#@!$% I think my iMac's HD is dying

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by MrHappyMonkey, Aug 27, 2004.

  1. MrHappyMonkey macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2003
    I have a 1.25Ghz 17" iMac with an 80gb Hitachi HD that sounds like its dying. I restarted it after quite a few hours of being on due to slowness. It seems to be making this churning sound during start up. I’m pretty sure it’s the HD that’s making the sound. I'm trying to use the hardware test CD, but I have no way of opening the CD drive because it's still on the grey screen with the apple logo trying to boot up. I still have my 1 year Apple Care warrenty so they should be able to fix this. How long will I be without my mac? This is kind of a bummer.


    just got off the phone with Apple. I guess I'm past my 90 days of free phone support so I guess I'll have to rely on you guys for help. I was able to boot into the hardware test. It ran without error. I really would like to be able to boot into something where I can transfer my files onto another HD. I have a 5 gig iPod, but I need more storage than that. I have a home network with other PCs on it too. I have a bootable CD that has OS 9.x on it. Can I boot from OS9 and grab my files off of my HD? If not, what can I use? I tried booting up the iMac and its slowly starting up. It is now at the screen that says "waiting for Apache server" with the blue background. Hopefully that means it'll start up eventually...
  2. musicpyrite macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Cape Cod
    Well if your iPod does not have enough space, your iMac has a DVD and CD burner. Head down to wal-mart or something and pick up a few blank CDs and/or DVDS, burn all your stuff to them. Of course if you can afford it try to get an external HD. If you have another computer in your house, try to network them together, and transfer the files that way.

    Once you've backed up your stuff, all I can say is keep using your computer till the HD dies, then if it's still under warrantee, take it to an Apple store, and have them fix it.
  3. titaniumducky macrumors 6502a


    Nov 22, 2003
    It should startup eventually from what you describe. If it does, you can probably find somewhere to backup crucial data. Try these if it never boots up:

    1. If you have another Mac, boot into Target Disk Mode by holding 't' at startup after connecting the two by firewire

    2. Boot into OS 9 and backup the files

    3. Install OS X onto your iPod then boot off it. Then backup your stuff.

    That's basically all I can think of. If you're hard drive dies before you can backup your important stuff, there's not really much you can do. Act as quickly as possible.
  4. phillymjs macrumors regular

    Jul 18, 2002
    Shut it off, and back it up ASAP

    First, get a FireWire hard drive from Other World Computing (macsales.com) or your preferred hardware vendor. Then, shut your iMac down until it arrives unless absolutely necessary. You don't know how much life that drive has left in it, and you don't want to squander it by using the computer before your data can be backed up.

    Once you get your hands on the external drive, attach it to your iMac, and use Carbon Copy Cloner (bombich.com) to clone the dying drive to the external while you still can.

    Then replace the internal drive or have it replaced by someone else, boot from the external drive, and clone it back to the new internal drive.

    That's about the most painless, albeit not the cheapest, way to solve your problem and minimize data loss and the time you'll spend reinstalling all your apps.

  5. AliensAreFuzzy macrumors 68000


    May 30, 2004
    Madison, WI
    First off, Make sure you back it up. Like someone else said, if there is another computer with a firewire port in your house, mac or PC, hold down "t" when starting up and it will enable your iMac as a firewire hard drive. Then make connect the two and get all of you important files onto the good HD. And if you bought this iMac within the past year, you will still have free repairs, just not phone suppport. If you have an Apple Store nearby, bring it there, if not go to the nearest Apple Authorized Service Provider (can be found here) And they can repair it, free of charge if you bought it within a year.
  6. MrHappyMonkey thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2003
    alright I hooked the iMac up to my PC via firewire. Device manager shows the iMac as a SBP2 Compliant IEEE 1394 device, but does not have a proper driver for it (there is a yellow '!' symbol by the name). Is there a driver that I need to get this running?
  7. MrHappyMonkey thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2003
    alright i'm now just going to let it boot normally and hope that it boots into OS X and grab the files off the network. I don't think the firewire target mode wants to work. I've also tried to boot into "safe mode" by holding down SHIFT but it does not do anything. Is there any other type of slimmed-down OS or boot disk that I can load onto it to try to recover my files? Maybe some type of linux or something?

Share This Page