Mac Mini (Intel Core Duo, model A1176) does not accept keyboard input on boot

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by phaedrys, Dec 22, 2010.

  1. phaedrys macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    #1
    I have an Intel Mac mini (purchased in 2005 or 2006) with a fresh install of OS X Leopard on it. I recently changed the Startup Disk in the OS X system preferences to be the CD/DVD drive, and everything has gone downhill since there.

    I inserted a CD and attempted to boot from it right after changing this setting. I noticed the CD drive spun up the disk, but after waiting several seconds a black screen appeared, saying "No bootable device — insert boot disk and press any key". There were two problems here: first, the CD never ejected from the computer, and second, there was no response to any key press.

    After restarting and shutting down a few times I got the Mac to spit out the CD somehow. I restarted, inserted the same OS X Leopard disk used to install the operating system earlier that day, and got the same "No bootable device" error.

    So, there seem to be two (possibly-related?) problems here: the Mac is not taking any keyboard input, and will not boot from even valid, definitely working CDs or DVDs.

    For the keyboard input: I've tried holding down, tapping, and intermittently holding the C, X, D, T, and Option keys (suggested in ##mac last night) during the initial boot, with both an Apple aluminum keyboard (which is working fine as I type this) and an older wireless USB keyboard. I have plugged each keyboard (on separate occasions) into each of the 3 USB slots, without any effect.

    For the boot: Booting headless made no difference, nor did the insertion of a Debian CD, Ubuntu CD, OS X Leopard DVD, or Tiger DVD.

    Has anyone experienced either of these problems before? Could they be linked, since both appeared after messing with the Mac's startup disk? I have made no hardware modifications—I haven't opened the case at all, in fact—since I got the Mini. I'm thinking about taking out the Mac's hard drive, wiping it, and then trying to boot… any ideas?
     
  2. ADent macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    #2
    What keyboard are you using? If an Apple one it may be the problem - early wired keyboards dont' work until later in the boot process.

    From: http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=12260536&#12260536

    also
     
  3. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #3
    Do you mean to imply that this has actually been fixed for later keyboards? I have this issue for my iMac and an Alu KB. In that case, even one of my Logitech keyboards doesn't solve the problem, only the old white USB KB seems to work. (or the remote or mouse).

    EDIT: The model number of the current model KB matches mine: MB110LL/A, perhaps you meant early Macs with an Alu KB.

    B
     
  4. phaedrys thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    #4
    That may be it.. I've tried with a wireless USB keyboard made for PCs as well, but not a wired one.

    The Apple Remote solution would be great, but I don't think I have the one that came with this Mac. Could I use the one that came with my iMac, or are these remotes paired to a specific machine only?
     
  5. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

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    New England
    #5
    They are generic until you specifically pair them.

    B
     
  6. kilowattradio macrumors regular

    kilowattradio

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #6
    With A1176 Mac Mini you must use a PC compatable keyboard with USB. I just sold my A1176 and had a apple keyboard, but if I wanted to use boot options from the keyboard I would plug in my Dell PC keyboard.
    :mad:
     
  7. phaedrys thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    #7
    Yep, the Apple aluminium keyboard was the problem. I had the exact model ADent mentioned (A1243), so I tried holding Option during boot with a wired USB keyboard and it worked fine.

    I still have a boot issue, though — I can boot into OS X fine, but whenever I try to boot from a CD, my Mac ejects it. I tried reinserting the CD while on the boot selection screen, but nothing showed up.
     
  8. balamw, Dec 22, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010

    balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #8
    SuperDrives can be finicky. Have you tried multiple different discs?

    Just for kicks reset your PRAM/NVRAM and SMC before you give up.

    EDIT: Rats, according to Wiki http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Keyboard A1243 is the current model. :(

    B
     
  9. phaedrys thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    #9
    Yeah, I've used the OS X Leopard DVD and two Linux (burned for i386 architecture) install CDs. I reset the PRAM and heard the Apple boot sound for the first time in a while, but it didn't have any effect on the CD boot problem.
     
  10. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #10
    Since this is a Core Duo box, do you know if it has the upgraded firmware? (Boot Camp required a firmware upgrade which affected the startup process). I'm not sure if Software Update shows this or not. Still Leopard should boot, so like the PRAM zap it probably won't fix it, but couldn't hurt.

    B
     
  11. phaedrys thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Dec 22, 2010
    #11
    I downloaded the update again (EFI update, which is related to the bootloader IIRC) but it said on launch that my machine did not need the upgrade. I'm assuming that means it has already been installed.
     
  12. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    New England
    #12
    You could always try rEFIt http://refit.sf.net

    B
     
  13. phaedrys thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    #13
    Just tried it — the Mac still ejects every CD during boot, and if I re-insert the disc while at the rEFIt menu it isn't displayed.

    Other attempts from today:
    - Reset SMC
    - Plugged in an external CD drive. I get the same problem as with the Mac's internal one — the CD spins up for some seconds — except it doesn't eject the disk.
     

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