iMac won't boot, some basic questions re new hard drive.

Discussion in 'iMac' started by andytw, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. andytw macrumors newbie

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    Aug 27, 2014
    #1
    Hi,

    I am helping someone out. I am competent but little experience with Mac.
    The machine is an iMac 20" A1224 EMC2133.
    It does not boot and just sits at "Folder and ?".
    The owner tells me it has been very slow and playing up generally for some time.
    I suspect the hard drive may now be dead or just possibly it is a cable issue.
    The owner says she does not have original install CDs and I do not think I can download and burn any Mac OS ISO images.

    Is there a recognised procedure if a hard drive fails totally and there are no install CD's.

    Any comments welcome.

    andytw
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #2
    That does sound a lot like a dead hard drive. You can create a 10.7 or newer restore USB drive and boot from that.
     
  3. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Aha ..Ok thanks. Can I do this outside of Mac environment e.g. on Windows as I obviously do not have access to a Mac until it is fixed.

    Can the newly created USB drive be used to re-install onto a new hard drive once it is replaced ? Are there license requirements ?
    If the owner does not have the supplied CD/DVD's then I doubt she has supplied licenses.

    Thanks

    andytw
     
  4. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #4
    As long as you have purchased Mac OS X 10.7 or newer via the Mac App Store, you are allowed to run the purchased version of Mac OS X that you downloaded from the Mac App Store without any license restrictions.
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #5
    I agree that sounds like a bad drive. Could also be a bad cable, but that is much less common.

    From here it looks like that machine will run the newest version of OS X Mavericks, which is free.

    At this point there are two ways to get Mavericks setup on there.

    He can go to the Apple Store online here and for $19 buy the retail CD of Snow Leopard and leave it at that. Or once Snow Leopard is installed and updated, go to the App Store then buy Mavericks and install it over top of Snow Leopard.

    Or get to a friends Mac and use his AppleID to "purchase" Mavericks and download it, then use this free utility with a 8GB USB key to make an installer.

    Either the CD or USB installer work pretty much the same way. Just insert then option key boot to the install media and use Disk Utility to erase the new disk to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format. Then quit Disk Util and install the OS.

    No way to legally get this done from a PC.
     
  6. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #6
    All good info, many thanks.

    I think a straight purchase of Snow Leopard will suit us. I expected the cost to be MUCH higher.

    I currently have the machine booted with an Ubuntu Live CD. There is no sign of the hard drive. Will open up tomorrow and do an inspection and reseat of the disk cables and look to getting a replacement. Am I right to presume the drive is NOT a proprietary Apple part ?

    andytw
     
  7. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    #7
    The hard drives in those iMacs is a standard desktop sized 3.5" SATA hard drive.
     
  8. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #8
    Correct.... it is just a standard desktop SATA drive.
     
  9. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    Hi,

    I have located a good drive and ordered a Snow Leopard DVD. Am I right to understand that Snow Leopard is the latest release I can buy on DVD ? Later releases being only suitable for upgrades after download ?

    I fitted the old drive to a USB caddy and it spun up and then down and then up again...looks pretty final.

    andytw
     
  10. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #10
    10.6.3 Snow Leopard is the last OS X DVD release.
     
  11. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #11
    Here is the repair guide
    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/iMac+Intel+20-Inch+EMC+2133+and+2210+Hard+Drive+Replacement/1008

    Your machine uses a stick-on temperature sensor, which is easy to transfer to the new drive.

    A note for owners of newer models which use a jumper cable from jumpers on the hard drive to the motherboard for temperature data, you need to either get the same brand of hard drive as the original (Seagate, Western Digital or Hitachi) or you need to google up the instructions to rewire the jumper cable for proper operation.
     
  12. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #12
    This machine is the absolute bare minimum require to run Mavericks, unless he really needs the new operating system he should leave it at Snow Leopard, or Lion if he wants to be more or less, supported, but then he'll be another $20 down.

    Just cause something is free, doesn't mean you should take it.
     
  13. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #13
    Snow Leopard is no longer receiving security updates. Mavericks has much better memory management and is likely to have better performance than Lion. No reason not to use it.

    If you have something constructive to add, please do so. Otherwise keep your condescending remarks to yourself.
     
  14. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    So...I have ordered Snow Leopard, as I need DVD's. But as Snow Leopard is 10.6 am I going to have license issues ?

    andytw
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #15
    What kind of licensing issue are you concerned about?

    You are all legal since you paid for the OS and beyond that OS X does not have any kind of licensing checking/verification anyway.
     
