Really bad iMac problem, something to do with hardware

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Mac OS X Ocelot, Mar 11, 2010.

  1. Mac OS X Ocelot macrumors 6502a

    Mac OS X Ocelot

    Sep 7, 2005
    I've had my iMac for a little over a year. It waited a year to do this to me, but I'm pretty sure it's a hardware problem they sold it to me with.

    Basically, things go slow and then I get beachballed and programs start freezing until the whole computer is completely locked up. The only thing I can do is hold the power button down to shut it down. At first when i rebooted it would work fine for about a week or so. Then as time went on it happened more frequently. Not only that, but when I try to boot it just gives me the folder with a question mark icon because it can't boot from my drive.

    I boot from my external and it first gives a warning that it can't read my internal and when I try to do anything with it, like in Disk Utility, it won't let me. It just labels the drive "Media" (which isn't what I named it) and says it has a capacity of 0 and can't be mounted.

    Well, several attempts to reboot would do the trick and I can use my internal hard drive normally... for about a day or so. Then the same problems. Then it would take even more attempts, over the course of a day or more, to get it to boot. I even tried reinstalling Leopard from the restore disk. It didn't work so well. And now it won't boot no matter how many attempts.

    I've been booting from my external solely for the last few days. Then today it suddenly starts doing exactly what my internal was doing. The freezing and having to force shut it. And after a couple tries to boot from it it gives the folder-question-mark icon. I finally got it booted again and things are running fine -- of course that's how it went with my internal, and look where I am.

    My questions are these:

    1) Anyone know what's going on? It can't be hard drive failure or the system install problems because it happened to both drives almost simultaneously. It has to be other hardware.

    2) Even though the warranty is up, since I'm pretty sure it's a problem that was always going to happen, i.e. faulty hardware they sold me (as in, it's a lemon), will they repair it or refund it anyway? I mean it just seems like they'd have to.

    If they sold me a freaking lemon for which there was never any hope and this was the only outcome and then they don't fix it or give me my money back, I'm going to call shenanigans on Apple. That would be a dick move on their part. Oh and this was a refurb (oh yeah everyone here's telling me to go with a refurb because they're certified and cheaper), if that matters.

    The nearest Apple Store-slash-ASSP is quite a ways away and I don't want to drive there just for them to tell me I'm SOL or that I'll have to pay for diagnosis and/or repair when I can't really afford it and it's their fault anyway.

    Thanks for trudging through this post. As you can imagine I'm very frustrated. Any help would be appreciated.
  2. pcman2000 macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2010
    Repair Premissions in Disk Utility!
    use OynX to clean your system!
    Run Apple Hardware test

    If you dont know how, use google :)
  3. BlueRevolution macrumors 603


    Jul 26, 2004
    Montreal, QC
    It still sounds to me like the hard drive is a likely suspect. A failing hard drive can slow things down even when you're booted to another drive.

    Calling Apple is always worth a shot, but I'd be surprised if they'd help you here. All hard drives fail, it's just a question of when. Personally, I'd say now's a great time to be thinking about getting a bigger hard drive.
  4. Mac OS X Ocelot thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mac OS X Ocelot

    Sep 7, 2005
    I was constantly repairing permissions when the drive was working and I'm doing so now on my external. I don't know what to clean from my system, but I don't think it would help. I ran the full hardware test and it didn't find any problems, though it only checks the memory.

    I've been sure the internal hard drive is the problem, but when it started happening on my external it freaked me out. The thing is I'm sure the internal was faulty from the start, but I'm too far from the Apple Store and too busy to get out there. It mostly worked but only started doing the total failure thing until just after the warranty expired.

    When I first got it I had trouble importing my files from my old mac, and there was other quirkiness. Things like running rebuild and disk repair sort of helped and it lulled me into a (stupid) passiveness about it. I'm just frustrated that I have to foot the bill for a problem I'm sure was their own fault. If I could, I'd have them refund it and then spend half the money I spent on it and build my own pc.
  5. Flynnstone macrumors 65816


    Feb 25, 2003
    Cold beer land
    Should have talked to Apple before warranty was up.

    I bought a refurb MacBook about 2 years ago. I called them up, described the problems and they said engineering would like my MacBook. Asked if I'd like it repaired or excahnged with a new latest version model.
    No surpirse , I took the new one.

    Anyway ... call Apple. Doesn't hurt.
  6. Mac OS X Ocelot thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mac OS X Ocelot

    Sep 7, 2005
    I just called and the guy told me that I can take it to the Apple Store and have them see if they can find preexisting problems with it, but basically since I have no record of ever calling for help it looks like I'm making it up or that it's my fault. Now I have to find time to get down there and hope they don't charge me anything for the diagnostics session.

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