iMac 27" 2011 DEAD harddrive

Discussion in 'iMac' started by makingmusic, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. makingmusic macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    I was away from my new iMac on Monday and when I came home it was off! I thought that was strange but tried to restart. Wouldn't do anything - then I got the gray screen with Apple and what looked like the firmware upgrade bar. I waited and nothing happened! Finally got it to boot from system disk and verified the drive. Got an error message that in essence said drive couldn't be repaired. Tried to repair 3 or 4 times and nothing. So, I reformatted and restored from TM.

    All is fine now (24 hours later) and disk verifies with no errors. My question is that this computer hit the 30 day return on May 27 and this happened on May 30! I called AppleCare yesterday to have a record of the problem! The guy was surprised I fixed it myself. Can I trust this drive? Should I carry this heavy computer to the Apple Store and try to get a replacement? Thoughts? I've never had this type of drive problem after 30 days and then all is recovered. Yes, I have 3-year AppleCare.
  2. azentropy macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2002
    I'd schedule to take it in if they definitely will replace it. Most likely it will fail again. Better to schedule the replacement then have it fail on you at a bad time.
  3. bokdol macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2002
    did at anypoint the drive make clicking noises?
  4. reclusive46 macrumors 65816


    Apr 14, 2011
    This just start happening on 13" macbook pro. I reinstalled the partition but its not started happening again 2 days later. So I just went and bought an SSD instead. The genius's are unbelievable unhelpful at my local store.
  5. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    NOT a sound - I had a dead MBP a few years back and I heard the clicking. Bad news is that after I sent the post, I went to check on my iMac and it was dead again. This time the repair won't even work. So, back to Apple we go!
  6. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    Definitely try to get them to replace that HD, a finicky drive is something you definitely do not want in an iMac.
  7. qzxyu macrumors member

    May 7, 2011
    Anaheim, CA
    Replace. a 30 day old HD has no reason to even begin to fail.
  8. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    This is my first post from my new computer. The manager at the Texas Apple Store was great and, of course, gave me a new computer in place of my 33 day old computer. It has taken hours for time machine to restore but my current computer looks like the one that died the other day. Let's hope this new computer has a MUCH longer life.
  9. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    It certainly should. No manufacturer can make perfect components ever time, a certain number (hopefully small) will fail, you just got unlucky. Getting unlucky twice in a row would be, well, really unlucky.
  10. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    iMac 27" Second Dead Drive

    If you're still reading this thread you won't believe this. My 2nd iMac is now dead! I set it up last evening from the Time Machine backup and all seemed to be working. I tested that my software would run and verified the hard drive (as I was concerned after the last go round). I left the computer performing a new TM backup last evening and this morning it was dead with a Kernel Panic. I restarted and it seemed to be working. I did notice a weird horizontal dotted line across the entire screen. I took a screen shot and then calibrated the monitor and it went away. Then, as I was opening files, the screen froze. I couldn't get out of the frozen screen so I hit the power button to restart. Guess, what - gray screen, Apple, spinning cogwheel and the firmware upgrade status and then it just shut off. Eventually, got it started from the DVD and after verifying the drive, it couldn't repair and said I needed to reformat. I wasn't going to start all over again, as I've been "playing this game" since Monday evening. I called Apple Care, got a Sr. Technician, and they want to "capture" my computer to find out what is wrong. So, back to the Genius Bar tonight to trade this in for another. Will the 3rd be a charm or should I give up?
  11. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    you may have a bad time machine backup that is killing the hdd's. I would not trust the tm backup..

    did you clone the drive with super duper or carbon copy cloner. or is everything riding on the tm image.
  12. Nightarchaon macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    It's nice to hear I'm not the only mug who got a series of crappy merchandise from apple,

    I bought my 08 MBP , 1st one was doa on the USB ports , the 2nd one died after frying itself because of appalling thermal paste application (not enough on the CPU and to much on the GPU ) , third ones been a good little runner apart from a fan failure at 14months.

    My time capsule is another run of bad quality control/design 1st two 500mb ones fried the PSUs , as did the 1TB , now finally on a 2TB that I put dremelled holes in when I got it home that's run fine.

    Im now looking to buy an iMac, i want a low power consumption , all in one, but apples quality is sorely putting me off (a friend had then last gen iMac and it took him five attempts over 8 months to get one that was not faulty in some way after a few weeks use)

    Apples designers need to take a step back and actually look at the components going in and heat generated , rather than, as I suspect, drawing a pretty picture then shoe-horning components in as an after thought , case in point, iMac HDD location , if you Must keep the iMac the form factor it is now, switch to laptop drives, then you can move them to a removalble bay on the edge of the iMac and the single component MOST LIKLEY TO FAIL can be user replaced easily via a caddie, and there will less of a heat issue.

