12 Replies Latest reply: Jan 17, 2013 1:32 PM by Randy Allen
Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

Problem 1 - Blinking folder, question mark, grey screen. This could probably be fixed with the install disk if it weren't for ...Problem 2- how do you open the CD drawer on an unresponsive old iMac? I was almost ready for a prying butter knife, but iBrain said "Don't do it, fool." Any ideas? I love my old Mac.


iMac flat screen
  • 1. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    just thought I'd add this...My-Old-Friend-copy.jpg

  • 2. Re: Dual problem...
    rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (5,360 points)

    There are a number of posts in this forum about defunct iMac G4's this day.

     

    You iMac could not find a valid os on a harddrive. Probably hd has gone bad. Hd last 5 or so years  on the average. Your HD has been good to you.

     

    What to do. 

    Try holding down the option key then power on. This brings up the startup manager. Click on your hd. Click on right arrow key.

     

    Sometimes if volumes don't appear in Startup Manager (what you get when you hold down the Option key at startup), you need to reset the Mac's PRAM, NVRAM, and Open Firmware. Shut down the Mac, then power it up, and before the screen lights up, quickly hold down the Command, Option, P, and R keys, until the Mac has chimed twice more after the powerup chime. Then, before the screen lights up, hold down Command-Option-O-F until the Open Firmware screen appears. Then enter these lines, pressing Return after each one:

     

    reset-nvram

    set-defaults

    reset-all

     

    "The reset-all command should restart your Mac. If so, you have successfully reset the Open Firmware settings."

    http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1812?viewlocale=en_US

     

    No luck.  Re-install OS

     

    Install new hd.  PATA.

     

    Buy external hd.

     

     

    Eject cd.

    power off your machine.  hold down your left mouse button.  power on your machine.  This should eject the cd.

     

    On a PowerPC-based Macintosh (but not an Intel-based Macintosh), you may use Open Firmware to eject a CD or DVD disc when normal methods for ejecting it have not succeeded.

    Immediately after the startup sound, press and hold the key combination Command-Option-o-f. Enter commands:

    eject cd

    mac-boot

     

     

    external hd

     

    You need an external Firewire drive to boot a PowerPC Mac computer.

     

    I recommend you do a google search on any external harddrive you are looking at.

     

    I bought a low cost external drive enclosure. When I started having trouble with it, I did a google search and found a lot of complaints about the drive enclosure. I ended up buying a new drive enclosure. On my second go around, I decided to buy a drive enclosure with a good history of working with Macs. The chip set seems to be the key ingredient. The Oxford line of chips seems to be good. I got the Oxford 911.

     

     

    Has everything interface:

    FireWire 800/400 + USB2, + eSATA 'Quad Interface'

    &

    save a little money interface:

    FireWire 400 + USB 2.0

    This web page lists both external harddrive types. You may need to scroll to the right to see both.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/1394/USB/EliteAL/eSATA_FW800_FW400_USB

     

    The latest the hard drive enclosures support the newer serial ata drives. The drive and closure that I list supports only older parallel ata.

  • 3. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    Thanks very much for your great advice. I know I could trash it, but there's something about this Mac (my first ever Apple product) that makes me want to hang on to it forever, if possible. If I can run iTunes in the background and get on the internet, thats all I need. I'll give your suggestions a shot and see what happens. I'll either reply at this post or send you a message. Thanks again,

    Randy

  • 4. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    Hello again. O.k...I have a glimmer of hope. I held down the option key then power on. This didn't bring up the startup manager. A blue screen with a circular "Reload" type of arrow, and a arrow to the right opened. No other icons (HD or otherwise)were on this blue screen. I tried clicking on the right arrow but nothing happened. I clicked the reload icon and then the right arrow again. Still nothing .(i.e"Click on your hd. Click on right arrow key".) That's where the glimmer of hope was...no smiley questionmark folder, and response to the commands you suggested. As far as the cd commands, the eject cd command gave me an error message, of sorts. Something to the effect of "not a valid command or command not understood". You get the picture. If the cd drawer won't open, I'm hoping to possibly reboot with the original install disk attached by USB in an external drive. I tried "eject cd" and "eject-cd"

    but nothing happened except the error message.

    Just a side note, on the base of the iMac it says 800mHz/256MB/60HD along with the serial number. Also, after resetting the RAM, it did restart.

    I really appreciate the help. After all...if it isn't a Mac, it's just anoter computer!


  • 5. Re: Dual problem...
    rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (5,360 points)

    A blue screen with a circular "Reload" type of arrow, and a arrow to the right opened.

    That's the startup screen.  That's what happens if the firmware ( software ) cannot find a device to boot from.  It looks for a bootable os & if it cannot find a bootable OS no icon will be displayed.

     

    As far as the cd commands, the eject cd command gave me an error message, of sorts. Something to the effect of "not a valid command or command not understood".

    Not sure about this.  Try these other commands.  maybe it's eject dvd

    maybe it's:

    eject dvd

     

    the "cd" should appear in the list of device, i'd think. Try what's close.  What about the left mouse button? 

