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Apple Desktops Discussion of Apple's desktop machines including Mac Pro, iMac, Power Mac, and mini

New Mac Mini won't boot after long time stored


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juan

 
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Hello guys,

I bought an intel mac mini 1176 1GB RAM 2.0GHz at the end of 2008 and it's until now that I'm starting to use it.

I have it connected to a Pioneer Plasma monitor via DVI-DVI (Also tried DVI-HDMI), only other thing connected is a Microsoft Comfort Curve 2000 USB Keyboard, and the power cable.

Whenever i press the power button, it would turn the LED on for a couple of seconds and then start blinking steadily. the DVD drive will start to spin and then keep spinning slowly (or so it sounds like). I tried putting in the Install disk in so it's now stuck inside. The fan comes on (not that I could hear it, I can tell by the warm air blowing out the vent).

No signal to the monitor (it goes to sleep, and if I force it on it says NO INPUT SIGNAL). No chime or other sound other than the DVD spinning and reading.

I've tried, WIN ALT P R (APPLE OPTION P R), ALT (OPTION) alone, I've tried resetting the PMC, which is done by holding the power button for 5 seconds with the power cable disconnected, tried a little longer as I read that it may take more than 5 seconds.

I've opened it and checked t he CMOS battery (measures at 3.048V so it should be good), I reseated the memory slots, even exchanged their positions.

The only thing to try yet, are the memory modules one by one as I read that mac memory is flimsy and easy to fail. Hard to think about it on a computer stored on it's original packing. I'm doing this test tonight.

I'm new to mac (talk about a bad first impression) so any advice, even the most obvious one is welcome, as there maybe something easy I'm just missing.

Thanks in advance, for your help.

juan
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juan

 
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Hi,

after taking out each memory and fiddling with it, I determined there's one 512MB DIMM that makes the light blink.

So now I have the machine with just one 512MB memory stick and it turns ON to a steady led, some DVD activity but no video and no chime (I assume the chime comes from the internal speaker, I have no speakers attached)

So two questions now,

1) What memory and how much would the mac mini accept? Back at the time of purchase it was 2GB, however I may think that now may accept up to 4GB? What memory brand is recommended for this, as from what I've read Macs are really finicky about memory.

2) Would the fact that is connected to a 1080p TV Kind of monitor (even if it's through DVI-DVI) be a factor? I have another 1920x1200 monitor, which iI can try to use. I don't think it should make a difference.

Thanks in advance!

j
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chscag

 
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Your Mini will accept up to 3 GB of memory, however, Apple says only 2 GB. Which means you can use 2 x 1 GB PC2 5300 DDR2 SO-DIMMs (667 MHZ). Memory from Crucial or OWC is best.

As long as you connect it to a compatible monitor (DVI or VGA) it should work well.

Hard to say what could be wrong with your Mini. You let it sit around for two years without use which is never good for an electronic device. Also, your Mini according to the model number is a mid 2007 model. Did you buy it used?
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juan

 
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Thanks for the info!

I bought it brand new from CDW. I looked at my records and it was at the end of 2007, not 2008. So it's been 3 years sitting pretty on its box. (Which is all it's probably going to do anyhow). However, I have much older computers here that have been disconnected for longer and work without much, even with the CMOS batteries dead and all. :S

What's a compatible monitor? I have tried so far with a Samsung T260HD and a Pioneer Kuro Elite PRO-101FD. DVI-HDMI and DVI-DVI with no success.

Should the "chime" sound come out the speaker on the machine? or should it come out the line speakers? I'm still not sure if the machine is booting without video showing or if it's just staying there.
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chscag

 
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The POST chime is output from the speaker contained within the Mini. If you're not getting the chime that indicates the Mini is not booting.

Your Mini should be able to connect to any external monitor which has either a DVI or VGA input. (as I mentioned in my previous post)

It almost sounds like you have a bad logic board. (mother board)
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Also before trying anything else, maybe after thee years of storage the PRAM battery is dead. This is the type of replacement you need:-


NewerTech® Mac 3V PRAM Battery

Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!
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He says the PRAM battery is OK harry. I think he has other problems, however, I'm not that familiar with the innards of a Mini. I suspect maybe his logic board is bad.

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I've opened it and checked t he CMOS battery (measures at 3.048V so it should be good), I reseated the memory slots, even exchanged their positions.
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I agree with the logic board theory. Where did you have the mini stored for the past 3 years? Was it in a dry/cool place? And just out of curiosity why would you buy a computer just to have it sit for 3 years?
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Don't trust those metering gadgets.

Hang on to those original install discs like grim death! Using OS X.7 or later make a bootable USB thumb drive before running Installer!
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juan

 
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It was in it's own box on a safe place in my home office. I bought it for a project that did not materialize and now that I bought a new HT system I wanted to use it as a HTPC.

I took off one of the memory modules and it was the same, I swapped the other and the light went steady, but it still didn't chime or output any video.

I'm sending it to a tech here (I'm outside the US) to get it checked and so he can try known good memory to see if it would work or if I should make an iToilet ( Unofficial iToilet mod | bit-tech.net ) out of it

I measured the PRAM battery with a Fluke volt meter, hardly a metering gadget. I replaced the battery anyhow to no avail. Can't do the same for the memory as the memory here is hard to find and we sadly don't have the generous return policies that you have in the US.
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chscag

 
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I don't think the memory is the problem. A machine with bad memory modules will definitely tell you - beep, beep, beep, etc.

Do you feel like pulling the mini apart? If so, open it up and remove the hard drive from the machine. Try to boot it again with your original install DVD. Sometimes a machine will do strange things when the hard drive is dead. Sitting around for near three years could have caused the hard drive to develop "the sticky syndrome". If it's not the hard drive then it's probably a dead logic board.

Let us know.
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jcmendez51

 
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I had the same problem that you describe, but this was when I changed the core solo processor for a core duo in a mac mini (early 2006 model). After so many trials (Resetting PRAM, SMC, etc) I got back to life the mini when I left the bottom SIMM only (was 2GB, now only 1GB). Whenever I try to install the full 2 GB, it gets back to the failure behaviour. I dont think about bad memory, as I have swapped both SIMMS in the same bottom slot and they worked, but only one at a time, not the two together, but its better than nothing.
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juan

 
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Thank you for your input!

However I bit the bullet and sent it to a recommended repair tech (no apple stores down here) the logic board is damaged, suffice to say, I gave Apple a chance and came out wounded So you lost a probably loyal co-fan Back to PCs for me. I'm getting a Dell Zino for my TV. I'm not going into a rant because I'm pretty mad to have lost $799, and you'll clasify me as a troll, I know it's just one bad experience but it was my bad experience... and I have plenty of PC experience.

Thanks to all for everything!

See you back when they opensource OSX, which I thnk is a great operating system.
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Sorry for your troubles with the Mini and good luck with your new Dell. I don't, however, think you'll ever see OS X as open source.

Come back and visit sometime.
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