Replaced HDD with SSD on 2007 iMac, now won't boot past white screen (with cursor)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ElCani, Jan 25, 2016.

  1. ElCani macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #1
    Hi. I have just replaced the HDD on a 2007 iMac with a Kingston 240GB SSD. I followed the iFixit guide and everything appeared to go smoothly. However when I try to boot the Mac into start-up mode (holding down the Option key) it get's stuck on a white screen with a movable cursor. All other boot modes (normal, Cmd+R, C, D etc) result in the folder with the flashing question mark. I've got an El Capitan USB install disk prepared and connected but I cannot get to the start-up stage. I have tried using this install disk on another Mac and booting with the Option key held down worked fine.

    Stuff I've tried:

    SMC reset
    NVRAM reset
    Booting with nothing attached
    Booting with wireless keyboard and trackpad
    Booting with wired keyboard and mouse
    Unplugging power cable and leaving a while

    The Mac once displayed an image of an HDD with a globe sitting on top of it, which I can weirdly find no mention of on the internet! All other attempts have resulted in a white screen with a movable cursor (or the folder with question mark).

    So, does anyone have any ideas? Could something that happened when I had the Mac open result in this type of behaviour? The SSD I installed was not formatted but as I understand it that should not be a problem.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #2
    Update: I re-fitted the old HDD and it booted up fine, so it I don't appear to have damaged anything inside. I suppose could clone the HDD on to the SSD but I don't have a USB enclosure. I am currently installing OSX on to a flash drive to see if I can boot off that (by selecting it as the startup disk). If that works I'll refit the SSD, boot off the flash drive and see if the SSD appears in disk utility. If it does I should be able to install OSX on to it, then select it as the startup disk and the problem will be solved. Correct?
     
  3. bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2015
    #3
    For only $12 and given that SATA is 2.5" now, these adapters are very handy to have around. You can test the drive, you can test it's ability to boot, and you can clone your previous drive before it goes inside.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. kohlson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    #4
    The flashing ?+folder means the system has passed POST, and the hardware is good, but can't find a compatible OS. Rhetorical question - Does El Cap support this system? Anyway, a way I have used in the past is to boot from the existing, connect the drive through a USB or something, and then clone/install OS first. This way you should be able to check it before disassembling everything.
     
  5. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #5
    Thanks both. This is on El Capitan. I will clone the drive tomorrow as all other attempts have failed. Weird problem, because unless I've misunderstood something (very possible!) the Mac should boot into start up mode (power button + hold down Option key) with any disk attached? Or even with no disks attached?
     
  6. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #6
    You should boot using command+alt+R to get an internet recovery. Command+R tries recovery from your local disc, which I assume is just formatted and thus empty.
     
  7. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #7
    Also... when I boot the iMac into startup with the old HDD installed it doesn't recognise the connected USB OSX installer. There are only two drives shown, the main drive and the recovery partition. When I connect the USB installer to my Macbook Air (2010, also on El Capitan) and boot into startup the USB installer is recognised.
    --- Post Merged, Jan 25, 2016 ---
    Thanks but that's why I created and connected the USB installer. Although the iMac doesn't seem to recognise it at the startup stage...

    As far as I'm aware, internet recovery is not possible on a 2007 iMac.
     
  8. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #8
    Yes, a 2007 iMac cannot boot into Internet Recovery. It's around 3 years too old.

    How much RAM is installed in the 2007 iMac? El Cap requires 2GB minimum to boot and install.
     
  9. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #9
    4GB RAM installed.
     
  10. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #10
    Try reseating the RAM sticks.

    Best is to format the SSD from an external case, or an adapter such as from post #3.
    You can use ANY Mac that will boot El Capitan to install El Cap on the SSD when connected as an external drive. If the resulting El Cap install on the SSD will boot another Mac, then the same SSD should boot your 2007 iMac.
    So, I suggest installing El Cap on your SSD (using a different Mac), then testing for a boot on both Macs.
     
  11. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #11
    Tried the RAM (forgot to mention in that in the list). Off to buy an enclosure for the SSD and will update later as to whether it worked. Thanks.
     
  12. ElCani thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #12
    So... installed OS X on the SSD, fitted and it booted fine. The effect of the SSD is remarkable! It's turned a cripplingly slow machine into a smooth, zippy thing. No doubt it would bog down with anything CPU or GPU intensive but for basic light use it's brilliant.

    Thanks all. :)
     
  13. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Delaware
    #13
    Glad that you got it working!
    Good luck in the future!
     

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