3 Replies Latest reply: Dec 8, 2012 5:36 AM by Thomas Bolingbroke
Thomas Bolingbroke Level 1 (5 points)

OK, My iMac 21" Late 2009 has been acting weird. Won't go into detail (as my question is about something else) but despite repairing, reinstalling I can't get it to a state where I'm happy with it. I've looked at replacing the internal drive but this appears to be complicated or is likely to be expensive. So I've decided to use my external clone as the main drive.


For some time I've been doing a daily clone (CC Clone) to an exteranl Iomega eGO 500gb firewire drive. Normally I don't shut down the iMac, I put it to sleep when I leave it and wake it up when I come back. On average I would reboot once or twice a month.


1. Is this sustainable? Using my FW drive as my 'main' drive? Or is this really a temporary solution?

2. I'm now cloning the external to the internal. Files and applications appear to be OK (and Disk Utility / Disk Warrior says disk appears to be OK). This is probably stupid, I know. Should I be cloning to a third?

3. I have an identical Iomega 500gb external drive, but these have 1 FW800 and 1 FW400 ports, and 1 only FW800 port on the iMac. Obviously cloning from the FW800 connected drive to the other via FW400 is going to be slower, but ... Are there any downsides to using two speeds of FW on one system?


Thanks for any ideas / suggestions

Mac OS X (10.7.5)
  • ds store Level 7 (30,325 points)

    Thomas Bolingbroke wrote:


    Is this sustainable? Using my FW drive as my 'main' drive?


    On a Late 2009 iMac it sure is, as long as the internal drive still works to send sensor data to OS X to tone down the fans.


    And more unfortunately, when the iMac gets no sensor information via that cable, the heat exhaust fans kick into permanent high gear, so that cable must be connected.


    http://blog.macsales.com/2751-proprietary-cable-can-put-the-brakes-on-upgrading- late-09-imacs


    http://blog.macsales.com/10146-apple-further-restricts-upgrade-options-on-new-im acs




    When the drive dies you'll have to take the machine to Apple for a drive replacement (read the links why), however if you wait too much longer Apple throws up their hands and say they don't have compatible drives for your machine and suggest you buy a new iMac instead.


    It's because Apple tends to carry parts for more recent machines and not older ones, so ask them first.


    Your iMac has SATA2 at 3Gb/s, newer drives and computers are SATA3 at 6Gb/s.



    So you can continue like you are and place all the wear and tear on the external drive clones, this way the internal drive will last considerably longer "talking" to calm down the fans. Also the clones will make it easy to move to a new machine when the Late 2009 iMac does finally die.


    Your machine is 4 years old, it might last another 1-2 years before something else goes on it, like the video card for instance.


    I don't see a problem running just like you are until the internal drive fails and forces your hand, by then you would likely consider buying a new machine instead of wasting money having that one repaired by Apple and their outrageous fees.

  • Thomas Bolingbroke Level 1 (5 points)

    Thanks very much for your detailed reply. Very helpful. Can you answer my Q about FW drives?

  • Thomas Bolingbroke Level 1 (5 points)

    I hoping someone can help me with my continuing problems with my iMac (late 2009). I continue to experience kernal panics when doing Finder activities. (CC Clone; Time Capsule backups; simple saving of multiple files to an external disk.  These occurs regardless if I'm booting from the internal or external drives. When they occur they cause problems with disk files which need to be repaired using DiskUtility and DiskWarrior. Often Permissions need fixing as well.


    In Console I'm seeing continued 'crashes'  related to PhotoStreamAgent (and failures to create legacy files and crash reports; etc). See:


    12/8/12 2:33:58.981 PM ReportCrash: Saved crash report for PhotoStreamAgent[298] version ??? (???) to /Users/xxx/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/PhotoStreamAgent_2012-12-08-143358_Fe thers-4.crash

    12/8/12 2:33:58.986 PM ReportCrash: Removing excessive log: file://localhost/Users/xxx/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/PhotoStreamAgent_2012 -12-08-143021_Fethers-4.crash

    12/8/12 2:33:58.987 PM ReportCrash: Failed to create legacy file link for: file://localhost/Users/xxx/Library/Logs/DiagnosticReports/PhotoStreamAgent_2012 -12-08-143358_Fethers-4.crash at: /Users/xxx/Library/Logs/CrashReporter/PhotoStreamAgent_2012-12-08-143358_Fether s-4.crash, error: 13 Permission denied

    12/8/12 2:33:58.989 PM ReportCrash: Failed to write crash history to file://localhost/Users/xxx/Library/Application%20Support/CrashReporter/PhotoStr eamAgent_86DE2572-EE26-5D7B-8E5B-BE7E880F787A.plist.


    I've reinstalled Lion a number of times (Using Disk Utility) and tried to install the 10.7.5 combo updater over top, but that 'failed', without an explanation of why.


    I'm at my wits end. Can someone suggest what I should be doing?