Help with El Capitan fresh install (black screen)

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by Grasbak, Feb 22, 2018.

  1. Grasbak macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    i am trying to help a friend clean install his 2008 imac with el captian.

    He had upgraded to el capitan a while ago, but for a while now he could only boot in safe mode.

    As I have performed a number of fresh installs on other machines, so I thought "no problem". I created a bootable usb with el captian on. Booted up with it, wiped the hard disk, then ran the installation. Seemed to run ok, but when complete it just hangs on a black screen - can't see a mouse cursor. Tried twice, same result.

    Any ideas?

    Only other thing i noticed was when i booted up with the USB, the screen had grey circles on it (in the background, large, like a ripple in water), wondered if that signified anything?
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    Hard drive failure?
    Graphics failure?

    Do you have an EXERNAL drive that's bootable to the finder, that you could connect to his Mac?
    If not, can you create one?

    You want to see if you can boot his iMac "externally" (i.e., not using the internal drive at all), and "get to the finder" without problems.

    That will rule out any other hardware problems.

    Another path that might work:
    1. Install a clean copy of El Cap to an EXTERNAL DRIVE
    2. Use CarbonCopyCloner to clone that "fresh install" to the iMac's internal hard drive...
     
  3. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
  4. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #4
    Are you sure that you're actually booting into "safe mode" (this should "get you to the finder") and NOT into recovery mode (which gets you to the installer, disk utility, etc.)?

    IF it will boot into safe mode -- but NOT "boot into his regular account" -- what that suggests to me is this:

    - Mac is ok, hardware-wise (other than the hard drive).
    - Hard drive is probably ok, hardware wise (because it boots into safe mode)
    - Basic OS install is ok (again, it boots into safe mode).

    These things can be a pain to diagnose.

    SOMETHING TO TRY:
    This "won't hurt anything", and can be easily removed later on.

    1. Boot up in safe mode and log in.
    2. Open the users & groups preference pane.
    3. Choose to create a NEW account. MAKE SURE you give it administrative privileges.
    4. Now, log out of the existing account and INTO the "new" account.
    5. This will now be your "test account" (can be deleted later)
    6. Shut down, reboot, and see if you can "get to" the new account without problems.
    7. Can you do this?
     
  5. Grasbak, Feb 24, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018

    Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    firstly - thanks for helping

    I can boot into safe mode. Tried the above, boot gets stuck just under 1/2 way through.

    (I had wiped the hard drive and re-installed El Capitan)

    Just trying to boot from my old El Capitan "superduper" back up. slow going as usb2. this seems to have stopped about a 1/4 through the boot process....
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    If you can't boot from an external drive that YOU KNOW IS BOOTABLE, my guess is that some other hardware (other than the drive) has failed inside.

    It could be video-related.

    I'd tell your friend that it's probably time to be shopping for a new Mac...
     
  7. Grasbak, Feb 24, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018

    Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    can't say for sure it is bootable - it was set up that way in super duper but never had cause to check it. So am working to the assumption it would.

    have been trying to run diagnostics, but can't seem to get it to run. holding down d on startup doesn't work. oh wait - using original discs its running
    --- Post Merged, Feb 24, 2018 ---
    short hardware test said no issue
     
  8. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
  9. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    tried installing El Capitan from fresh again - same result. Boots to a black screen, but you can boot into safe mode.
     
  10. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #10
    Well... at this point... I'd try a DIFFERENT version of the OS.

    You wrote above:
    "oh wait - using original discs its running"

    What are "the original discs"?
    Are you referring to the install DVDs that came with it?

    If they work -- when nothing else does -- why don't you try reinstalling [the original] OS from them?

    When one method works and another doesn't -- use the method THAT WORKS...
     
  11. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    i have the original discs that came with the iMac, and a snow leopard dvd

    when using the original discs or snow leopard, i boot up holding c or shift - they all end up at black screen :(
     
  12. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #12
    If nothing works... as I mentioned in reply 6 above... perhaps it's time for your friend to start looking for a replacement...
     
  13. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    yep - looks that way. thanks again for the help.
     
  14. Grasbak thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    one last question - when first wiped the hard drive i formatted at the top level in disk utility rather than the 2nd level (if that makes sense). Would that have caused any issue?
     

Share This Page

13 February 22, 2018