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Dronecatcher

macrumors 603
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Jun 17, 2014
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Lincolnshire, UK
Last week I bought my first Mac Pro - 2.66 model, good condition with 9Gb RAM - not bad for £40.
First off, setting about installing Lion, it wouldn't recognise the DVD at all - I tried Snow Leopard DVD - same story. So, I replaced the optical drive with one from an old G5 - this time it recognised the Snow Leopard but not the Lion disk. I had to use my Firewire DVD writer to install Lion eventually and once setup, most data disks I popped in were deemed blank.
I notified the seller (a computer recycler) and they kindly sent me a replacement drive....and it behaves exactly the same - reads virtually no disks and is incapable of sucessfully writing any too.
Is it really possible that 3 drives have failed simultaneously (the G5 one known to be working previously) or is there some update I'm missing..or worse, Apple made Lion so choosy over which disks it 'likes' to move us away from optical media?
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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Did you try to install SL, go through all updates, get the AppStore finally and make a download-install of Lion?

That's what I did years ago on my 1.83 C2D prior to selling it - downloaded through the App Store then followed a guide to write to DVD. Tried that DVD first, then downloaded a custom made DVD image aswell..no difference.
 

bobesch

macrumors 68020
Oct 21, 2015
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Kiel, Germany
Last time I installed Lion on my white c2d intel iMacs I went through the installation-procedure of SL/Updates/Lion, because I didn't ever create a DVD and there was no other Lion-Mac at hands, to make a Recovery-USB-stick (there had been an official Apple-App to build a USB-stick from an pre-existing Lion-installation).
But SL/Updates/Lion went well several times.
Starting with version 4 CCC does support creation/cloning of the Recovery. Unfortunately Lion can only run CCC-3, which doesn't offer that option.
I can't remember, how to clone the Lion-Recovery between Macs or how to create one, if the harddrive only holds a clone-copy of Lion without the Recovery ...
Lion is really an odd step between the early and the new OSX-versions.
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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I can't remember, how to clone the Lion-Recovery between Macs or how to create one, if the harddrive only holds a clone-copy of Lion without the Recovery

I don't have a problem installing Lion though - that's done (with my Firewire drive) - my problem is 3 optical drives have failed which seems unlikely ;)
 

bobesch

macrumors 68020
Oct 21, 2015
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Kiel, Germany
I don't have a problem installing Lion though - that's done (with my Firewire drive) - my problem is 3 optical drives have failed which seems unlikely ;)
Ups - didn't get that ... sorry.
About the drives: maybe related to that master-slave-settings or a defective cable? Hu - I don't understand much about that... Could you reuse the cables from the G5 or test the drives with another PM?
BTW: Have You got a clue, how to clone the Lion-Recovery? Well, it's not a critical question, since there are some running Lion-installations left for a CCC-clone and maybe it's better to spend some time in making an installation-DVD too.
 
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eyoungren

macrumors Penryn
Aug 31, 2011
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About the drives: maybe related to that master-slave-settings or a defective cable? Hu - I don't understand much about that... Could you reuse the cables from the G5 or test the drives with another PM?
With the G5 everything switched to SATA and the Mac Pros continue to use SATA.

The optical drives continue to use IDE. Not sure if that changed by a certain model or not as my understanding of that isn't complete. But the optical drive would be the only drive on the IDE bus. So, Master/Slave really isn't relevant here and many optical drives aren't even designed to allow that now.

If it's a SATA optical drive (and most of them are now) then it could be the cable. Of course, I'm always one to jump to the extreme first and would suspect the drive controller on the logicboard. But there's not any evidence of that at the moment.
 

bunnspecial

macrumors G3
May 3, 2014
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Kentucky
The optical drives continue to use IDE. Not sure if that changed by a certain model or not as my understanding of that isn't complete. But the optical drive would be the only drive on the IDE bus. So, Master/Slave really isn't relevant here and many optical drives aren't even designed to allow that now.

1,1s/2,1s have "hidden" SATA ports for the optical drives. I've never had an ATAPI drive in my 1,1 at work-the previous owner had already run a SATA cable to the header on the LoBo, and I just fitted one since it's easier to find working SATA drives these days.

