Pulled the riser card while the power was still on...

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by ScottishCaptain, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. ScottishCaptain macrumors 6502a

    Oct 4, 2008
    I've got a friend who owns a 2009 MacPro4,1 unit. He was having some issues with a flaky stick of RAM and went to check the diagnostic LEDs on the CPU daughter card. One momentary lapse of reason later, he's got the daughter card out lying on his desk and wondering why his iTunes music stopped playing. The board was yanked out of the machine while it was still powered on.

    I'm told there was a blue arc flash from the connector at the back, the machine speaker (or his desktop speakers) made a really weird noise that sounded like "an 8-bit cat being ran over by a garbage truck" (his words) and then the entire thing obviously went dead.

    The system won't even startup anymore. Plug it in, nothing happens. Press the power button, nothing happens. I tried shorting out the power on jumpers on the logic board, nothing happens. No diagnostic LEDs lit up anywhere.

    We've (err, I have) tried everything. Reseated all the power cables, reseated the CPU card, checked the backplane connector (no obvious damage, can't see any damage from the electrical arcing), reseated all the RAM. I was going to reseat the CPUs themselves but I didn't think this would do anything, and since it's the 2009 dual CPU board that would be a huge pain in the ass anyways.

    The system is out of warranty. I'm guessing the PSU, logic board, or daughter card is blown, or some combination thereof.

    Has anyone else ever seen or heard of this happening, and if so, what was the damage caused? I can replace any of the parts for him, but with absolutely no way of telling which part is busted (assuming the answer isn't "everything")- we're a bit leery on purchasing random replacement parts without knowing what the culprit is first.

    If the machine is seriously hooped, he'll probably just buy a new system when the 2013s come out and use his laptop until then. Irregardless, I'm wondering if anyone has had any experience with this kind of user judgement failure, and what sort of damage we should expect.

  2. Killerbob macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2008
    Working as an IT tech for a number of years in various colleges and universities, I have dealt with that situation a few times, albeit not in Mac Pros. Pulling a PCI card from a running PC would usually shut it down, but if it bricked it, it would normally be the MoBo which was fried, not the PSU, or any PCI cards.

    Of course this being the daughter board with RAM, that could have blown as well. No matter what, it can be fixed, but it will probably be expensive.

    Take it to an Apple repair shop, and have them use their various spareparts to figure out what is blown, by deductive reasoning. Then say no to the repair, pay them for their time, and fix it yourselves.

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