Help! No boot up on Mac Pro after just 12 hours!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by BDV, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. BDV macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #1
    I'm on a used Mac Pro 3.1 (early 2008) here that came with no OS pre-installed. Then did the following steps: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5182238 which I'm not getting any reply so far at all over at Mac Discussions, resulting in a working Snow Leopard and Windows 7 64-bit for 12 hours, and then suddenly no bootup anymore whatsoever. Not on Windows partition, not on Windows install DVD, not on Snow Leopard Partition, not on Snow Leopard install DVD. For error messages/behaviors see link.

    Should probably also mention that by now I've also tried resetting both SMC *AND* PRAM, no change. Tried safe boot, all that happens is a little progress bar on the white booting background, then before it gets to 50%, it's suddenly replaced by the spinning clock-like thing that then just freezes in unresponsiveness just like when trying to boot from SL partition or SL install DVD.

    By now, I'm desperate enough to try the FireWire target mode suggested in your guide: http://guides.macrumors.com/Mac_doesn't_boot , using my old but still working Mac Pro 1.1 (mid-2006) with Tiger and Windows XP Home 32-bit on it. Oh joy, with only a single monitor and keyboard for both Mac Pros!
     
  2. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #2
    Please! All I need is a way to get back into Snow Leopard on this machine. From there, I'll be able to get everything back to working again. But ever since I did format c, there's no visible partitions for SL anymore because all disks that are left are NTFS. And Windows just can't boot or install without being given the proper drives for this hardware which I can't make it see on the SL DVD during Windows install, only if a proper Bootcamp partition is created in SL first.
     
  3. Thraun macrumors regular

    Thraun

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    #3
    You say you bought it used? Off the bat, it sounds like a hardware issue. RAM, hard drive, logic board possibly. If you bought it from a retailer, I'd try and take it back if I could.
     
  4. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    But it used to work fine for several hours (plus the authorized re-seller had it refurbished and gave me a 1-year warranty, of which only 2 weeks or so have passed), until it suddenly choked on some automatic Windows update, Nero, or DirectX. Plus, when I boot into single-user mode and run fsck, it tells me that the hardware is just fine and that it's some rights or partition management issue. Problem is that I need to be able to run Disk Utility on it to fix rights issues, and Disk Utility only works when inside an operating system.

    I've also booted in verbose mode, and the one thing it froze on was the line "DSMOS has arrived". Do you have any idea what that means? Verbose also told me that Snow Leopard obviously loads NTFS drivers automatically...huh, I had no idea!
     
  5. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    Hmmm...the plot seems to be thickening. I've tried to boot the Mac Pro 3.1 from my trusty, old, and well-working Mac Pro 1.1 (mid-2006) using a firewire cable, and although that resulted in just the same freezing as before, when I plugged my monitor back into the Mac Pro 1.1, Disk Utility on the 1.1 meanwhile seems to have auto-diagnosed a graphics/monitor driver conflict on my Mac Pro 3.1.

    And it's true. I've checked the support CD and the Samsung website, and both say that the CD only has the 32-bit version of the monitor driver which is not compatible with any 64-bit OSs. And it just so happens that this 32-bit monitor driver is one of the very last things I'd installed on Win7 64-bit before the ***** hit the van. The website also says that I can't just erase the 32-bit version by installing the 64-bit version from the site on top (how, with no working OS to begin with?), and that I must first de-install the old version of the driver.

    So I guess the question is, how do I de-install a driver from an OS if I can't even boot into any OS because of this very driver?
     
  6. MacUser2525 macrumors 68000

    MacUser2525

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    Canada
    #6

    See if it will allow you to clone your 1,1 install to the 3,1 hard drive that should get you 32bit install onto it, if not do fresh install in the 1,1 machine then move the hard drive into 3,1.
     
  7. BDV, Jul 23, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2013

    BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #7
    An update:

    A friend of mine has made it to run a "live" version of Linux as he calls it on the machine, which basically means that nothing is installed on either of the two internal drives and Linux is run exclusively from RAM.

    All proper diagnosis tools we then used in Linux told us that the internal hardware is in the best physical shape it could ever be, but that obviously somehow the rights management on those internal drives is so seriously messed up that not even Linux hacking tools could fix them, which is why we can only run the "live" version of Linux and not install Linux proper on the drives (or any other OS, for that matter). Within Linux, we can now format and partition the two internal drives in the MacOS HFS+ system all we want (but leaving the original EFI alone, to be on the save side), but we can't fix the rights. We've made it to get the Mac Pro back to factory settings as such that the folder with question mark appears again during boot, but when trying to install Snow Leopard, it still just crashes before even the starry Snow Leopard BG with the language setting appears.

    So next I dared actually calling the Apple support hotline, and describing the boot issues (no boot or install possible with either MacOS or Windows, whether partitions or original install DVDs), they confirmed that this looks like an issue serious enough that it can't be fixed by an end user, that I should bring the machine to a certified Mac (reselling/fixing) place and that with my original invoice dating this month and the seller's (who for over a week has been entirely unavailable via phone, fax, or mail so far) guarantee of 1-year warranty (which would be null and void once I'd open the tower myself), I won't have to pay for the fixing even though this machine was originally built in 2008.
     
