Problem with Imac I swear I've tried everything HELP!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by mauibarber, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. mauibarber, Mar 13, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2011

    mauibarber macrumors newbie

    Apr 29, 2009
    Here is basic problem I am having with my imac. It often will get the spinning wheel of doom off and on everytime I click on something. While typing this out it is doing it. Off and on, Off and on.

    The computer runs really slow and often when I go to restart the computer when fully warmed, I get the flashing ? folder. When I start it cold I don't get the folder. Sometimes I have to let the computer sit for a half hour or so to properly boot after seeing the ? folder.

    It basically feels like something heavy is running and slowing the computer, but I can find nothing running but the basics. It's laggy and the wheel keeps coming on over and over.

    It doesn't do this always. Sometimes the computer runs lightening fast then all of a sudden it will slow to a crawl and force me to turn it off.

    Only other thing I can think of is that sometimes when I start the computer cold in the morning I get 3 beeps. I simply click the power button off and back on and it starts right up.

    Here is what I have done so far.

    • Completely reinstalled the entire OS then put on my timemachine back up.
    • I have run Onyx with no problems reported
    • I have reset the Pram
    • I have done the extensive RAM check and everything checks out fine.
    • I have installed temperature control programs and everything is running at proper temperature. I have increased the fan speed as well, no change.
    • I have run all the system and hardware checks off the install discs. Everything checks ok.
    • I have run disc permission repair on the computer and off the install disc. no problems.
    • I have checked the activity monitor and I can find nothing thats taking heavy CPU use. Usually 90 percent free.
    • I have restarted in safe mode then restarted normally, still laggy.
    • I have installed "CPU Test" and it runs fine with no problems.
    • I have disabled all ""add ons" from firefox"

    I am looking for some help. Any ideas?
    The computer is a 2.8 aluminum imac with 4 gigs of ram with ati radian 2600pro
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    It sounds like your hard drive is dying. You should make a backup immediately if you don't already have one. However the three beeps usually indicates bad RAM, so that could be an issue as well. I'd go to the Genius bar and have them check it out
  3. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Dying hard drive would be my guess. Make a back up now!
  4. mauibarber thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 29, 2009
    I made a backup with time machine so I'm ok.

    Why was I able to reinstall OS and none of the hard drive checks fail if the hard drive is failing?
  5. Voondebah macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2010
    I had the HDD in my Mac Mini fail with similar results as you. I had started getting seemingly infinite beach-balls. I could repair the disk and permissions fine, and was even able to re-install the OS like you did. It worked better for a bit, but then right back to bad habits. A couple more restarts later, and the system wouldn't recognize the drive - it died. I could sometimes get it to restart and recognize the drive, but it was inconsistent.
  6. flopticalcube macrumors G4


    Sep 7, 2006
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    Hard drives can fail silently. Slowly. You could also check your RAM using e Apple Hardware Test on you boot DVD.
  7. mauibarber thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 29, 2009
    Checked the RAM, no problems. weird.
  8. mauibarber thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 29, 2009
    Is it possible that the cooling vents on the bottom of the computer are plugged but the temperature monitor still shows the computer isn't getting too hot? Is there something else in the computer that does not have a temperature probe on it that could be getting too hot and causing the computer to slow way down?

    I put an external fan on the computer tonight and so far I have had no problems.
  9. davids8477 macrumors 6502

    Jan 4, 2008
    Create a new user account and reboot into that account. You may have some software that is misbehaving and causing your problems.
    if is does not occur with the new account then I'd look for some software issue. If it does occur then is probably your hard drive.
  10. Paulywauly macrumors 6502a


    Sep 26, 2009
    Durham, UK
    The answers are pretty unanimous here its most likely the hard drive

    exactly the same thing happened to me on my last iMac, SMART status checked out but after doing a full surface scan with techtool deluxe it detected thousands of errors. Give that a try if you can if you want to be sure

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