Failed mid -11 iMac HDD

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Suffa, Mar 18, 2015.

  1. Suffa, Mar 18, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2015

    Suffa macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    #1
    Hello,

    My mid 2011 21,5" iMac HDD has failed. The computer still runs but everything runs extremely slow at times, freezes, taking forever to boot, lagging... and all this without any load on either CPU or RAM at all...

    The S.M.A.R.T status is failed and i suppose that's it. I shouldn't even bother reinstalling OS X right? A failed SMART status means a bad disk, no? (sometimes the smart status switches back to confirmed but always comes back and views failed, so i guess it's in its early stages of.. well.. death.)

    I though about maybe getting some sort of software to check for bad blocks but then SMART probably analyzes more than bad blocks, what you say?

    Then to my main question, I will most certainly replace the drive if nothing else comes up and I'm pretty sure i know how to do it. The only thing im wondering is if I need to get a specific type of HDD, I read somewhere that the drive needs to be of the same brand (****ing useless seagate in my case) in order for sensors and **** to work?

    Also, how do I get OS X back on my mac. Is the recovery utility software built into some kind of BIOS so the options still pop up when booting with command+R even though there's an empty drive in it ?

    Thanks!
     
  2. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #2
  3. Suffa thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    #3
    "That it has become even more difficult to upgrade the hard drive in the "Mid-2011" and "Late 2011" iMac models with a layer of software complexity certainly is unfortunate. "

    Well ****. So I need some kind of software to not **** the fans up post-upgrade?

    also:

    "This means that the most straightforward way to upgrade the hard drive is to "replace the drive with another model from the same manufacturer that [OWC or another third-party has] confirmed works properly with this thermal sensor cable"

    So I in fact need the same brand or at least a compatible drive. ****, why is this getting more and more complicated haha
     
  4. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #4
    The software for controlling fan speed is called SMCFanControl and is free. Using it unburdens you from needing the cable connected to a specific type of drive..
     
  5. fleshkopter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #5
    Or you can get this http://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/DIDIMACHDD11/ and use any hard drive without extra fan control software. Your imac will treat it as if it is the stock hard drive. This will also work with an ssd in the original hard drive's spot. Don't be intimidated by opening up your imac, i have the same one and have replaced the stock ssd and the power supply and it's really a piece of cake. Follow a good video while you do it. You can find them in the tech help section at owc or non video instructions at ifixit.
     
  6. Suffa thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    #6
    Oh okay thanks! Maybe i'll get that one. it's over 40 bux though and I'm not living state side.

    But again, what about the hdd, IF i get the same brand I've got today, will I then not have problem with the sensors?

    And if I don't care about the sensors and just get a software, can i get any drive i want from any manufacturer?

    I'm thinking of switching to SSD and if I remember correctly the mid -11 21,5" could be fitted with an optional SSD, so there should be an empty SSD space inside my iMac right? And if i get an SSD, will I need extra cables and mounting or is the empty SSD space inside just ready to get an SSD popped into it?

    Thanks guys!
     
  7. fleshkopter, Mar 19, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2015

    fleshkopter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #7
    Without that device, the only hd that will behave as native without software is an Apple branded one. So without that device you might as well get whatever hd floats your boat because you will need software to control the fans. I occasionally use Macs fan control to ramp up the fans for games, and it works very well and is easy to adjust. It also lets go of control very easily should you want it to. Yes there is space for an ssd behind the hard drive. You will need a sata and power cable and you will need to take apart the computer enough to access the back of the mother board and to route the cables. Instead of brackets you can use double sided foam tape to mount it. You won't need the original hd if you get a big enough ssd. Btw, an ssd in the optical drive bay does not work well so don't even think about that. Behind the optical drive with the new cables is the way to go. Works like a charm. I would avoid samsung as the one i tried kept thinking is was experiencing unexpected power losses. Put a Crucial m550 in its place and it has been great. http://www.crystalidea.com/macs-fan-control
     
  8. Suffa thread starter macrumors member

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    May 11, 2013
    #8
    Yea okay. I probably won't get an SSD then because I dont really want to disassemble the whole machine to connect new cables..

    Got an SSD in my 27" which is lightning but HDD will suffice in this one i guess.

    Nothing else to take in consideration before I do this?

    Thanks guys!
     
  9. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #9
    You can connect an SSD to the same SATA cable that's currently plugged into the hard drive... just use some double-sided tape as stated above and you're set!
     
  10. fleshkopter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #10
    You can do that but you will need to use software to control the fans or they will go full speed, even with an ssd. If you spring for that device i linked, you can use any hdd or ssd in place of your failing hdd. You do not have to take apart much to do that as the original hdd cables are still used. You really just have to take the screen off and remove the old hdd.
     
  11. Aggie83 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    #11
    Ifixit just says to reverse the fan sped cable. As in flip it over. It will then short out and your fans won't come on 100%
     
  12. Suffa thread starter macrumors member

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    May 11, 2013
    #12
    I'm looking at a 500GB WD Blue 7200rpm.. that'll work right?

    I'm not getting that device, i'll just use iStat Menus to control the fans, that program is good for that right?
     
  13. Aggie83 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    #13
    Not sure the price of that WD but you can get a decent 512gb SSD for $199. That would breathe new life into your machine. Might keep you happy another few years.
     
  14. fleshkopter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    #14
    I've read that shorting out the temp sensor as you describe is not an option for mid 2011s, but even if it is, that could lead to the hdd getting up without your imac knowing it, not good. So use the fan control software either way. I highly recommend Macs fan control, as linked in my previous post. Simple and intuitive interface And does the job well.
     
  15. Suffa thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    #15
    Okay I'm probably getting an SSD. What about this one: SSD 120GB Intel 530 Reseller

    Includes mounting bracket. Also. I don't need to connect new cables right? I'll just use the existing power and sata cable?
     
  16. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #16
    Are you sure that's not too small for you? I'd opt for at least a 240GB model..

    You can use the same cables, but the temp sensor won't be working so you'll need to use fan control software to keep the fan from overworking.
     

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