can't get 2009 mini past apple logo

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by madeirabhoy, Oct 5, 2013.

  1. madeirabhoy macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 26, 2012
    #1
    i honestly think macs have human feelings and know when they are being replaced, similar happened with my wife's powerbook which lasted 10 years and died when we went to FNAC to buy her a macbook...


    anyway. got iMac. mini had worked perfectly but wanted some more power. moved mini into bedroom to work through tv which has a vga socket to use as a plex media player.

    it did keep freezing but restarts always fixed. then sometimes it wouldn't start, hanging on the apple logo but a restart would fix.


    now it won't. press the button and i get the apple logo with a spinning circle below it. i can leave it for hours and it doesn't stop.


    i have an apple wireless keyboard.

    I've tried starting it up with alt held down to choose startup drive, I've tried holding down command S, command V, I've also held down command option P R to reset the pram.


    none of this works or even looks like the computer can see the key presses, it still starts up the same. it bongs the normal way but then apple logo, spinning circle....

    the cd drive has been broken for years unfortunately...
     
  2. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #2
    It might be a failing hard drive. Do you have any external drive you can try booting from?
     
  3. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    I've just tried it with a usb stick with a bootable system but i can't select it as i can't get the computer to do anything.

    i even just put a bootable disc in it even though i know that it won't read it, plugged in the usb stick with the bootable system on it,

    held down both alt and control as i can't remember which one is right, to select a bootable disc, and start it up...

    it spends a minute trying to read the disc, so i know the computer is still alive, then no matter what i hold down it ejects the disc and starts up with the apple logo and spinning circle...
     
  4. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #4
    Holding the [Option] key (aka [ALT] key on some keyboards) brings up the boot menu.

    If it tries to read a disc and it is unable to, it will spit it back out.

    BTW, what model of Mac Mini is it?
     
  5. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    early 2009 2ghz and holding down any key does nothing. not sure i can hear a hard drive spin
     
  6. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #6
    My suspicions are still a defective hard drive. The only ways to test would be to replace the drive or boot from an alternate drive...

    You mentioned that you had a bootable USB flash drive. Was it an OS X installer? If not and since you have another Mac, you can make one following these instructions.
     
  7. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    i downloaded from msj a bootable stripped down os x with repair apps, but the problem is i don't even get to select it as holding down ALT does nothing it goes straight to the apple logo and doesn't go any further.

    the only thing i can get the mac to do apart from light on, grey screen, apple logo, loading circle is stick a disc in, and that just makes it chew on it for 30 seconds, spit it out and then go back to its old habits.
     
  8. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #8
  9. niteflyr macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Sounds like it is not picking up wireless keyboard. Try a USB keyboard.
     
  10. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    was thinking that but alas i haven't got one. however....



    pulled the mini apart, hope i can put it together again :eek:


    took the dvd drive out, do i need to put that back if its buggered?


    remembered that my nintendo wii's external drive is an enclosure i bought when the original casing broke, took that apart.. stuck the drive into it, plugged it into my mac..


    and looks like the drive is technically alive but buggered. it shows up, isn't mounted, running disk utility on it finds errors but gives up trying to fix

    "error: disk utility can't repair this disk...disk, and restore your backed up files."



    do i have to have an internal drive at all? can i boot it from an external drive or usb drive without having a hard drive in the machine just to see if it works before buying a new drive?
     
  11. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #11
    It can run fine without an optical drive.

    No, your hard drive does not have to be internal, but I feel it makes most sense to put the replacement back in as an internal.
     
  12. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    was thinking since I've got external drives, i can at least make sure the computer works too before getting an internal drive
     
  13. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    right, at least i know that a) the hard drive is working, for how long tho.....
    and b) the computer works.


    plugged the drive into my iMac. downloaded a 'copy' of 10.8, i do own it but easier to download elsewhere. installed it onto the drive. started up my iMac from said drive. all fine. put drive into computer, at least it doesn't show an apple icon it shows a folder with a question mark instead.


    however this at least allows me to stick in my memory stick with disk utilities on it and it starts from that. presents me with a menu of the utilities but neither my mouse nor my keyboard are recognised.

    queue hunt through cupboards for an hour as i know i own a wired magic mouse. no joy.

    now downloading a copy of 10.6 because this is what the machine came with.




    will this fail because installing it on the drive using my iMac means it installs files for the iMac and not the mini?


    at least if i can get a bootable usb drive with it on i only have to borrow a cabled mouse or buy a cheap one.
     
  14. blanka macrumors 68000

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    Jul 30, 2012
    #14
    Login problems: first try running the combo update. It does not destroy anything yet it fixes a lot of these problems.
     
  15. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 26, 2012
    #15
    is it possible that its the connectors of my drive?

    i managed to get a copy of lion onto my usb drive. mini starts up from it, it knows to look for wireless keyboards :apple: and all good. go to install it, it doesn't offer the internal drive. bump back to start, open disc utility and that doesn't see the drive either.

    take the drive out again, attach it to my usb enclosure, plug it in and its installing now. when its done ill try again to see if it can see the drive.

    if not, how slow is it going to be with my system on a usb drive? i only use it for plex.
     
  16. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #16
    What we know so far:

    1. Hard drive is recognized when it is in an external enclosure connected to your iMac.
    2. Hard drive is not recognized when connected to the Mac Mini's drive bracket.
    3. Mac Mini boots from USB flash drive.
    4. When booted from USB flash drive, Disk Utility does not see the hard drive.

    Could it be possible that the board that's on the Mac Mini's drive bracket which connects to the main board is defective?
     
  17. madeirabhoy thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 26, 2012
    #17
    woo woo woo !

    still a bit confused as to what was wrong but installed leopard to usb stick. wouldn't see the internal drive.

    took out the internal drive and used a usb caddy

    installed leopard on it

    unplugged it and put it back in mini

    worked


    woo woo woo



    maybe something wasn't in correctly and when i took it all apart it went together better.


    cheers for your advice pastry chef mate
     
  18. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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