  8. thekingofnerds macrumors regular

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    Jun 26, 2013
    #8
    When you boot from the OS X installer do a FULL repartition of the drive, from Disk Utility on the CD, rather than just installing over an existing partition (which it sounds like you've been doing). This will get rid of any existing partition data on the drives and start them from fresh.

    When in disk utility goto Partition, then select "1 partition" as the layout. Click options and make sure you repartition them as GUID.

    If it doesn't install and work correctly after that - it is 100% hardware.
     
  9. BDV, Jul 23, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2013

    BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #9
    As said, I can't even run Disk Utility from the CD. All that happens is a freeze on the boot screen before it's even loaded. Plus, both fsck in single-user mode *AND* Linux diagnosis tools say the hardware is 100% fine on a physical level. It's rights managements that keep anything from accessing the drives for installs or booting functions, although it's possible to check, scan, format, and partition them within Linux.

    I guess I could try to format them again as GUID in Linux tomorrow (currently transferring around 1 TB of data from a number of external drives that appeared dead for years, until my friend resurrected them today by means of an IDE-USB adapter, to the internal HDD of the Mac Pro 1.1 working just fine). Does Snow Leopard even run on GUID? I thought that was only the formatting system for Windows, which even then will only properly install if you give it all the Mac drivers first, such as via Bootcamp.
     
  10. thekingofnerds, Jul 24, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013

    thekingofnerds macrumors regular

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    #10
    GUID is used by all Intel Macs. MBR was used by Windows PCs until Win 7, but GUID is mainly used now with UEFI firmware all over the place.

    I really think that one of the HDs is just bad after seeing this: "it suddenly choked on some automatic Windows update". HDs tend to go when they are under stressful activity (such as a system update, which accesses tons of files).

    As far as "rights managements" - I'm not sure what that is referring to. There's no "rights managements" for locking out a HD from a hardware or firmware level that would prevent it from even opening Disk Utility. Only thing that would cause that is corruption and/or a bad drive.

    The other thing to remember is hard drive diagnostic tools can be really inaccurate. I've seen drives so destroyed they wouldn't even spin-up - but their SMART status said they were great.
     
  11. BDV, Jul 31, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013

    BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #11
    Next update.

    I've brought the Mac Pro 3.1 to an authorized Apple Service Provider in town today. Got a call from them within an hour that it's the CPU that's damaged. They tell me they've already contacted my vendor that gave me the 1-year warranty, but in order for the authorized ASP to start fixing my machine, for some odd reason I need to call my vendor back first. Was automatically placed on hold before anybody answered, and have been on hold for close to 2 hours by now (still am as I'm typing this). But at least now I'm put on hold, rather than just being hung up on within 10 seconds (because they "don't want me to keep waiting any longer"), as I've been for the last 3 weeks. Wonder how the ASP has made it to contact them so fast...

    Does that even seem possible for you guys, a damaged CPU? After I've had a dual-boot system running perfectly fine on it for half a day, with close to 20 re-boots within that time? And even if by the time I've brought it to the service provider, I could at least run both single-user mode and Linux "live" on it?
     
  12. chrfr macrumors 603

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    Jul 11, 2009
    #12
    Sure, the computer is 5 years old. Things break. I wouldn't have ruled out a memory failure but I would presume the Apple Service provider would have tested that.
     
  13. LorenK macrumors 6502

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    Illinois
    #13
    At least the CPUs for the 3,1 are cheap now, so they should be at least willing to replace it.
     
  14. BDV, Jul 31, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013

    BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    No, I mean, is it possible to smoothly run and use single-user mode *AND* Linux with a fully dysfunctional CPU?
     
  15. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #15
    I don't know what's cheap for you, but the ASP just called me again today, saying that both they and the vendor consider a full-fledged replacement of the whole Mac Pro the only reasonable solution "because a CPU replacement would cost 800 Euros".

    Told the guy that after yesterday's call I'd googled for the Mac Pro's E5462 CPU and what came up was within a range of 20-80 Euros. He replied that those would be "cheap Windows CPUs" that couldn't be put into a Mac because those would have "totally different Mac sockets".

    So what I'm left with now is driving back into town to get the machine back, paying 30 Euros for the information that the CPU is borked, and then I'm required to mail the whole tower back to the vendor at my own expenses, including mail insurance.
     
  16. thekingofnerds, Aug 1, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2013

    thekingofnerds macrumors regular

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    #16
    Rofl, you're right on with that.Intel is the only manufacturer for that processor, and it only comes in LGA 771. There is no Mac vs Windows, it's the same processor. Given that response, I'd be shocked if they even diagnosed it - they probably threw a dart at a board to pick something to write down.

    I wouldn't even pay that foolish tech $.10.

    Not sure where you live, but you may want to look into the consumer protection laws. If you live in an area with strong laws, may be worth mentioning that to the Vendor to get off the hook for shipment and diagnosis fees. EU countries have particularly strong laws in this area.
     
