Dead Mac in Target mode appears in Disk Utility, but not on Desktop / Finder

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by BudBaxter, Apr 23, 2015.

  1. BudBaxter macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    I was told on another forums I should probably ask here, so here goes:

    Basically, my trusty G5 got a bit of a knock & subsequently died. Now it refuses to startup for more than 30 seconds without shutting down again, unless booting from the Drive Genius dvd. I assume it needs a complete wipe & restore from time machine backup.

    Alas, I haven't backed up my files for a few months now & there are a couple of things I'd quite like to keep hold of. So, I've dug my old iMac out of storage & have used the Target Mode via firewire to try & get access to my old files.

    The G5 Mac HD shows up in Disk Utility on the iMac, but nowhere else.

    Any ideas how I can get access to the files?
  2. mzs.112000 macrumors regular

    Apr 22, 2015

    Do you have a USB HDD enclosure? If so put the HDD into it and plug it in to your iMac, and it should show up, if not I don't know what to do. Someone else may be able to help more.
  3. BudBaxter thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    Sadly, no. :(
  4. mzs.112000 macrumors regular

    Apr 22, 2015
    Do you have a Firewire one? And a Mac that supports firewire?
  5. weckart macrumors 601

    Nov 7, 2004
    If it shows up in Disk Utility, have you tried repairing the drive volumes? You can use Disk Utility or if that doesn't work you can try the tools on Drive Genius.
  6. BudBaxter thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    I've no way of accessing the drive itself other than from within the G5.

    Repair & Rebuild modes do no good in either disk utility or directly with drive genius. Hence my feeling that it might need to be completely wiped/reformatted.
  7. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    Beg, borrow or steal an external enclosure for the hard drive.

    If you suspect the hard drive itself is failing, not just the G5, do the "freezer trick" to keep it alive for as long as it takes to clone it with your iMac.

    Also, reseat your powercord on the G5, those old PSU's were touchy.
  8. A.Goldberg, Apr 23, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2015

    A.Goldberg macrumors 68020


    Jan 31, 2015
    Is this a Power Mac G5 or an iMac G5? I assume you plan on making it functional again?

    You say it got a "bit of a knock", I assume that means you physically bumped it? If you physically jerked the computer hard enough to screw up the hard drive, chances are it's ruined. Wiping/restoring will do you no good.

    Assuming this is a Power Mac G5 and you plan on fixing the computer, just throw in a new hard drive in the open bay. I'd partition the new drive if you must, one section for a fresh OS install, the other for the previous HD data. Then either copy the information (if it mounts in the finder) or attempt to clone in Disk Utility. If neither of these work, you're might be SOL. DiskWarrior may be the last resort if absolutely nothing works.

    As you probably know, replacement 7200rpm 3.5" SATA desktop drives are dirt cheap. Amazon sells them as cheap as ~$25. You're corrupted drive is more than likely dead from the jostle so you will have to buy a new drive anyways.

    I'm not sure how much different an external USB enclosure is than accessing the drive via Target FW Disk Mode or a SATA connection. I imagine no matter the route might end up with the same result of existing in the Disk Utility but not the Finder. SATA at least is the fastest transfer speed so if the drive has minimal life left, the data will come off the fastest (require the least amount of time and wear on the HD)

    Edit: I suppose the other option is grab an external drive (if you have one laying around), format it on the iMac. Use FW Target Disk Mode and Disk Utility to clone the dying drive to the external. When you get a new HD for the G5, do a fresh install and copy the documents over. This will be a much slower process though and will take longer. If your drive is on it's last legs, the less time you want to have it spend running to copy the files. I suppose there is the possibility though that with this option or the 2nd drive bay option stated earlier you could clone the mounting issue you have at hand.

    Edit 2: Does a SMART status appear for the drive in Disk Utility? Also, see what happens if you press "Mount" in DU when selecting the drive (if it lets you)...

    Edit 3: What OS are the two computers running? I think I remember reading sometimes OS X has issues mounting formatted drives of newer/older OS versions.
  9. Dronecatcher, Apr 24, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2015

    Dronecatcher macrumors 68020


    Jun 17, 2014
    Lincolnshire, UK
    When the drive is connected in Target Disk mode, open Terminal and try the instructions listed here:

    Also, if you can get a utility like Tech Tool Pro or similar running that will see the drive, you can perform a disk surface scan/repair.

    There's more hardcore info here - this would appear to be a last ditch attempt to copy the data bit by bit:
  10. BudBaxter thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2015
    Thanks for the tips folks. Nothing worked, so I decided to cut my losses & re-initialise the drive.

    This seems to have fixed the errors on the drive, but I can't get the damn thing to boot up from anything but the Drive Genius dvd. The Mac OSX install disc just gets the flashing question mark icon & the choose startup HD (Boot + option key) just gets a grey screen.

    Probably time to start a new thread!
  11. weckart macrumors 601

    Nov 7, 2004
    Seems like the knock has done something to the SATA ports. Unless I am mistaken the Superdrive in on an ATAPI port. Might be worth getting hold of the ASD and running diagnostics.
  12. jbarley macrumors 68040


    Jul 1, 2006
    Vancouver Island
    Then you'd think the OS X install disk should work as well, providing it is the correct disk for the computer in question.

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