Recovery Mode NOT Loading!

HelpMePls

macrumors newbie
Apr 19, 2019
22
0
0
Hello I recently picked up a iMac Mid 2011 27” 3.4GHz i7 1TB HDD with 16GB Ram for a $150 bucks because the person couldn’t get past the flashing question mark folder which I’ve easily fixed several times in the past before.

However this time I’ve run into a new problem...

The iMac does NOT bring up the Recovery Mode / macOS Utilities option as pictured below with the beautiful four choices of: Time Machine, Reinstall OS, Get Help and Disk Utility.

5DD21451-10A8-48FC-A34A-419F2FFB237C.jpeg


Holding COMMAND + R / COMMAND + OPTION + R brings up Internet Recovery with the spinning globe, followed by the progress bar. Once the progress bar loads, the screen stays blank (gray) indefinitely.

Holding Option with my bootable USB with High Sierra on it (which I’ve used countless times without fail), loads the Startup Manager - with only one option of “Install MacOS High Sierra”. I can’t see the Macintosh HDD at all.

When I select the “Install MacOS High Sierra” option, it changes to an Apple logo with a progress bar below it. About 90% complete, it flashes the Apple logo, followed by the screen turning black for 1-2 seconds, followed by the screen going blank (gray) and staying that way indefinitely.

I’ve also reset the PRAM and reset SMC, with the issue still persisting.

Holding SHIFT (attempting to boot into safe mode) or letting it load up normally and I get the flashing question mark folder.

I suspect the 1TB HDD is corrupted / failed.

I’ve already opened the iMac up and unplugged and replugged the 1TB HDD to ensure it wasn’t a loose connection but the problem still remains unchanged.

Tomorrow I’m picking up a new 2TB HDD from someone to replace the 1TB HDD and hopefully then it loads the Recovery Options.

Just wondering if anyone (@Weaselboy) has any experience with what’s happening here? TIA.
 
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Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
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California
Holding COMMAND + R / COMMAND + OPTION + R brings up Internet Recovery with the spinning globe, followed by the progress bar. Once the progress bar loads, the screen stays blank (gray) indefinitely.
Yeah... Internet recovery with command-option-r is the way to go here, and if you are seeing the grey spinning globe, you are doing it correctly. The fact this ends in nothing but a grey screen makes me fear you have some other underlying hardware issue going on here. It is worth a shot trying a new drive.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,004
5,464
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Could be a bad GPU or bad drive.

You should have used that $150 for something else... :(
 

jerwin

macrumors 68020
Jun 13, 2015
2,449
4,445
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are you trying to run internet recovery over wifi? You'll eliminate a potential point of failure by using a ethernet cable into your router.
 

TwoH

macrumors member
May 19, 2019
43
8
0
Considering the model of the machine, and you have tried internet recovery -- I would assume it more to be GPU.
 

HelpMePls

macrumors newbie
Apr 19, 2019
22
0
0
Okay update.

I put in a new 2TB HDD and still the exact same symptoms as described above - no change, everything goes to a blank screen.

I then put in a 500GB HDD out of my 2010 MacBook with High Sierra already preinstalled with all the apps.

When I turn it on, it boots up to the Apple logo with a progress bar which got my excited but just after the halfway mark, it goes to the blank / gray screen and just restarts the computer.

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After it reaches the halfway point, it goes to the blank screen then restarts.

FF4FAF18-56DB-4939-BCCA-BAF09F9681A2.jpeg


If I hold Option, it at least recognises the MacBook Pro 2010 HDD...

ADE39079-6E30-44A1-B7D6-A234A22BCBC9.jpeg


So it’s not the drive I don’t think?

Something won’t let it load beyond the Apple logo / Internet Recovery ...

Is this a common issue with a failed GPU?
 

HelpMePls

macrumors newbie
Apr 19, 2019
22
0
0
Yep, this is def a GPU fault
Edit: It is common on the 2011 machines
Yeah wow thanks!

It looks like I have 3 options:

1. Reflowing the GPU by baking it in the oven for free

2. Paying a repair guy $100 to do it

* both options above have varying results lasting from 9 months to 3 years beyond...

GPU OVEN BAKE TRICK

3. Paying a repair guy $300 to replace the GPU chip and the faulty ram chips around it
 
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