Previous 1 2 Next 18 Replies Latest reply: Feb 23, 2013 12:27 PM by jamiedmc
jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

Hello,

I wonder if anyone can help me.

I have an old Powermac G4. 

On starting up, the chime sounds and the screen turns to grey and shortly after the apple symbol appears as per normal.

However, it then remains stuck on this screen and shortly after the fans (I assume its the fans) start making a very loud noise.

 

I purchased this computer second hand, from a company who were about to throw it away because of this problem.

At the time I called an apple engineer who came round and fixed the problem, as I remember fairly quickly.

The computer then worked fine for around 3 years.

I moved home recenly and transported the computer (safely and securely) in the back of the car.  However, on set up the problem had re-occured.

There are no start-up discs as the computer was destined for the rubbish bin, and if I can avoid calling out an engineer as I did previously then that would be great!

If anyone has any ideas on what I could attempt then I would be grateful.

Thanks in advance

Jamie D


PowerMac
Reply by BDAqua on Jan 11, 2013 6:26 PM Helpful
Hi Jamie, Did you reseat the Video card & RAM yet? Holding Option or alt key at bootup, does it show a boot choice? Tough without the Install disc, but some things to try... Does it boot to Single User Mode, CMD+s keys at bootup, if so try... /sbin/fsck -fy Repeat until it shows no errors fixed. (Space between fsck AND -fy important). Resolve startup issues and perform disk maintenance with Disk Utility and fsck... http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106214
Reply by BDAqua on Jan 12, 2013 10:33 AM Helpful
Yes, the 3/4 circle is refresh looking for boot devices, right arrow is boot from selected drive, HDD showing in middle is one good sign anyway. Do we get a spinning gray radian holding SHIFT key at bootup? Still not much to go on as far as the problem. Might be time to replace the PRAM Battery, 4 years is close to their lifespan, far less if ever without AC power, & can cause strange startup problems... http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Newer%20Technology/BAA36VPRAM/  Do you have another Mac around with Firewire? Does this one show a big floating FW symbol if you boot it into Target mode... http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1661

All replies

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    Hi Jamie,

     

    Did you reseat the Video card & RAM yet?

     

    Holding Option or alt key at bootup, does it show a boot choice?

     

    Tough without the Install disc, but some things to try...

     

    Does it boot to Single User Mode, CMD+s keys at bootup, if so try...

     

    /sbin/fsck -fy

     

    Repeat until it shows no errors fixed.

     

    (Space between fsck AND -fy important).

     

    Resolve startup issues and perform disk maintenance with Disk Utility and fsck...

     

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106214

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Hi BDAqua,

    Thank you for replying to my post.

    I have not reset the Video card or RAM yet or tried holding the option or alt key at boot up to see if it shows a boot choice. 

    I am going to do these things now.

    I will also see if it boots to Single User Mode as you suggest and then try /sbin/fsck -fy.

    I will let you know how I get on - fingers crossed!

    Thanks again for your help.

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Ok, I have reseated the video and RAM.

    I have tried to boot to single user model using CMD + S keys but still doesn't get past grey screen with apple on, and the loud fans kick in.

    I have also tried starting it up with the option key held down.  This brings up a blue screen with three icons.

    To the far left an arrow going anti clockwise, in the middle the icon for the Macintosh HD and to the right a single arrow pointing to the right.

    The arrow to the left does nothing just seems to refresh that screen.

    Clicking on the HD icon does nothing.

    Clicking on the arrow to the right takes it to the grey screen with the apple on it and there it gets stuck again and the fans start.

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    Yes, the 3/4 circle is refresh looking for boot devices, right arrow is boot from selected drive, HDD showing in middle is one good sign anyway.

     

    Do we get a spinning gray radian holding SHIFT key at bootup?

     

    Still not much to go on as far as the problem.

     

    Might be time to replace the PRAM Battery, 4 years is close to their lifespan, far less if ever without AC power, & can cause strange startup problems...

     

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Newer%20Technology/BAA36VPRAM/

     

    Do you have another Mac around with Firewire?

     

    Does this one show a big floating FW symbol if you boot it into Target mode...

     

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1661

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    I am glad that the HD drive showing is a good sign.

     

    I tried to boot with the shift key held, but no spinning grey radian, just the same grey screen.

     

    Thank you for the advice on the PRAM battery, I will try that too.

     

    I do have another MAC with Firewire.  Not sure how to boot it into Target mode, I will find out and then see if it shows the big floating FW symbol.

     

    Thanks again for your help.

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    Just hold t key down while powering up for Target mode.

     

    Unless you have...

     

    Firmware password protection in Mac OS X ...

     

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1352

     

    It would block usage of all the startup keys, like C, N, T, D, CMD+s, CMD+Option+p+r, CMD +v, Option boot will show a lock, and Shift, as well as booting from anything but the Hard Drive.

     

    Force Removing Password Protection

     

    1) Add or remove DIMMs to change the total amount of RAM in the computer.

     

    2) Then, the PRAM must be reset 3 times. (Command + Option + P + R).

     

    http://www.securemac.com/openfirmwarepasswordprotection.php

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Ok, thank you that has saved me some time.

    I don't have password protection in OS X so will give this a go.

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Yes....... have booted in Target mode and have the floating fire wire sign.

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    Great, now with a FW cable, the other Mac with FW should see that whole Mac as a big FW drive, so we can try repair or maybe some other things.

     

    What exactly is this other Mac & what OS is it running?

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Powerbook G4 OS 10.5.8

     

    I need to purchase a firewire lead as I don't seem to have any anymore.

     

    I have found a selection on Amazon and will order one tomorrow unless................very stupid question, please forgive my ignorance, but I have firewire to USB, will that do?  So that would be into the firewire port in one computer and into the USB on the other. 

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    Nope, FW to USB will not work at all...

     

    Assuming the PB is FW/400/6pin...

     

    http://eshop.macsales.com/Search/Search.cfm?Ntk=Category&Ns=P_Popularity|1&Ne=5000&N=7159&Ntt=firewire+1394+cables

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    Ok, thought not, thanks for the link.

     

    I Purchased a firewire lead today so am ready to go.

  • BDAqua Level 10 Level 10

    OK, anxious to hear how it goes.

  • jamiedmc Level 1 Level 1

    I will let you know. Going to have a go at the weekend when i have a bit more free time. Hoping for success.

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