     

     

    http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1812?viewlocale=en_US

     

    How to eject a cd from the internal cd drive:

    eject cd

     

    List of devices:

    devalias

     

    List of variables:

    printenv

     

     

    I'm hoping to possibly reboot with the original install disk attached by USB in an external drive.

    No!  ( highly unlikely,  Boot from a USB device is only supported for a few PPC computer. )

     

    You need a firewire cd/dvd drive.  Can adhock a cd/dvd drive into a firewire hd.

  • 6. Re: Dual problem...
    rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (5,360 points)

    A good thread on the iMac g4

     

    https://discussions.apple.com/message/20845227#20845227

     

     

    --------------------------------

     

     

    sometimes there is a small hole to the right of the dvd/cd slot (inside the slot) that can be pressed with a paper clip. 

     

    All the ways of ejecting.

     

    power off your machine.  hold down your left mouse button.  power on your machine.  This should eject the cd.

     

    Eject cd

    Here is a web page on twelve ways to eject the cd.

    seems like the page has gone away

    http://www.osxfaq.com/dailytips/01-2003/01-16.ws

     

    On a PowerPC-based Macintosh (but not an Intel-based Macintosh), you may use Open Firmware to eject a CD or DVD disc when normal methods for ejecting it have not succeeded.

    Immediately after the startup sound, press and hold the key combination Command-Option-o-f. Enter commands:

    eject cd

    mac-boot

     

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106752

     

    Eject CD/DVD Classic to X

    http://boredzo.org/blog/archives/2006-03-17/how-to-eject-a-cd

     

    Mac OS 10.4 Ejecting a CD or DVD when all else fails

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?path=Mac/10.4/en/mh1750.html

     

    There are several methods to eject a disc from the CD or DVD drive in a Power Mac G4.

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=88215

  • 7. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    I give up. Probably. I don't give up easily, but aside from gutting my IMac, that disk drive isn't opening. I've tried all recommended commands and now I get Can't Eject CD Device from firmware. I don't think it would be possible booting up  with the OS disk in an external CD drive. If it is, that's something else I'll need help with. I've seen YouTube videos about taking out the HD. The disk drive is right there, so maybe I'll give it a shot with a video camera rolling to serve as a visual reassembly guide. This is the biggest computer annoyance I've ever had. I wanted to put the OS disk in and reinstall. Now I'm contemplating Mac surgery. I think I'm out of options here.

  • 8. Re: Dual problem...
    rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (5,360 points)

    Time to learn about hardware repair.  You might try duck tape on the cd.  Once you take the machine apart, you will be able to get closer to the cd. Might give you more leverage.

     

    Robert

  • 9. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    Hi Robert,

              Thanks again for all your suggestions and time. My last thought (before operating) is to load a copy of Tiger OS startup disk on my LaCie HD and try booting via firewire. Is this feasible?

     

    Randy Allen

    http://www.printroom.com/pro/randypallen

  • 10. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    Like I said, I don't give up easy. I finally got the @$&#%! disk drive to open. First, powered on for about an hour with smiley question mark blinking. Then shut down .Next, powered up with the option key depressed. Once the startup screen showed up, I hit the right  arrow on screen which appeared to do nothing. Then I restarted while holding down F12 and the eject key simultaneously. Bigo... Out came the cd drawer! Now to boot up from the install disk to see if any life is still there.

  • 11. Re: Dual problem...
    rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (5,360 points)

    Great news! Your pictures look good.

     

    verify & repair your startup drive

    To verify & repair you file system on the startup drive, you will need to run disk utility from you installation DVD.

     

    This article  will tell you how to get to disk utility.  Once in a disk utility, you can go and attempt to recover the disk.

    http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1417


    To repair your startup drive, you will need to run disk utility from your startup DVD.
    Mac OS X 10.4: About the utilities available on the Mac OS X 10.4 Install DVD

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2055

     

    How to run disk utility from your startup DVD.

    1. Insert your  startup DVD  into your reader.  Power down your machine.  Hold down to the c key.  Power on your machine.  This will bootup your startup DVD.
    2. This will bring you to a panel asking you for your language.  Pick your language.

    3.          http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4015/4307180601_32c2a49b32.jpg
    4. You you come to the Install Mac OS panel.  Do not install.
    5. Click on Utilities menu item.  This will give you a pulldown list of utilities. http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2727/4307180743_16e069ea8e.jpg
    6. Click on the disk utility.
    7. You are now in disk utility.  Pick your disk.  Click on repair it should be on the lower right of the panel. http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4020/4307921456_2064c6612c.jpg
    8. Once the repair completes successfully, you should update your permissions.

    <

    Robert

  • 12. Re: Dual problem...
    Randy Allen Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    I'll drop you a note on how this pans out. My daughter has had this for a few years now and brought it back because it didn't work anymore. She's in another state and said she'd send the software back to me. I'm patiently waiting.

    Thanks again for the excellent help. I 'll see how it goes. There are some excellent videos on expanding the capabilities of this machine. If this is unsalvagable, I will take a shot at rebuilding with an upgrade.