  17. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #17
    +1

    You are kind in only calling him a foolish tech.
     
  18. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #18
    Thing is, shipment and diagnosis fees are two different parties. Diagnosis was done by this authorized Apple Service Provider (ASP). He's the one who told me about "cheap Windows CPUs" and "totally different Mac sockets". They're the ones who want 30 Euros from me for telling me it's the CPU, and they're telling me I'm getting off cheap because if I'll want a written statement that it's the CPU, they want twice as much simply for printing a page. I'm not sure where consumer protection laws could get into play here, especially considering that the only warrenty they'll honor is the original one from Apple, and that one ran out in early 2009, although the vendor completely refurbished the Mac with "new" parts.

    The other place is the vendor that I got the Mac from. At least they're telling me by mail now that I'll get shipment back once it'll arrive.
     
  19. thekingofnerds macrumors regular

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    Jun 26, 2013
    #19
    Sorry for the mixup - I was talking about the vendor, as far as laws go, not the ASP.

    If the vendor gave you a warranty and you followed proper procedure for using it, they may have to cover certain fees associated with the warranty (diagnosis, shipping, etc), in addition to the repair itself. Again, it depends how it was written as well as the law of the land.

    Here in the US if a warranty doesn't say something you are usually SoL (some exceptions, like lemon-laws) - but as I mentioned above a lot of countries are toughening up their laws regulating consumer-electronic warranties. Even Apple has been getting their butt kicked in the EU the past couple years.

    That's a very good sign. Are they going to simply swap it out for another unit?
     
  20. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #20
    That's what the vendor's gonna do once they'll have the Mac back. However, I still find it fishy a.) what the ASP said about "cheap Windows CPUs" and "exclusive Mac CPU sockets", b.) that the ASP was able to (or claims they were) reach the vendor by phone within a few minutes when I couldn't do so for three weeks, and c.) that the ASP wants twice as much (60 rather than 30 Euros) if I want a 1-page (1-sentence?) printout of their diagnosis that it's the CPU. And, d.) that the vendor and the ASP are agreeing with each other that it's cheaper to replace the whole Mac than to put in a new CPU because there would be "exclusive Mac CPUs".

    In other words, do I really know what's gonna happen once the Mac is back with the vendor? In any case, tomorrow I'll be calling Apple Support directly in order to ask them whether there's really such a thing as "excusive Mac CPUs" for the Mac Pro or if they'Ve been bullsh*tting me as you guys are saying they are.
     
  21. BDV thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2013
    #21
    Okay, we've got the Mac back from the authorized ASP, and called the official Apple Support line again, where they confirmed what you've told me here: There are no special "PC" or "Mac" CPUs, all that matters is the socket which has to be LGA 771 for the Mac Pro. And an E5462 CPU doesn't cost "800 Euros" in retail, with a two-digit figure much more likely.

    We've called two other authorized ASPs in town, and they quoted similar high-end three-digit prices for the E5462 in retail, claiming the very same thing about "it has to be specifically a Mac CPU", even when I quoted them the official Apple Support line saying that they're identical whether they have a Mac label or not. The first of these two ASPs then replied that the CPU would "need special Apple programming", and even flat-out refused to acknowledge that the Mac Pro 3.1 even runs on the E5462 at 2.8GHz at all, trying to sell me a 3.0 or 3.2GHz over the phone, "starting at a bit over 1,000 Euros a piece".

    Coupled with the fact that the original vendor is trying to blackmail us into an obscure insurance scheme now (or else they say they're not gonna take it back at all) that we'd have to pay and reeks very much like insurance fraud, we've decided that we're not gonna send the Mac back to them and instead try to find a retail Intel Xeon (Core, Nehalem, or Westmere) CPU for the right LGA 771 socket under 200 Euros and have the second ASP we've called today build it in. He seemed a bit nicer and more co-operative, but still he refused to give any guarantee in case we're gonna give him anything without the Apple label on it to put inside the tower, threatening me that "it could melt the whole tower!" because "it's not made by Apple!"

    Another reason why we wanna go that road now is because it would be a cheap way to upgrade to a Mac Pro 4.1 Bloomfield/Gainestown (early 2009), or even Mac Pro 5.1 Bloomfield/Gulftown (mid-2010), simply by putting in the right Intel X58 rather than Intel 5400 inside. Apple Support line said it would be possible even if the CPU doesn't have the official Apple label, as long as it's for the LGA 771 socket.

    Then I'll try to get fax/e-mail confirmation both from Intel *AND* Apple that this new CPU is fully compatible with the Mac Pro 3.1, have the new ASP check all the other hardware inside and then put in the new CPU.

    You guys see any problem with that?
     
  22. MacUser2525 macrumors 68000

    MacUser2525

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    Canada
    #22
    No other than you thinking that you can put in processors that will never work due to being a different socket type, you want a Harpertown socket 771 processor for that machine preferably the 2.8 like you have now or the 3.2ghz if you want to do an upgrade.
     

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