Startup problems

Discussion in 'OS X Mavericks (10.9)' started by zalle, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. zalle macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #1
    Hi, I'm using Mavericks on my 2013 27" i5 iMac.

    I'm having startup problems. I get the apple logo and the circle forever. My solution is to startup in safe mode, go to disk utility, fix permissions.

    This way I can start it a few times, but then it goes back to not starting again.

    If I upgrade to Yosemite, could all this just go away?

    Thanks
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #2
    Yosemite will not likely fix this. Try doing a command-r boot to recovery and use Disk Utility to run verify disk and tell us what that says. It almost sounds like your drive is failing.
     
  3. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #3
    Hi,

    Thanks for your answer. I did what you said, and it went into internet recovery. I did the verify disk and it said everything seems to be ok. I do lots of intensive processor and HDD work and it never failed me, it's just the startup.

    I then decided to reinstall Mavericks with the internet recovery. It did start ok, not sure if it solved the problem yet.
     
  4. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #4
    Ok, Mavericks reinstalled. It did work fine.

    Today I restarted the imac (which I don't often do) and the same problem appeared. I had to restart in safe mode, and fix permissions to restart it. Which it did.

    I only restarted the imac because there was some software to install... Could it be related?

    Any more ideas?

    If the problem persists, is there a way to save all programs to the time machine, do a clean install of the OSX and then reinstall the programs with time machine so that all is the same as before?

    Thanks
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #5
    It does sound like a failing drive.

    You don't even need to reinstall. Just make a Time Machine backup to a local USB disk. Then once the new disk is in, you option key boot to the TM disk. That will take you to a recovery screen. From there use Disk Util to format the new disk then restore everything. That will put the OS and all your apps and data back on the new disk.
     
  6. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #6
    Hi, why is it a failing drive? It seems hard to believe... I'm processing thousands of photos daily, editing video, without a single problem. Only when I restart there's a problem. The computer is 10 months old... Damn... :(

    I could send it to the store, it's under warranty, but right now I need it for work!
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #7
    I have no idea why this would happen, but what you are describing sounds like a failing drive.
     
  8. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #8
    I tested, retested and just re-retested the HDD and disk utility always says it appears to be OK.
     
  9. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #9
    DU can show no problems and you can still have a bad drive.
     
  10. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    #10
    So what's the point of DU??? How can I test the drive for real?
     
  11. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #11
    I don't know what to tell you. All I can say is what you are describing is exactly the symptoms of a failing hard drive, and I have seen many cases here with bad drives where DU shows nothing wrong.

    If I were you, I would just take it in under warranty.
     
  12. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

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    Delaware
    #12
    The situation that you have - as I understand it - is that you seem to be working OK, until your iMac won't restart. You mess around with the hard drive for a while, testing, reinstalling, etc - and it works again. Until it stops working. Then, again.
    When it works, it's OK, and tests OK. Seems like the problem is on restarts. Possibly the problem is the the hard drive may not be spinning up properly, and it's intermittent (doesn't happen the same way every time). So, it works, then, it doesn't work. If you want it to fail a test, then you sort-of have to catch it when it's not working. I think that will be a waste of your time.
    The best test is a real world usage test (does it work when you need it to work?) which it appears to fail.
    The symptoms point to a failing hard drive. Repair Disk etc, fixes it for a short time, then you have to Repair Disk again, then you have to do the same again - again. The Repair Disk should not be a temporary work-around that only lasts through a couple of restarts.
    Bottom line: Replace the hard drive.
     
  13. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #13
    Hi,

    Hi DeltaMac, thanks for your answer.

    My system works flawlessly. Except sometimes when I restart it, but I don't have to Repair Disk, I just need to Repair Permissions.

    I usually get it to sleep, so I don't even notice the problem, but if I have to restart it... Then I get the apple and the forever spinning wheel...
     
  14. DeltaMac macrumors 604

    DeltaMac

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    Delaware
    #14
    Just so there is no misunderstanding - the Repair Permissions task will not fix a hard drive booting issue. Its "value", such as it is, comes when a perceived "bad permission" is found. The Repair Permission task "repairs" or resets the file or app permission settings. Those settings, good or "bad" would be extremely unlikely to affect system booting in any way.
    (By the way - Permissions don't suddenly go "bad".)
    The permissions repair is just a useful coincidence.
    It probably helps you get going again, because the drive needs to be working fairly well for the permissions "repair" to finish - then the hard drive would also be running well enough to completely boot (at least at that time)
    'tis not a repair, but just work-around. I predict that your problem will not improve in the future.

    What can you do?
    Continue to think about replacing your hard drive/SSD. Until then, be diligent with your backups. 'twill come a time when you will be glad you did!

    One more thought - check in your System Preferences/Startup Disk pane - make sure your boot drive is selected in that pane. I have occasionally seen weird boot issues when that is not selected, and your system simply takes too long to find the boot drive. Might have something to do with how the network is configured, and your local attached devices.
    It's worth a quick look, anyway :D
     
  15. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #15
    Just called apple's support, and they tell me to do a time machine backup, install Yosemite (latest and greatest they say) from scratch, and then use time machine to put my system operational again. That will tell me if it's hardware or software.

    All my files (except programmes and definitions) are on external HDD's only.
     
  16. zalle thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    #16
    Looks like Apple's support was right.

    Formatted the HDD, installed Mavericks (did not upgrade to Yosemite), used the Time Machine backup, and got everything up and running quite fast.

    It's fine now.

    Thanks for the help guys.
     

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