I THINK the 3,1 is set up the same, but hopefully a 3,1 owner can confirm that(I've never owned one).

The 4,1/5,1 went all SATA.

In any case, I do have to ask-why even bother burning a disk to install Lion? It's faster and easier with an 8gb flash drive, and you can reuse the drive later.
 
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Dronecatcher

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In any case, I do have to ask-why even bother burning a disk to install Lion?

Because a DVD costs pennies - a flash drive doesn't and all my flash drives are in constant use - when I want to write an iso to one I have to back up the data, then use dd to write the iso. Having a DVD just ready to go is my preferred method.
 
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jbarley

macrumors 601
Jul 1, 2006
4,023
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Vancouver Island
This might well be a reach but, awhile ago I had reason to remove the optical drive cage, and when I reinstalled it the drive no longer worked properly.
This appears to be a common problem, (pinched ribbon cable issues) and evidence of this can be found on line such as in this posting.
https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4021688
My solution was to replace the cable with one I found on eBay.
This might account for the multiple drive failures you are having.
 

Dronecatcher

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Jun 17, 2014
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This might well be a reach but, awhile ago I had reason to remove the optical drive cage, and when I reinstalled it the drive no longer worked properly.

This was the first thing I considered but the cable is well out of the way and appears intact. I'm sure if there was physical damage there would be no functionality - as it is it reads some disks and writes some too...just incredibly picky.
 

LightBulbFun

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2013
2,872
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London UK
Because a DVD costs pennies - a flash drive doesn't and all my flash drives are in constant use - when I want to write an iso to one I have to back up the data, then use dd to write the iso. Having a DVD just ready to go is my preferred method.

if your imaging OS X via DD then your doing it wrong... (unless its OS X Server 1.2v3)

use disk utility to image it

if you dont have a free USB stick then just use small partition on the hard drive or use another mac in TDM and image the installer to that....

intel macs are not picky about where to boot from, if you could squeeze OS X down enough you could boot Mac OS X off a ZIP drive connected to the ATA bus of your Mac Pro im pretty sure :D

i actually rarely install OS X from an installation CD or what have you, since i have to reinstall OS X so many times these days due to what I do I just have every major version of OS X from 1.2v3 to 10.9.5 or so in pre made full install, image files that I can just deploy to any HDD or storage medium I wish :) (I can also feed the images directly into QEMU etc if i wish to test something out in emulation)
 
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bunnspecial

macrumors G3
May 3, 2014
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Kentucky
I'll continue to be contrary and say that if you are going to dig into the system to replace the ODD ribbon cable, it's as good of time as any to run a SATA cable to the headers and go ahead and drop in a SATA ODD.

ATAPI drives are increasingly getting on in years, while SATA drives are a lot easier to find new/new old stock in my experience.

I keep ATAPI drives for my PPC Macs, and use SATA in my Mac Pros.
 

1042686

Cancelled
Sep 3, 2016
1,575
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My preferred method for imaging drives nowadays is TDM - Love it. I also did the MP Sata ODD upgrade on Bunnys advice & it worked out great. Use a sata cable that has a right angle as there’s not a lot of space around the “hidden” ports on the lobo. That helped in routing the cable IIRC.
 
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Dronecatcher

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jun 17, 2014
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Interesting...burned copy of iLife 08 (DVD-R) that I've used many times not recognised and spat out...official Apple retail version, loads and installs fine...
 

seveej

macrumors 6502a
Dec 14, 2009
827
51
Helsinki, Finland
I don't have a problem installing Lion though - that's done (with my Firewire drive) - my problem is 3 optical drives have failed which seems unlikely ;)

As noted here, all those drives (which probably are IDE/ATAPI) are probably quite old. I do not think many have been manufactured this decade.

My personal experience is that CD/DVD drives tend to be the first moving part in a desktop computer to quit.

What I'm trying to say is: yes, all the units may well have been busted.

RGDS,
 

weckart

macrumors 603
Nov 7, 2004
5,846
3,521
Interesting...burned copy of iLife 08 (DVD-R) that I've used many times not recognised and spat out...official Apple retail version, loads and installs fine...

Sounds like either the laser is dying or very slightly misaligned or the software is not operating the read laser at full whack.
 
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