  16. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16

    OK thanks..sounds good to me. My concern was that I was going get the DVDs in the post, then start an install only to be asked for 'The original license key supplied with the machine'. If I don't need one then, great, just trying to stay ahead.
    New disk is installed and I am currently loading Ubuntu onto it.

    andytw
     
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #17
    Oh no... you'll be good. OS X does not use license keys like that.

    Later upgrade versions like Lion 10.7 and up do require an AppleiD that was used for the purchase to redownload the OS.

    Glad you got up and running. :)
     
  18. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #18
    Clearly you haven't put Mavericks on an old machine, it runs like a dog.

    Keep your Fanboy attitudes to yourself, this is a practical suggestion to help somebody with limited resources.
     
  19. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #19
    Actually I have. I installed on my daughter's 2008 MBP with a 5400RPM hard drive and 4GB of RAM and it worked perfectly.

    My suggestion is to utilize a free upgrade to overcome the issue of SL no longer receiving security updates versus paying $20 for Lion (resources?). If you disagree that just fine, but there is no need for your condescension or name calling.
     
  20. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #20
    Suggesting that Mavericks is still a work in progress is not "name-calling", your suggesting that I'm being condescending is. I don't think Mavericks is for everybody, and trying to patch together every aging Mac out there to run it, is counter productive, in my opinion.

    Two of my colleagues are still sorting out Mavericks issues on newer machines than your daughter's, and two others have been hobbled by Mountain Lion issues, that will only be solved when they decide to spend a few hundred dollars on Application upgrades, which they are reticent to do.
     
  21. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #21
    My comment was directed at your "fanboy attitude" comment. Like I said, plenty of room for legitimate disagreement based on different experiences without the name calling.
     
  22. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #22
    You may recall that was in response to your quote:

    "If you have something constructive to add, please do so. Otherwise keep your condescending remarks to yourself."

    Which is a variant of the old biddie comment "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all", and pretty much the fanboy mantra.

    In any event, I'll retract that and I hope the OP succeeds in his endeavor.
     
  23. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 27, 2014
    #23
    Well..what a nightmare this turned out to be !

    Original failed disk was a 250Gb WD WD2500AAJS

    I fitted a Maxtor 300Gb DiamondMax 6V300F0 (because we had it)

    While waiting for Snow Leopard DVD to turn up I installed Ubuntu Linux on the iMac with the new drive. All fine, installed and ran OK.

    Now the OS X story...

    Snow Leopard DVD turned up booted OK but no hard drive displayed to install on. Disk Utility would show the drive but I was not able to do anything sensible with it. Re-partition would just hang and time out with POSIX message. Does look like faulty disk but remember Linux went on OK...Mmmm ?

    Much reading of forums and threads and re-trying now ensued. Many hours.

    Removed the hard drive and installed it in a USB caddy. Disk Utility now allows me to do anything with it so partitioned it up and did an SL install in 30 mins. Re-boots of the USB attached drive fine, every time....no issues at all except that the drive is now outside of the machine !
    Removed it from the caddy and re-installed it as a SATA drive. Wont boot, disk utility still problematic, so looks like a cable or MB issue...possibly.

    I found an 80Gb Seagate Barracuda drive and installed that internally. Disk Utility fine, Snow Leopard install fine, re-boot fine, so this proves the cable and MB.

    Summary at the moment, Snow Leopard or the iMac hardware does not like the 300Gb Maxtor drive when it is fitted internally as a SATA drive, but the drive itself is OK.

    I am now looking for another drive of 250Gb or so capacity.

    andytw
     
  24. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

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    #24
    OP wrote above:
    [[ Removed the hard drive and installed it in a USB caddy. Disk Utility now allows me to do anything with it so partitioned it up and did an SL install in 30 mins. Re-boots of the USB attached drive fine, every time....no issues at all except that the drive is now outside of the machine ! ]]

    There is your solution, in front of you.

    It's an older iMac (one of the "white" Intel iMacs, is this correct?).

    IF....
    - the user wants to continue to use the iMac, and
    IF
    - you can't get it to boot using the internal connections
    BUT
    - if it will boot and run from from an external drive,
    THEN
    - why not just keep using it that way?

    Go with "what works", rather than keep fighting against things that don't...
     
  25. andytw thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 27, 2014
    #25
    Finally there...I fitted a Seagate 300Gb ST3300831AS internally. Partitioned OK, SL installed OK, boots fine and works fine. It is only SATA1 but I don't think there will be much in it for normal internet useage.
    I will pass it back to the owner tomorrow.

    Thanks everyone for all your help.

    andytw
     

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