5 Replies Latest reply: Aug 27, 2009 1:14 PM by rccharles
dscruggs Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
We have an old iMAC that we use as a sever. It stopped booting yesterday. I put in the test disk that came with the computer. It ran sucessefully. I booted it into OS 9 and it worked.

The server is using an OSX 10.4.11 apple server software.

Trying to boot from the hard drive results in the screen going gray with the apple icon and a spinning icon. It never completes the boot process.

I have disk warrior and tied to boot from it to check out the hard drive. I did not work. I think this mac has a cd rom read write and my copy of disk warrior is a DVD.

I tried to boot from the OS X install disk, but it tried to read the disk and spit it out. Again, I think it is drive compatibility problems.

I tried to boot from an external DVD drive. With a USB connection, holding down the option key resulted in in both the internal hard drive coming and the external drive shown on the screen. But, when I tried to boot from the external hard drive, it did not work.

I tried disk warrior and the install disk for OS 10.4. both did not work.

I tried the external drive using a Firewire connection. Holding down the option key, resulted in the external drive not being displayed on the screen.

I have the following connection.

Question 1 - Can the PARM battery cause the iMAC to not Boot?

Question 2 - Can the PARM confirguration cause the Firewire port to not boot?

Question 3 - How can I make a CD ROM boot disk compatible with OS 10.4?

Thanks

iMAC G3, Mac OS X (10.4.11)
  • Allan Jones Level 7 Level 7 (33,140 points)
    Some Macs have boot problems when the PRAM battery is dead or even weak. However, the problems usually don't show up unless the computer has been off wall power, which effectively delivers the coup de grâce to a weakened battery.

    A PRAM zap (hold command + option + p +r at boot and continue holding teh combo until you hear two additional startup chimes) will reset the PRAM and uslaly clean up ant confusion the failing battery induced.

    However, the problems could be worse. G3 iMacs seem to be failing at a noticeable rate often due to the PAV board dying from heat. We have a 400DV (Summer 2000) that I upgraded with proper firmware, a larger HD, 512MB RAM, and Panther. It was doing shutdowns occasionally consistent with the PAV board getting tired, hot, or both. When I tried to upgrade to Tiger (an experiment in FWTDM), the computer did another shutdown during the install and now will only boot from its OS9 partition, and could not boot from any OSX retail install CDs I have. I completely wiped the OSX partition and it still doesn't boot an OSX CD.

    So you could be seeing the last days of that unit.
  • rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (6,655 points)
    Why don't you hold down the shift key & boot. This will force diagnostics at boot time.

    What OS is it booting now? Might have to hold down the x key to boot into x first.


    Trying to boot from the hard drive results in the screen going gray with the apple icon and a spinning icon. It never completes the boot process.

    Could be a corrupt OS.

    I have disk warrior and tied to boot from it to check out the hard drive. I did not work. I think this mac has a cd rom read write and my copy of disk warrior is a DVD.

    I tried to boot from the OS X install disk, but it tried to read the disk and spit it out. Again, I think it is drive compatibility problems.

    I tried to boot from an external DVD drive. With a USB connection, holding down the option key resulted in in both the internal hard drive coming and the external drive shown on the screen. But, when I tried to boot from the external hard drive, it did not work.

    USB booting isn't support on the iMac PPC.
    I tried disk warrior and the install disk for OS 10.4. both did not work.

    Was it a CD?
    I tried the external drive using a Firewire connection. Holding down the option key, resulted in the external drive not being displayed on the screen.

    Some firewire drives do not support booting. What make & model of firewire drive.

    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

    How to eject a cd from the internal cd drive:
    eject cd

    List of devices:
    devalias

    List of variables:
    printenv

    ---------------------
    Resetting your Mac's PRAM and NVRAM
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1379

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

    I have the following connection.

    Question 1 - Can the PARM battery cause the iMAC to not Boot?

    One some machines. Doesn't seem to bother my machine.

    Question 2 - Can the PARM confirguration cause the Firewire port to not boot?

    Question 3 - How can I make a CD ROM boot disk compatible with OS 10.4?

    Tiger came on DVD. You had to pay extra to get a cd replacement from Apple.

    Message was edited by: rccharles
  • dscruggs Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Tried several other procedures and have found out the following.
    The computer passes all test on the test disk.
    Computer can boot from the slot cd rom drive. I used the original OS 9 install disk.
    Can run the Dis Utility from the install disk OS 10.3 Found some permissions bad and corrected it.
    From the install disk, the software wants to reinstall OS 10.3 not boot for the install disk.
    Disk Warrior will not run from external DVD drive. Although using the USB cable, the option depressed at start up will show an icon of Disk Warrior. But disk Warrior will not boot. I get the gray screen with the apple icon and a spinning loading icon.
    Will change the PARM battery tomorrow and try again.
    The only external connection attached during this testing is the Keyboard and external DVD drive.
  • Allan Jones Level 7 Level 7 (33,140 points)
    Disk Warrior will not run from external DVD drive. Although using the USB cable, the option depressed at start up will show an icon of Disk Warrior. But disk Warrior will not boot.


    As rccharles said, you cannot boot that Mac from a USB-connected drive. FireWire drives are bootable.

    Will change the PARM battery tomorrow and try again.


    FWIW, it's "PRAM" for "parameter random access memory." The store clerk may not make a connection otherwise.
  • rccharles Level 5 Level 5 (6,655 points)
    Here is a picture of the battery that you need.
    http://eshop.macsales.com/item-specials/Newer%20Technology/BAA36VPRAM/


    The second article in this series has information on replacing the battery on a slot loader:
    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=2584291

    Replacing a slot loader battery.
    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=7871692&#7871692