Mac Mini stuck at loading screen, please help

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by muffiee, May 8, 2010.

  1. muffiee macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #1
    Hi guys i have a problem.

    I booted up my Mac Mini last monday to find for some reason it is stuck in that loading screen which displays a grey background, the apple logo and a round loading swirly sign.

    I have tried running disc utility and trying to repair it but it dosent detect any errors, i also tried clearing the PRAM according to Resetting your Mac's PRAM and NVRAM and still no joy.

    Ive done a total reinstall of OSX and went through an hour and a half of erasing and reinstalling osx from its supplied discs, however still it wont get past the loading screen. I've used a usb hard drive aswell and tried installing osx onto that to see if it was a hard drive error but it still gets stuck at the same loading screen.

    Strange thing is i can access safe mode without a problem

    I have done numerouse hours of searching the web without any luck to a cure to my specific problem, so am posting this as a last attempt to see if any of the more technology minded guys out there know of or can help me work through a solution, if you could i'd be eternally greatful as i use my mac mini quite alot.

    Specs are Mac Mini 1.66GHZ intel duo core 2, 1gb ram, 10.6 OSX (upgraded from 10.5) 100gb hard drive

    I have also started up in Verbose mode and got alot of info that i dont really understand, ive attached screen shots of where the loading screen gets stuck in verbose upon 4 attempts at booting up the mini.

    Thanks in anticipation of your help

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  2. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #2
    To be clear, the Mini boots from the Installer DVD just fine? If so, then there's nothing wrong with the computer, but there could be something wrong with the hard drive. Do you have an external Firewire (or USB) hard drive that you can use to install the OS and see if you can boot from it? (FW is much better if you have it.) If so, connect the drive and boot from your Installer DVD and after selecting English, launch Disk Utilities from the menu. I'd do a disk repair of your internal first and if it comes back with no problems, I'd then go ahead and initialize the external drive (make sure you set it for GUID partition table) and install the OS onto that external drive. When done, reboot while holding the Option key, then select the external drive when prompted for a boot volume.
     
  3. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #3
    Hi thanks for the comments, yes the installer dvd boots just fine and as i stated in my first post i've already sucessfully installed osx onto a usb hard drive to see if it was the mac mini's internal hard drive that was at fault but after booting it hangs at the same place the mac mini's hard drive hangs at.

    To give a better idea where it hangs i've uploaded a 720p video to youtube of what happens the moment i turn my mini on (in verbose mode).
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3o7xxMAlE4
     
  4. calderone macrumors 68040

    calderone

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle
    #5
    From where it is hanging, it may be a problem with your Airport card. So I would also recommend doing a Hardware test as linked above.

    EDIT: I see you did a Safe Boot, it could be a number of things causing the problem. See this KB:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1564
     
  5. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #6
    Already tried with no results, given the verbose mode readings im thinking maybe it is the airport card as it seems to hang around a command for it
     
  6. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #7

    Thanks but it didnt detect any problems, is there any way i can disable the airport card? i tried doing it in terminal following the guide here http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20031206194417678
    But it just said "interface en1 does not exist"
     
  7. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #8
    Did you see this comment at the end of the tip:

    Enable and disable Airport from the command line
    Authored by: kckal on Thu, Jun 25 2009 at 8:35AM PDT
    ...this is out of date
    --------------------------------->
    this works on leopard:
    networksetup -setairportpower off
    networksetup -setairportpower on​
     
  8. calderone macrumors 68040

    calderone

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle
    #9
    Even if you disable it, the kext is still loaded. I suppose if the problem is the airport being on this could solve it, or at least let you boot.

    This would be the same as turning it off in Network Preferences, so no need for a command.

    To add to the above, that command is incorrect (at least for Snow Leopard), setairportpower requires a device name, so it should be:

    Code:
    networksetup -setairportpower airport off
    See if turning it off helps. If it doesn't, I think you should focus on isolating any 3rd party kexts and launch daemons.
     
  9. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #10
    Thanks for the advice guys, after reinstalling the os a few times earlier today it appears i have tiger running at the moment as i have a 10.6 disc but used the origional cd's that came with the mini when reinstalling, so the command line was a little different

    Apparently for 10.4 tiger the line is
    /System/Library/CoreServices/RemoteManagement/ARDAgent.app/Contents/Support/networksetup -setairportpower off

    However when i tried using this it came up with the following error:
    cp: /library/preferences/systemconfiguration/preferences.plist.old: permission denied
    Wireless is not available
    **error wireless is not currently available on this machine.


