How to get data off 2008 iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ddkkpp, Sep 17, 2015.

  1. ddkkpp macrumors 6502


    May 28, 2011
    My parents 2008 iMac stopped working during a wind storm / power outage a couple weeks ago. It seems to turn on, but the screen flicks off after about 5 seconds. Is there any way to get in to it and access the data without opening it up and extracting the HD?

  2. rigormortis, Sep 17, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2015

    rigormortis macrumors 68000


    Jun 11, 2009
    have you tried target disk mode?

    connect a firewire cable between both computers and hold down the t key during boot
    newer computers use thunderbolt, older macs use firewire

    have you tried an external monitor ?

    do you use file vault in Yosemite on the computer your having issues with?
    file vault will prevent you from using screen sharing

    does the screen just flicker off? or do you feel the computer is still powered on and running?

    reset pram

    reset smc
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    If it's a damaged internal power supply (might be according to the symptoms you describe), the only alternative (short of repairing the power supply) will likely be to open it up and extract the drive, then use an enclosure or USB3/SATA docking station with which to connect it to another Mac to access the data...
  4. ddkkpp thread starter macrumors 6502


    May 28, 2011
    thanks for the replies.

    i've tried resetting the pram and smc - to not avail.

    i feel like the computer is on and running but the screen is off. i will try target disk mode today.

    if that doesn't work and it is power supply, i'll have to open it and extract the HD i guess.

    no i don't think file vault was being used.... (at least i hope not)
  5. CoastalOR macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2015
    Oregon, USA
    If you have to open it up to extract the HD then take a look at the repair instructions at

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