    Rant over
  13. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    I do have a backup via CrashPlan and have all the data backed up. Would need to install all the software - one by one!
  14. 360player Guest

    Long time MacRumors lurker, first time poster :)
    (love this forum btw - such a bright atmosphere compared to other forums)

    I feel for the OP - I was in your shoes Sunday and Monday.

    I had just bought a brand new 27"/Core-i7/1TB/4GB-RAM iMac Sunday afternoon, luged the heavey thing all the way home and set it up.

    Later that night (about 4 hrs actually) I left it for 20seconds and came back to a grey screen. It looked like it was on its way to sleep or stand by so i left it for a bit cam back and no keystroke or mouse movement would disturb it - so i just guessed it was frozen. Gave it a hard power-cycle and it just came up with the usual start-up sound and Apple logo followed by a blank screen. (argh!)

    Nothing i did would get me any further than this stage - HDD Select, Booting from Install Disk etc. So after my panic subsided I packed it up - booked a Genius Appointment and organised a half-day at work the next day :)P)

    Finally the next day - took it up, and without hesitation got a new one. Turned out I was back there within 24hrs - so they were happy with what I told them about it.

    I guess my post doesnt really offer much advice but I want you to know that this spate of HDD failures isnt a localised thing for you. I just hope my new(er) iMac is one of the sturdy ones.

    Good luck with your problem :) - let us know how you go.
  15. AlphaDogg macrumors 68040


    May 20, 2010
    Boulder, CO
    I have a feeling that there's an issue with whatever company they contracted out to make those proprietary hard drives for the new iMacs (the ones with the 7-pin power connector).
  16. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    Here I am again with computer #3. Here is the plan that I worked out with the Store Manager and my "friend" Aaron at Apple Care. My first two iMacs have been "captured" and are being shipped to a special location for analysis. Although adding your own RAM does not void the warranty, I split the cost with the manager and for $100 let them add the additional RAM so now I have 8 GB of the RAM distributed by Apple.. [Side note - iMac #1 and iMac #2 had different brands!]. The second thing we've done is agreed that I will not use my TM to setup this computer. So, I've turned the system on, am waiting for the Software Updates to install and am supposed to "play" with the programs that are on the system.

    Tomorrow, I call the Apple Care person and we discuss moving data from my TM backup and a strategy to install ALL of my software back on the machine.

    Remember, #1 to 33 days to fail - on pretty much 24/7. Computer #2 took about 12 hours. I'm just hoping that #3 is a charm!

    BTW, manager made no indication that this problem is occurring frequently. Nice guy, but hard to say if he knows more than he is saying.
  17. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    I agree that it could be the proprietary HDD and have nothing to do with my TM backup. But, they have to "blame" something or at least rule out TM. Of course, if #3 doesn't survive, then it is definitely a hardware problem.
  18. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    Glad I have a "partner in crime" I'm assuming you did not use a TM to setup either of your computers - right? I'm also assuming that like me, you are on computer #3. Let me know how it goes. Will be interesting to compare notes.

  19. 360player Guest

    Actually I am lucky enough only to be on my 2nd iMac (mind you its been less than a week), it seems to be going very well.

    This isnt my first Mac - but it IS however my first Mac "desktop solution" so I kind of treated this as a chance to start fresh with files and music. (So, no TM setup)

    In my irrate mood on Sunday night when this happened I searched desperatly for an answer - I did happen to find a few places that suggested a periphial device could have caused the upset in booting.

    Now, this of course didnt apply to me - since I didnt have an external HDD/USB attached to it yet. But since you mentioned the TM and seeing as it was over 30 days, I thought this info may help you.

    Perhaps see if you can find fault with anything you may have plugged into the machine. I personally didnt draw any connection with these things causeing such problem but I was assured this was the cause for a simialar problem in a few older iMacs (when they were first released - back in the day).

    Let me know if thats helped. I pressume either way it will need to be replaced but it could prevent this cycle continuing. :)
  20. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    So my 3rd iMac has been running fine with the 8 GB "Apple" memory. My programs have finally all been reinstalled. Now, do I dare add 8 GB of memory? I am still thinking TM was my problem but... Should I clone my drive first? Was thinking of cloning because of Lion so may not be bad idea?
  21. SandboxGeneral Moderator emeritus


    Sep 8, 2010
    Just skimming over some of the posts here, but are you using a UPS or power conditioner? If not, maybe you should. It is possible that your computer or both had received a spike in power which can corrupt a file system and thus cause some of what you described.

    Bad or inconsistent power can wreak havoc on any electronics, especially computers.

    I don't know if that is what happened to you, but it is a possibility.
  22. makingmusic thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 3, 2008
    Hope you get this message! Looks like I helped Apple by letting them "capture" my two dead iMacs but now my 3rd one that has been running fine - has a recall! UGH!

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