G5 not turning on

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by crowe-t, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. crowe-t macrumors member

    crowe-t

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    Location:
    Satellite Of Love
    #1
    Last month my 1.8 GHz G5 tower stopped working. I tried turning it on and nothing happens. The light on the power button doesn't come on so I'm thinking it might be the power supply.

    I have a Mac Mini and inserted the G5's main(160 Gb) hard drive into an external case to check the content, however the hard drive isn't detected.

    Could the reason the G5 tower doesn't power up be that the system's (main) hard drive failed? Would this cause no power at all?
     
  2. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    #2
    No, if the HDD was bad, then you would see a ? folder icon, you could still hold the N key for Netboot, and you would see a power light. Power supply failure is not terribly uncommon for G5s, particularly early units.

    You could check the current with a metre to see if the PSU is operable, but I would suspect that to be your problem.

    As to why the main HDD doesn't mount in an external enclosure, that could be due to a few problems, not the least of them being the enclosure that you are using, the drive having SMART flags set, etc..

    Either way, if you were to power a dual-G5 with no HDD, you would still see video.
     
  3. crowe-t thread starter macrumors member

    crowe-t

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    #3
    I'm using an OWC Mercury Elite Pro external enclosure.

    Is there a way I can either mount the G5's hard drive or another alternative so I can access it's data?
     
  4. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

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    Feb 6, 2014
    #4
    Hmm... The OWC enclosure should work, although it would help to know exactly what model of Mercury enclosure you own, as they make at least a dozen products under that name.

    Are you certain that you connected everything in a secure manner?

    You can use a generic SATA to USB adapter kit, and they come with a handy power supply unit that plugs directly into a drive, which is useful to determine if it is spinning up under power.

    Does the HDD spin, or make any noise?

    There is always a slight chance that some kind of power surge, or other irregularity, shorted out the system PSU, and also damaged the HDD digital board. It is further possible that it isn;t receiving power through the enclosure.

    The first thing to do, is to find out if your drive is powering on. As I don;t know the exact model of enclosure, I don't know how it is designed, and what kind of power supply is used with it. (3.5" drives can not receive power from the USB or Firewire bus: They require an external power source for +5VDC and +12 VDC.)

    Please elaborate on the enclosure, and post a photo of it, and its PSU, as you are using them. Try running the drive without entirely closing the enclosure, and tell me if you can hear it spinning.
     
  5. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

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    #5
    I received your PM, with the link to the enclosure.

    How can you describe this 'noise'? is it a clicking, humming, or spinning noise?

    If you take off the top of the enclosure, and connect the drive inside, then power the dsrive, and attach it to your system, I want you to do this:

    Place your palm, gently on the top of the drive, while it is (or should be) running.

    Try to sense if it is spinning, which you should be able to lightly feel.

    I use a stethoscope personally, as I am about 60% deaf, when examining drives. I can usually tell by ear exactly what the problems are with a given drive. You can buy one at most drug stores, and for a HDD, a traditional medical stethoscope is better than a mechanical stethoscope (probe).

    It is possible that the drive is not compatible with the enclosure, but OWC do not list any compatibility charts: They merely state to ensure the drive is compatible, which is awfully unhelpful.

    I am guessing that you do not have access to another Mac with SATA-I or SATA-II to check it otherwise, and thus, I sent you a PM with an offer to do datum recovery. Assuming I can recover files, I would make a DMG for you, and place it in a (protected) directory, for you to download.

    This is a difficult diagnostics process, to do remotely, and if you do not have access to equipment to test a drive, you may want to consider having someone, if not me, analyse the drive. It is almost always possible to do recovery, but if the digital/power board is bad, I would need to replace that component.

    You will need to decide how important the datum on it is to you, and to what lengths you want to venture in order to recover it.

    If you have another system of any kind with SATA, even a PC, you could check the drive in that, with a variety of tools. I have systems set up (Linux and Windows) that are also capable of HFS recovery, so that is also an option for you, if you have other systems on hand.

    I could repair your G5 too, but it probably wouldn't be worthwhile in terms of cost--the freight alone would be absurd--compared to buying another one.

    Replacing the PSU on a G5 requires dismantling it, and it is very easy to damage the CPU modules, if you aren't extremely careful. You may wish to locate another G5, and transfer any PCI-X cards, special video cards, and RAM, assuming whatever model you acquire isn't above the specs of your deceased system. You can then keep the old one for parts.

    There is a (small) chance that the power button board could be bad, and you can test that by bridging the correct connectors, essentially manually tripping the power. I'd need to verify what connectors you would want to bridge to check it, and if you have never done any electronics work, you need to be very careful, to avoid further damages, or possible injury, despite the low voltage. (One can never be too careful.)
     
  6. noodle654 macrumors 68020

    noodle654

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    Never Ender
    #6
    The G5 can still boot if there is no hard drive installed. Does the PSU click when you unplug then plug in the power cable? Fans start, etc? Try a PMU reset on the logic board (the small little button) and check the PRAM battery. If nothing, sounds like a dead PSU.

    As for the hard drive, it should power up and be visible. Try another enclosure? If there is no sign of life it could be dead. Like Amestris has said, look for any noise from the drive. As for the PSU it may be better to just find another G5, the cost of a replacement PSU is about he cost of another G5.
     
  7. crowe-t thread starter macrumors member

    crowe-t

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    #7
    I'm looking into either getting another enclosure or having someone check the drive for me. Fortunately I did run a back up so no important data was lost. I would like to retrieve some programs that weren't backed up but it's not too important right now. I'll see what I come up with in the next few days. I may or may not get another G5 but for now I don't need it. Finding a working G5 would be easier and most likely a bit cheaper then fixing the one I have.

    I'll put the drive back in the OWC enclosure tomorrow and check what type of noise it's making.
     
  8. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

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    Feb 6, 2014
    #8
    As the system light does not engage, I doubt resetting the PMU would do anything, but it takes all of thirty seconds, and is worth trying. I would say that is is likely the PSU (90%), or the power button module (9.9%).
     
  9. crowe-t thread starter macrumors member

    crowe-t

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
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    #9
    I put the G5's system Hard Drive into the OWC Mercury Elite Pro enclosure again and this time I opened up Disc Utility and it recognized the drive.

    It only seemed to recognize the G5's HD when I opened it in Disc Utility. The G5's HD is still good.
     
  10. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    #10
    Brill: I thought you had already tried to view it in Disk utility, which is a good first step. It seems that it merely didn't automount.

    You can use DU to make an image of the drive, which I would advise doing while you have the chance, in case the drive has any problems, as a drive attached via USB/Firewire won't report SMART status.
     

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