2009 iMac having serious problems

Discussion in 'iMac' started by misspaperwait, Nov 29, 2014.

  1. misspaperwait macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2011
    Okay so I have a 2009 iMac that I recently updated to Yosemite. It was working fine this morning albeit a little sluggish, then late this evening I wanted to get some work done but it was so slow I couldn't get anything to load. I decided restarting it would be a good first move being as it had cleared up slowness in the past but when I went to reboot I was greeted with a grey, flashing folder with a question mark in the centre. I have been trying everything I could think of all night to figure out what the problem is and have gotten no where. I threw my snow leopard disk in and went to disk utilities, it shows my DVD drive and another device called Media. I clicked get info and it came up with

    Partition map scheme: unformatted
    Disk identifier: Disk7
    Media Name: Media
    Media type: generic
    Connection bus: SATA
    Device tree: IODeviceTree:/PCI0/SATA@1F,2/PRT0@0/PMP@0
    Writeable: Yes
    Ejectable: No
    Location: Internal
    Total capacity: 0 bytes
    S.M.A.R.T. Status: not supported
    Disk number: 7
    Partition number: 0

    All the first aid options on disk utility are greyed out and unclickable and I'm officially at a loss for what to do. Any suggestions would be great, I'm hoping it's still fixable seeing as it was fine earlier today.

    I've tried all the basic stuff, holding option while booting, doing the command+option+P+R thing and so far no luck. It makes the chime when I turn it on and then it sits on a grey screen for a few moments before the flashing question folder pops up.
  2. mreg376 macrumors 65816


    Mar 23, 2008
    Brooklyn, NY
    Sounds like your hard drive needs replacing. Not unusual for a 2009 machine. Hopefully you've been backing up. Throw an SSD in there and you'll be happy.
  3. misspaperwait thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2011
    Thanks for your quick response. What is a SSD? And is it hard to replace a hard drive in these things? I'm no noob to replacing hardware in towers or even laptops I'm just not even sure how I open this thing up haha


    Oh and how would I go about finding out what is compatible with my Mac for a replacement? Could I upgrade it to a larger hard drive/ SSD the one that's in there now is 300 and somthing GB. I would love to get my baby upgraded and working its best
  4. mreg376 macrumors 65816


    Mar 23, 2008
    Brooklyn, NY
    There are Youtube videos out there, on cites like ifixit, that give instructions on how to upgrade.
    An SSD is a solid state (like flash) drive. MUCH faster than a hard drive with a spinning platter, and silent. They're somewhat more expensive, however, so you want to get a size that you need, but not a lot more than you need. So even if you have a 300GB hard drive now, but you're using only 35 GB and don't anticipate a change in your usage, you can get a 128GB SSD, for example.
    Go to Other World Computing (www.macsales.com), where you can insert your iMac model, and they will show you the RAM, HD and SSD options available for your machine. With the specs you can buy the stuff from them or shop around for what you need.
  5. misspaperwait thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 6, 2011
  6. niclaa macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2014
    imac grey screen

    Dear all,

    This is my first post on any forum but i wanted to share my experience to hopefully help others.

    My i5 - 2009 - Imac 27" started to have problems several months ago (freezing at random moments); usually a re-start would solve the problem.

    Several weeks ago it started to get worse; normal re-start did not help and i tried to do all checks that are mentioned on the internet (safe-boot, PRAM, NVRAM, re-installing OSX, re-installing my backup etc etc.).
    First the re-install's worked and the computer ran fine again, for several days at least...
    Then it only worked in the safe mode for several days until stopping completely.

    All the time all checks that i ran said everything was running as it supposed to (and Apple already replaced the hard-drive under their guarantee...).

    To get to the point: my nephew mentioned that it could be the graphic card: the welds / solder that was used to pin the chip on the card is inferieur thus the chip will eventually let go of the card.
    You can see this when you are running graphic programs (games) and you get lines across the screen.
    He took apart the imac and soldered the chip back on the graphic card: problem solved! He also mentioned that most imacs from 2009 - 2011 have the same graphic card and will have the same problem (that's why these cards are no longer available...).

    So: good luck to you all that have the same problems!

    imac 27-inch, late 2009, 2,66 GHz i5, ATI Radeon HD 4850 512 MB graphic card.
  7. Bertvanrheeden macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2017
    Hello All,
    I have the same problem with my iMac 21,5 mid 2010.
    I bought the iMac October 2010, august 2017 the graphic card came loose from the PCB, I let that fixed and now november 2017 I had the same problem, fixed again.
    They told me that the graphic card become to hot because of the dust and advice me to remove the dust ones a year.
    Have others this problem?

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