iMac hangs

Discussion in 'iMac' started by kharisma, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. kharisma macrumors newbie

    Aug 9, 2009
    Last year I did a clean install of Snow Leopard (wiped the hard drive, and started with a new OS)

    I am finding that from time to time the system runs incredibly slowly for simple tasks (like selecting a different window). I have checked that I still have enough room on the hard drive (100 GB free space on a 250 GB drive). There is 4 MB RAM (no room for more). The processor is Intel Core 2 Duo 2.16 GHz.

    Just lately, the system has frozen a few times, forcing me to simply turn it off and reboot. It has also been reluctant to let me log in again - I get the initial screen that lists the users, and when I click on my username, the box to allow entry of a password never appears - all the options to sleep/restart/shut down are greyed out, and it just sits there.

    Eventually I do get in, but I am concerned that the day is coming when I can't get in at all.

    What diagnostics or repairs can I run?
    Are there any repairs I should be doing on a regular basis anyway?
  2. eljanitor macrumors 6502


    Feb 10, 2011
    Just sounds like a corrupted system to me. It could be from many things, it's possible that the hard drive is starting to go bad, and needs replacing. Id check the SMART status of the drive to see it its failing SMART tests. Thats the easiest thing to do. You can check that in the system profiler and just select the drive to see if it passed the last SMART test. (see picture) Also something to note is that the controller can still pass SMART testing but have an intermittent failure.

    So it could be a bad controller on the drive, it could be that the motor is going bad, etc etc. It could be bad blocks on the Hard drive as well. Bad blocks don't show up under SMART testing. However there are several programs that you can purchase that check for bad blocks on hard drives.

    So I'd definitely think about repairing whatever software corruption has occurred, and check it for bad blocks as well. Bad blocks usually equal replacing the drive.

    A good tool to monitor your system is: iStat pro.
    You can get the widget here click here

    Hope this helps you.

    Attached Files:

  3. kharisma, Jul 7, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2011

    kharisma thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 9, 2009

    I have checked the hard-drive (SMART) - it says it's ok.
    The temperature of my machine is between 39-49, so that seems fine.

    What about the CPU?
  4. MacHamster68, Jul 8, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2011

    MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    dont rely on the smart test readings
    your iMac is now near 5 years old , and if it is still the original HDD then you are lucky that it is still working at all 5 years are a long time with todays HDD technology some even start giving up after 3 years already
    So do yourself and your iMac a favor change the HDD.
    I mean its the cheapest part inside if you get a 250gb HDD again , but personally i would get a 500GB- 1TB HDD as those are cheap too nowadays (WD caviar black )

    when you are at opening the iMac to change the harddrive give it a good clean , you will be shocked or at least surprised how much dust there is inside after 5 years:eek:

    My guess Mr.Dyson had a iMac and that gave him the idea for his cyclone bagless vacuum cleaners
  5. kharisma thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 9, 2009
    Ahh, you just said the magic words - a bigger hard-drive!! yesss!!! Hopefully that'll fix the problem.

    Is there anything I ought to be doing with the Mac for maintenance? With Windows I was forever having to run the defrag.
  6. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    defragmentation is usually only a windows thing

    Mac OS-X is pretty good at defragging its operating system on its own (unless the hard drive has filled up and forced it to write into a fragmented state) so generally we do not have to worry about defragging the System and Applications folders.:D
  7. kharisma thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 9, 2009
    I realise defrag is for Windows - I have had a Mac for more than 5 years now. I only cited defrag as an example of on-going maintenance - and I had to use a Windows example, because I don't know of one for the Mac.

    The question is "Is there anything I ought to be doing with the Mac for maintenance?"
  8. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    there are tools out there , idefrag for example

    onyx is another tool i like for general cleaning

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