Mac mini server (Mid 2010) dead logic board?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by UserName, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. UserName macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    I recently bought a Mac mini server with a faulty disk (bottom one) and a broken SATA cable. I replaced the top disk with an SSD and put the working one in the bottom tray without the SATA connector (for now at least)..

    Problem is... I can get the mini to boot from the SSD which has a Windows 8.1 install on it, but cannot get it to boot it from a working Yosemite install on an external drive. The boot just hangs at 50% of the progress bar.

    I've also tried to run a USB install of Mavericks and the internet recovery (cmd+r) but all I get is the Apple logo and the spinning wheel.

    Could the logic board be fried or damaged? The mini chimes normally and everything seems to be in good working order... and as I said Windows runs just fine. I'm lost!!!

    Please help!!! ;)
     
  2. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

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    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #2
    Will Yosemite and Mavericks run on a 2010 mini?
     
  3. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #3
    Yes, my mid 2010 server mini runs Yosemite fine.
     
  4. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #4
    Internet Recovery on a MacMini Mid 2010 requires EFI Firmware v1.5:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1479

    However, you need to be running 10.7.2 to install the firmware.
     
  5. UserName thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    #5
    Update:
    I swapped the internal SSD (with the working Windows installation) with another SSD with Yosemite on it. Again... all I get is the Apple logo and the spinning wheel... :(

    Booted the mini in verbose mode and it gets stuck at "Resetting IOCatalogue". What else can I try?
     
  6. Agent47 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2014
    #6
    Try an SMC and PRAM reset.

    Do a search on Google and you'll see this is a common issue with the Hackintosh community; the root cause seems to revolve around either a hardware fault or disk permissions (which using a fresh install would get around). Do you have an OSX drive you can try with something other than 10.10? The EFI of this machine may not have been updated to support internet recovery.
     
  7. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #7
    I've already tried the SMC and PRAM reset with no success :(

    I've managed to get a hold of a Lion USB installer (Apple original) but again, the system hangs at the Apple logo with the spinning wheel.

    Could the problem be caused by a faulty SATA cable by any chance?

    The fact that the mini is booting into Windows makes me think that the logic board is not the culprit... Am I wrong?

    Thank you all for your replies :)
     
  8. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #8
    If possible, take it back down to a minimum RAM configuration - try 2GB - painful but worth a try.

    I'm guessing, of course.
     
  9. UserName thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    #9

    My mini comes with 2 x 4GB sticks (Samsung 4GB 2Rx8 PC3-8500S).. Will try your solution and report back.

    Thank you :)
     
  10. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #10

    Nope... It didn't work :(
     
  11. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030

    Yebubbleman

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    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #11
    1. Can you boot ANY version of OS X?

    1a. How about the version of Snow Leopard Server that originally came pre-loaded?

    2. Can you boot to a self-contained USB installer for Lion, Mountain Lion, Mavericks, or Yosemite? This would effectively narrow out any SATA cable/port issues. This would also effectively help you to answer the first question I ask here.

    3. Have you tried running the Apple Server Diagnostics that come with that machine? (This replaces both Apple Hardware Diagnostics and Apple Server Diagnostics for that machine; however you can still run both of those on this machine as though you had the non-server model; it will still work)

    4. When you boot Windows 8.1, does it work flawlessly? Or do you have any issues?
     
  12. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #12

    I bought the mini second hand and it didn't come with the original disks. As I said earlier, I also tried to run Yosemite from an external enclosure... Same result.

    Yes windows runs fine (minus a couple of missing bootcamp drivers., eg: coprocessor, smbuscontroller, bluetooth and FireWire)

    Thank you for your reply :)
     
  13. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030

    Yebubbleman

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    Location:
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    #13
    I don't mean running a drive that has a Yosemite install on it. I mean running a self-contained USB drive installer for Yosemite. If you can't do that, then you really have a problem. You can probably call Apple and at least request a copy of the diagnostics disk for machine for $30. Though, honestly, I'd just take it to a Genius Bar where the diagnostics are free. They'll tell you what's wrong with it and then you can make up your mind on where to go from there in terms of getting the machine working or scrapping it.
     
  14. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #14

    I guess I could still use it as a windows machine.... But that's not the reason why I bought it.... I want OSX on it!!! LOL :)

    Could OSX be a bit less tolerant than windows when running on a slightly defective machine?

    Thank you again ;)
     
  15. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030

    Yebubbleman

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    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #15
    Well, you say your troubles are at the boot screen, yeah?

    Then it's totally possible as OS X is dependent on EFI where Windows uses BIOS emulation, even with Windows 8.1. It's possible OS X is freaking out somewhere in firmware. Not sure though. I'm assuming you attempted to boot to OS X in verbose mode and you looked at where it got stalled? Again, you should just take it into the Apple Store and have them run the diagnostics that you don't have (because you didn't get any media with the purchase of that machine).
     
  16. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #16

    Yeah, the mini gets stuck at "resetting IOCatalogue"
     
  17. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #17
    Just a thought... Could it be possible that the mini is freaking out because there's only one SATA connector in there instead of two?
     
  18. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    Oct 17, 2014
    #18
    My 2010 has only one due to the previous owner breaking the connector off the logic bard, and it still works fine.
     
  19. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #19

    Thank you redheeler... Good to know :)
     
  20. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
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    #20
    Just another wild guess -

    One of the first things that seems to occur after the resettingIOCatalog is some kind of bluetooth transition.

    I would suggest using a genuine Apple USB keyboard & mouse, and turning off any bluetooth mice or keyboards you may have.

    If that doesn't help, I wonder if the bluetooth/wireless card is bad or not seated correctly or the interface cable for it is not connected correctly or torn. Way back when, badly seated airport cards would cause a kernel panic part way thru startup.

    If you've not taken one of these apart before, there are connectors that are easily damaged. Most of them lift straight up.

    Take a look here for help:

    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Mac+Mini+Mid+2010+AirPort-Bluetooth+Board+Replacement/6402
     
  21. UserName thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2004
    #21

    Thank you MacTech68....

    Will definitely look into it.... I also noticed that FireWire is not working... my bootable OSX disk in an external FireWire enclosure doesn't show up when I press "option" at boot.

    This mini is looking more and more like an expensive paperweight :(
     
  22. UserName thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    #22
    Update:

    In the "Mac mini mid 2010 Apple Technician Guide" I found a photo of the logic board and noticed that on mine there's a missing piece of black plastic (see picture).

    Does anybody know what it is?

    Could it be the reason why the mini won't boot?

    Thank you... I really appreciate your help :)

    [​IMG]
     
  23. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    #23
    The photo you are looking at may be of a preproduction or unfinished board. I don't know of any that do have a slot there (mine certainly doesn't) or what it would be used for.
     
  24. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    Mar 16, 2008
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    #24
    Looks like a debug connector (LPC+SPI Debug Connector 30 pin). These are fitted during development to allow monitoring of key data to check timing and other parameters.

    Production machines have the physical connector omitted. Quite normal on late Macs.
     
  25. UserName thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    #25

    That's quite reassuring :) On my board I can see the exposed contacts and when I saw the above picture, I nearly freaked out :)

    I thought it was a microchip of some sort.

    I feel much better now.... Thank you for your replies..

    Cheers :)
     

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