Gah!! Need help re. re-formatting iMac G5!!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by coopdig, Jun 6, 2006.

  1. coopdig macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #1
    So, I was trying to re-install OSX on the hard-drive of my iMac G5, because I've got a buyer for it.

    I booted-up off the install disk, into the installer; used Disk Utility to zero out the existing data on the drive; began the install process.

    Everything so far had gone fine. Then, disk one finished, and automatically restarted the computer, at which point I was asked to install Disk 2.... then everything froze up!! Disk 1 hadn't--and wouldn't--pop out of the drive so I could insert disk 2; all I got was the beach ball...

    I ended up holding down the power button and managed to get disk 2 in, once, but no go--just a grey screen showed. So, I restarted again, booted from disk 1, and am trying to start the process all over -- HOWEVER, neither the installer nor the disk utility can properly locate the target disk (my HD)!!!!! There is a notice near the bottom of the installer window that says some targets will remain "unavailable until the installer has finished processing" which I assume means working from disk 2 -- which it won't take/ask me for!!

    Any suggestions as to how I might be able to get this process back on track?

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU, in advance!
     
  2. dylan macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2005
    #2
    Put in the first DVD and hold down "C". If that doesn't work I'm not sure what to do... sorry.
     
  3. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #3
    Can Disk Utility format the drive again? Can the drive even be seen at all? :)
     
  4. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #4
    Re. response #1)

    Well, yeah, I've done that... guess my first post wasn't too clear.:p

    I'm back at the installer menu, which shows after booting off the install disk (1).

    Problem is, having already completed the process half-way, the installer won't let me select the destination volume (my HD) either to begin the process again, or to finish it!

    Thanks, though.


    Re. Response #2)
    I'm giving that a shot right now -- it seems to have located the drive, but is beach balling pretty heavy when it comes to doing anything with the drive (e.g., verifying it, repairing it, or deleting it)...

    I'll keep you all posted, though. And thanks.
     
  5. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #5
    Aha! (sort of)

    It's telling me that it cannot unmount the disk...

    So if I can just get it to unmount....???

    How do I do that?
     
  6. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    #6
    I'd shut it down and start from the top. Boot holding C (as you know), go straight to Disk Utility and try to format the drive again. It shouldn't be mounted.
     
  7. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #7
    It say it is, though... maybe because the original install process didn't finish up?

    Is there any way to "manually" unmount it?
     
  8. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
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    #8
    Not that I know of from where you are in the installation process. That's why I'd try shutting it down again and starting afresh. :)
     
  9. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #9

    Oh -- sorry, I think I'm being unclear again!

    I've already tried shutting-down and restarting (booting from installer disk 1) -- twice, actually. This has taken me to the installer menu, from which I can apparently begin moving through the installer process, access disk utility, etc.

    However, both the installer and disk utlity have been blocked from doing anything (beginning a new install proper; verifying; erasing) because they can't access the target volume -- the reason given being that there is a failure to unmount the drive.

    I've shut down again, and have pulled the plug in hopes that restarting the firmware (or whatever it is that happens when you unplug the computer for a certain amount of time) will unmount the drive for me.

    Wish me luck!
     
  10. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
  11. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
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    #11
    Yeah, okay. You could try resetting the System Management Unit (SMU) but I don't know that it'll be all that successful. Do you have another Mac handy? If so, you could try reformatting the disk over Target Disk Mode. :)
     
  12. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #12
    Unfortunately I don't, but I maaaay be able to get my hands on one.

    In the meantime, I was thinking that I might use terminal to force-unmount the volume. (terminal is another of the utilities available when booting from the installer disk.)

    Does anyone know how I might do that?
     
  13. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Apr 3, 2004
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    #13
    Maybe wait for someone more competent to confirm this, but I think it should be a matter of finding the name of your disk.


    Code:
    diskutil list

    It'll most likely be /dev/disk0. In which case you can then unmount it.


    Code:
    diskutil unmountDisk disk0

    I'm not terribly confident with Terminal, particularly when run off the OSX disc on a system that's acting as strangely as yours, so best of luck if you try it. :)
     
  14. coopdig thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    #14
    THANK YOU mad jew!!!

    You comments lead me to what seems to be the answer:
    I entered terminal and, after poking around a bit, typed:
    "diskutil unmount /volumes/untitled" (untitled being the name of the old, "unmountable" problem volume, and the would-be target of the install.)
    Everything was taking a REAAAAALLY long time, so, after some time, I crossed my fingers and went to bed.
    Next morning, voila! The volume was unmounted, I partitioned a new volume, which the installer was able to target for install!!!

    Thanks everyone!
     
  15. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    Apr 3, 2004
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    #15
    No worries. So the machine is back to full running speed now? The slowness hasn't carried across into the system? :)
     

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