is in loop & cannot get out of it.

    2. Insert original system RESTORE disc (you can manually open CD drive, right? - using some pins & insert into a hole by CD drive), now start the computer & push keyboard C. This will ensure MAC to start from CD, so you should be able to get a normal desktop, and then run restore command from this disk. (don't forget to save your important settings on your system file! I usually change the file name to "storage", and then run RESTORATION.

    Hope this works, if didin't, you can contact Apple for further help.
     
  6. KKSBA

    KKSBA F1 World Champ
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    Oct 31, 2003
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    Put in your CD disk 1 from your Apple CD pack (sometimes a DVD-ROM depending on your model). Called MAC OS X Disk 1 or restore CD 1.

    Hold down the C key during reboot. If you need to reboot and it won't pull the powerplug on it.

    When you boot, go to the first menu item and select "disk utilitiy"

    Select your hard drive and select "repair hard drive" after, select "Repair permissions". If you don't see permissions don't worry about it, but it is good periodic maintenance but not critical to your problem.

    Quit disk utility then select quit from the installer menu which will restart you.

    If you have any problems along the way, feel free to PM me. I have used lots of computers for 30+ years and prefer Mac's.
     
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  8. Qvb

    Qvb Formula 3
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    Nov 9, 2003
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    John Dixon
    I want to thank you all for your help.
    I was able to run the hardware repair disc, using the c key.
    It found nothing wrong.
    I then booted from the operating system disc, and it wanted to install the operating system, so i was worried that the hard drive was somehow blank, but when the install disc asked where I wanted to install to, there was no destination, no hard drive that it could see. So it seems to me (I know nothing) that the hard drive is not functioning.
    I think it needs more serious attention.

    Thanks again
    John
     
  9. tiggs

    tiggs Rookie

    Nov 11, 2003
    32
    After booting from the system disc, open up disk utility and check to see if it still recognizes the hard disk. How old is the computer and what speed/processor is it?
     
  10. Qvb

    Qvb Formula 3
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    The iMac is a little over a year old and is probably an 800mhz or 1ghv G4.
    The problem is that when I boot from the disc, all it wants to do is install the operating system, there is nothing else on the screen. When it asks for a place to install there is no hard drive to select.
    Is there something I need to do to bring up the disc utility?

    Thanks
     
  11. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
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    Apr 3, 2001
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    Randy
    things move inside a computer, so nothing is set in stone. since it isn't detecting the drive itself, I'd reseat the hard drive cable to the board and to the harddrive itself. you are only disconnecting & reconnecting it. once that is done, give it a try. you might not have lost anything and this is pure coincindence.
     
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  13. KKSBA

    KKSBA F1 World Champ
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    OK. Your in the right place. When the disk first boots up and when you see the installer come up. go to the menu bar at the top and click, you will see some options. One of them will say "disk utility". Although it appears all you can do is re-install the software, you can in fact get to disk utility through the menu bar.

    Don't worry about re-seating cables inside the iMac for now. That is unlikely in Mac's compared to PC's, especially with an iMac (unless it fell of the table or something just prior to your problem...).
     
  14. MarkCollins

    MarkCollins F1 Rookie
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    Jul 2, 2002
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    As suggested from the menu run the disk repair and also repair the permissions.

    if the disk utility can't find the hard disk then I'm afraid it's more serious, bear in mind though that if hte unit is out of warranty it will be cheaper to have a third party hard drive fitted than an Apple badged one. btw don't try and take it apart!, the unit is heat sensitive and requires thermo paste for reassembly
     
  15. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
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    everything moves inside a computer. it doesn't matter if it is a mac or a pc. but true, it is a PITA to disassemble an iMac.
     
  16. anotherguy

    anotherguy F1 Rookie

    Feb 22, 2004
    2,574
    A simple thing that has solved several odd ball problems for me over the years is to boot into Open Firmware:

    1) When booting, hold down Command-Option-O-F
    2) Release the keys when the white backgroun and the prompt are showing
    3) Type: reset-nvram<ENTER>
    4) Type: resent-all <ENTER>

    The computer should reboot with a new oulook on life. This is kind of like doing a Command-Option-P-R on steriods. If you get stuck let me(or any of the other few and proud macophiles who seem to be here) know. More than happy to help!

    -ag
     
  17. Qvb

    Qvb Formula 3
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    KKSBA- OK, I ran the disk utility and it says "Invalid Node Structure"
    It says the disk needs to be repaired, but the repair button is grayed out, unpushable.

    Thanks again
     
  18. DrStranglove

    DrStranglove FChat Assassin
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    If you are getting that at Disk Utility I think you might be screwed. It sounds to me like the HD is refusing to boot and that is about as bad as it gets. If you bought the AppleCare Protection Plan, you can call them 7days from 8 to 8 PST, I think. If you did not, you will need to take or ship it to apple or a Apple Reseller for professional help.

    A word to the wise, Apple Care cost about $300 for the 3 year warrantee, and is worth it weight in GOLD!!!!! I have bought one for every Mac I have ever had since the first one back in 88.


    DrS
     
  19. KKSBA

    KKSBA F1 World Champ
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    Your not out of luck yet. Keep fighting until the end: A program that will get you out of 98% of disk directory corruption issues (That is what you have with invalid nodes) is Diskwarrior.

    Buy this program, it will come on a bootable cd and will rebuild your directory. It picks up where Apple's Disk utility leaves off.

    You have a good chance of getting back your data... One good thing: Your problem sounds like a directory corruption (soft) problem rather than a hardware fault.

    Diskwarrior can be found in most stores that carry Apple stuff. Stay away from Norton utilities, get Disk warrior instead.

    http://www.alsoft.com/DiskWarrior/index.html
     
  20. tiggs

    tiggs Rookie

    Nov 11, 2003
    32
    He's got a flat panel iMac and its not that hard to take apart nor do you need thermo paste for reassembly. After popping off the bottom plate(4 small phillips screws) and taking out some long screws(T8?), you can take the whole bottom assembly. There's some cables you detach as you pull the bottom off and the logic board resides in this section. No need to touch the heatsinks for the processor or the graphics chip as they stay itnact.

    Now that the optical/drive bays are exposed, its just a few more screws and cables to pull the HD and put a new one in. Since its over a year old, out of warranty, and it sounds like the HD is bad you're probably best off to just buy any standard ATA HD and put a new one in.
     

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