    I looked in "system preferences - network" for the ability to disable airport but all it showed was "built-in ethernet" and in network port configurations there was no way to turn airport off other than to just untick ethernet.

    I unticked ethernet anyway and rebooted but faced the same hang where it stops at airport command again.

    Not sure how to turn this airport card off, and dont understand why it denied my command. any ideas?
     
  10. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #11
  11. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #13
    I tried as you suggested by turning wireless on in safe mode however i encountered some error im not sure what it means so ive included a screenshot:

    [​IMG]

    As for trying to delete the wireless airport it never showed up in the network window, all it recognises is the ethernet as per below:

    [​IMG]

    I'm wondering if it might be best if i tried to remove the airport card manually? as i don't seem to be able to disable it.
     
  12. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #14
    I wish I had something else to tell you, but you're in over my head. As to physically disabling the Airport, isn't that integrated on the Logic Board like everything else these days? To me this seems like it's something software related, if I didn't know that you'd already tried a nuke and pave that's what I'd suggest. Only other thing I can think of is trying the folks over at the 123macmini.com forums, they seem to be pretty knowledgeable, wish I could think of something else.
     
  13. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #15
    No probs, thanks for the advice, i'll see if anyone over there will have any more ideas on solving this problem as i'd prefer not to open it up as there are no clear guides for the intel mac minis on getting to the airport card.
    Pritty sure you can extract an airport card as people are selling them on ebay for the mini
     
  14. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #16
  15. calderone macrumors 68040

    calderone

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle
    #17
    You know, I wouldn't be surprised if you have a mix of the previous OS and the 10.4 reinstall.

    Did you wipe the drive when you reinstalled from the discs that came with the machine.
     
  16. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 27, 2009
    #18
    Yep i did a complete wipe on that partition before reinstalling osx, the os i now currently have on it is 10.4 tiger.

    I did try to install bootcamp windows on a different partition the other day to see if it would run, it didn't run the installer for that properly, just froze up after it restarted.
     
  17. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #19
    Looking over this again...what happens if you click the New button, do you get an option for Airport? On my iMac with OS 10.4.11 I also have available Built-in Firewire and Internal Modem, it's odd that you don't have the Firewire either, or maybe that only shows up if you use it. :confused:
     
  18. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #20
    If i click new i get the option of adding either "built in ethernet" or "6 to 4", no other options are available.

    Information appears for firewire in the "system profiler" so im not sure, however for airport it says "No information found"
     
  19. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #21
    Hmm, odd, for mine I get Internal Modem, Built-in Ethernet, Built-in Firewire, and 6 to 4. I don't an get option for Airport because my iMac doesn't have an Airport card installed in it, they were optional back then.

    I'm stumped by your problem, you would think that if the Mac wasn't recognizing that the Airport card was installed that it would just bypass it and boot. :confused:
     
  20. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #22
    I've attached a bootlog report of my system showing as i started up in normal mode, it froze, i powered off and on again launching safe mode.

    Maybe the data will mean something to someone who reads bootlogs, not sure if it gives indication of where the problems are at other than as we suspect in the airport card.
     

    Attached Files:

  21. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #23
    Well i opened the mini up today and removed the airport card, reinstalled OSX and got stuck in the boot screen again showing this:

    [​IMG]

    Don't know how to proceed now
     
  22. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040

    DewGuy1999

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2009
    #24
    I noticed that you have 2 partitions on the hard drive, what's on the other one, is it bootable? Do you have a backup of everything on the internal hard drive? I think I would try reformatting the entire hard drive, just make one partition, install your OS, nothing more and see if you can get it to boot. My guess is that something on the hard drive is FUBAR.

    This morning, apparently my iMac decided I was giving too much of my attention to those on the forums and decided it wasn't going to boot from it's internal hard drive, wouldn't even recognize it in System Profiler or Disk Utility, but would boot from my backup on my external. So, I rebooted into Safe Mode (if found the internal hard drive this time), ran a Verify Disk and a Repair Permissions and then ran a full TechTool Deluxe scan, rebooted and everything seems to be okay now. Nothing was ever found to be wrong. Go figure. :confused:
     
  23. muffiee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #25
    The other partition is my attempt at installing windows on it to see if it would run, it never did and with me erasing and reinstalling mac osx so many times i just forgot to delete that partition.

    I tested a usb hard drive the other day and isntalled osx onto that but it got stuck at the same loading screen so doubt its the hard drive. My guess is that its the logic board or a component on it thats faulty.

    Im trying to get my hands on Apple Service Diagnostic to see if it will detect something on my mac, barring this dont think there is much else i can do.
     

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