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Dead Imac - 2008, aluminium 24", 2.8ghz..

Posted on 2013-06-17
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Last Modified: 2014-04-11
This looked like a hard drive problem, so I replaced the 500gb with a new 1tb, re-assembled, with the Snow Leopard disk in the superdrive, and switched on.  
Same again. Nothing.  The superdrives whirrs, for a few seconds, and then all is quiet.  Screen is blank... etc.  
The disc stays in the drive.  In order to get the previous disc out, I had to take the superdrive partly apart...

I'm looking for some way to move past this, and try and detect the problem.  But I'm not very techy...but  I can follow instructions and replace components.
So.. what's my next step?
There are four status lights down near the bottom.. the lh one  is on, when the machine is switched off...switch on, and the leftmost 3 are on, with the 4th one off.

If I've asked this in the wrong section, perhaps someone could advise me the correct one?

Thank you,

Nichollette

if I can supply any further info - just ask.. I'm a bit of a novice at this, but I'd rate myself as a "capable" novice...!   :-)
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Question by:stokesydel
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by:strung
ID: 39253264
Did you hold down the C key when trying to boot from the DVD?

Is it a full retail Snow Leopard disk (black, not grey)?
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by:strung
ID: 39253267
To remove a disk from the drive, reboot while holding down the mouse button.
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39253410
Holding down the C key doesn't eject the disk.
Holding down the control key doesn't eject the disk

The same thing occurred when I tried an older version of OSX.

I think the disk was grey... not black.  box says it's 10.6.3

Thanks for your responses..!

Nichollette
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LVL 53

Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 39253502
Holding down the c key isn't supposed to eject the disk. Holding down the C key while booting will cause the computer to boot from the CD.

To eject the disk, reboot while hold down the left mouse button.

A grey disk won't work. Grey disks are OEM disks that shipped with a new Mac. They will work only with the Mac they came with.

You need either the disk that came with the Mac or a full retail install DVD which will be black.

Eject the current disk by booting while holding down the mouse button.

Then, if you have a black DVD, insert it and reboot while holding down the C key.
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39253618
Thank you for the response.

I almost certainly don't have the black version.. but I believe I have the original disks that came with the machine.  marked os version 10.5, dated 2007.  Would that be about right?  it's the only Mac i've bought new, so it's likely they are the original disks...

Tried holding down the mouse  (no button on it apart from that little grey nipple), and it sounds like it's trying...  but then the machine switches off. (the three status lamps go back to one illuminated)

Shall I take the drive apart again and extract the disc, do you think?

thanks

Nichollette
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by:strung
ID: 39253673
The 10.5 disks are likely the right ones.

You may have to take the superdrive apart again if booting with the mouse down does not eject the disk. (I am assuming it is a USB mouse and not a wireless or bluetooth mouse. Holding down the mouse button on the latter might not eject the disk(
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39253685
it's a bluetooth mouse.
I'll have a look and see if I have a conventional mouse anywhere... doubt it...

Tks!

Nichollette
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by:strung
ID: 39253687
You could also try restarting while holding down the eject button on your keyboard if you have one.
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Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 39253688
A USB mouse from a PC will work.
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by:stokesydel
ID: 39256429
ok.  got the OEM tiger disk out, tried it with the original disk.. same result.

What's the next logical step?

The Superdrive could be faulty.. but the crash occurred when the drive wasn't in use.  So that wasn't the cause..

thanks again,

Nichollette
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by:strung
ID: 39256463
When you put the 10.5 disk in, did you hold down the  C key while booting? If so, exactly what happened?
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by:strung
ID: 39256484
Any chance you knocked something loose or didn't reconnect something when you had the computer apart? Did you follow the repair guide here:

http://www.ifixit.com/Device/iMac_Intel_24%22_EMC_2134_and_2211
 ?
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39256525
the machine, when plugged in, but switched off, won't accept a disk.  There's a latch of sorts, and that lifts when the machine is switched on, and allows insertion of the disk.

So.  C key held down.. all the time...the superdrive, I assume, makes a mechanical noise, then after a few seconds, there's a whirring noise, along with a movement of air that doesn't come from either of the two fans.
No sound. No picture

btw, the glass protective screen and metal frame are removed at this point.  I'm assuming there are no safety switches involved - and that the machine will operate same as when it's completely assembled?

Thank you,

Nichollette
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by:strung
ID: 39256649
Sorry but I am out of ideas at this point.
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39256671
Just opened the machine again and checked all the connections.  Double checked.

That's a very good guide.. Ifixit - thanks... I followed a similar guide, same result.

I think I read somewhere how to interpret the 4 status lights down near the memory.

My fear is that this is a logic board problem... if so, I think I'll be wasting your time and mine.. I think that's too big a job.

Regards,

Nichollette
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39256685
Am I in the "best" section for this question, or should I try another area?

thanks

Nichollette
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Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 39256707
I think you are in the right section. If it won't boot from the DVD you are pretty well stuck unless you have a second Mac available to troubleshoot using FireWire target disk mode.

http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1661
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39256764
Ah.. ok.. do I need any Mac in particular?  Imac?  Any one with a Firewire connection?  do you know anywhere there are instructions for this?  d
I'm really stuck.. I'm in the wilds, and there are no Mac fixers for 100 miles..but I was thinking.. perhaps I could buy a used mac and try what you suggest?

Thanks again for all your help.

Nichollette
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by:strung
ID: 39256798
Instructions are in the link above. Any Mac with a FireWire port will work.

Before you get another Mac make sure your computer will boot into FireWire target disk mode.

Boot while holding down the T key. The computer should eventually show a yellow FireWire symbol (looks a bit like a radiation hazard warning) on the screen.

If that doesn't happen, and assuming there is nothing wrong with your keyboard, I would assume you have a serious hardware problem.
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Expert Comment

by:strung
ID: 39256800
Are you using a wireless keyboard by any chance?
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39256891
Yes.  I am...I see what you may be getting at....maybe it was switched off, is that it?
Could be. Let me check again.
Thanks..
Nicollet te
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39257131
Switched to a USB keyboard. No difference...no lights on the keyboard.
Now looking for signs of a faulty logic board.
Or..any OTHER fault indications.

Thanks!

Nichollett
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39363765
This is still a problem, and in danger of being terminated by the administrator.  A little progress has been made, but I'm approaching it from a different angle..

Will be back with more questions shortly..

Thank you,

Nichollette
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Accepted Solution

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DIGGER-NZ earned 500 total points
ID: 39423474
Hi, the HDD might be the problem. It's been a while since I repaired an iMAC last but they have thermal sensors that attach to the Hard Drive. If the Hard Drive (3rd Party) doesn't have the connector it can cause problems. There is a way around this but I cannot remember off the top of my head. Majority of issues with iMAC's like this relate to incorrect re-assembly.
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Author Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39472971
I'll be having another look at this machine next week..

i have other problems to attend to right now.

Thanks so far..

Nichollette
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Author Closing Comment

by:stokesydel
ID: 39995338
I'm not able to get back to this one… topic ended.  Machine still u/s.
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