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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Aug 14, 2012
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    Hard drive S.M.A.R.T status failing after brand new HD swap?
    I was running 10.7.4 i happened to check my disk utility and it said my other hard drive was failing. No big deal. Backed everything up and bought a new Seagate 1TB 7200RPM 32MB cache. Everything was working great. Went to bed while it upgraded to 10.8. When i went to check on it today it's status was failing. Now this is aggravating. Anyone think its just a fluke with the thermal sensor? Im using an iMac late 2011 21.5 i5.

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
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    The hard drives used in the Mid 2011 iMac 21.5" and 27" machines are proprietary. The heat sensor, firmware, and cable connector are all designed specific to those models. I don't understand why you're swapping the hard drive out yourself unless your machine is no longer in warranty or extended Apple care?

  3. #3


    Member Since
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    I open this thing up every 6 months to clean out the dust. I dont like to go to apple, because everytime i have taken my products there they tell me my warranty doesnt cover it and try to make me pay for it. I used to work for them. I'm an IT, but this is just confusing me. Ive never encountered an issue like this.

  4. #4

    chscag's Avatar
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    It shouldn't be confusing. The hard drives used in those machines are proprietary, plain and simple. If they're not replaced with the exact same drive, problems will occur. You can do a Google search and read more about it.

    Watch this You Tube Video: LINK

  5. #5

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Evidently, OWC now has some sort of adapter for this, but they don't sell it outside of their "turnkey" program (i.e. you send them the iMac, they install it and ship it back).

    Not sure if you're interested, but if you get tired of hearing your fans spinning full-tilt or with playing around with fan control software, have a look...

    OWC iMac Turnkey Program Extended to 2011 Models. | Other World Computing Blog
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  6. #6


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sondra.Goller View Post
    I open this thing up every 6 months to clean out the dust. I dont like to go to apple, because everytime i have taken my products there they tell me my warranty doesnt cover it and try to make me pay for it. I used to work for them. I'm an IT, but this is just confusing me. Ive never encountered an issue like this.
    The 2011 iMac is special in this regard. If not a year old or is under AppleCare, you should have Apple replace the drive under warranty.

    With 2010 iMacs, the brand has to match (WD must replace WD; Seagate must replace Seagate) but the 2011 must have the Apple firmware or the OWC hardware solution.

    The only other alternative is to use an SSD. Then there are a pair of wires that can be shorted out to disable the fans (Apple does this, too if an SSD is the only drive).

  7. #7


    Member Since
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    i'm also having concerns over mac's quality control with their harddrives, i see that mid 2011 seagate 1tb drives were recalled. I have a late 2010 21.5 imac and just had the disk utility telling me i have SMART failing in the harddrive - my old powerpc G5 is still going strong, and this newer model cant even last 2 years - poor performance for Apple! i have googled my particular model and it looks like there are a lot of complaints out there. It only happened after upgrading to Mountain Lion from Lion - coincidence probably.
    I have spoken to a qualified apple repair place and they did tell me - as per chscag - that the heat sensor is the bug bear if you try and replace the drive yourself, and they have to do a little "work-around" to avoid the fan issues. 1.5hrs of labour plus the replacement drive......i'm a little miffed to say the least.

  8. #8

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greygloss View Post
    i'm also having concerns over mac's quality control with their harddrives, i see that mid 2011 seagate 1tb drives were recalled. I have a late 2010 21.5 imac and just had the disk utility telling me i have SMART failing in the harddrive - my old powerpc G5 is still going strong, and this newer model cant even last 2 years - poor performance for Apple! i have googled my particular model and it looks like there are a lot of complaints out there. It only happened after upgrading to Mountain Lion from Lion - coincidence probably.
    Of course it's coincidence. Purely coincidence. It's probably worth mentioning that Apple doesn't make Seagate's hard drives. Seagate makes them, though they do have custom firmware for Apple on them.

    As for myself, I have a mid-2010 iMac and my 1TB Seagate drive is still going strong. I actually replaced it with a 3TB drive recently, but the old is in an external case. Passed a "long" SMART check before I popped it out. No complaints here. Zero. And I'm more partial to WD's drives.

    I have spoken to a qualified apple repair place and they did tell me - as per chscag - that the heat sensor is the bug bear if you try and replace the drive yourself, and they have to do a little "work-around" to avoid the fan issues. 1.5hrs of labour plus the replacement drive......i'm a little miffed to say the least.
    This is only true of the 2011 models. If you have a mid-2010 iMac (there was no "late" 2010 iMac), then this doesn't apply to you at all. You can replace the drive in the 2010 models with off-the-shelf models, though it has to be the same brand to accommodate a cable that plugs into the drive and differs from one make to the next.

    Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
    ------
    Links: Onyx | EasyFind | Apple Hardware Test | How to test your hard drive | The Safe Mac Adware Removal Guide | Uninstall MacKeeper
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    Lifeisabeach - Mac-Forums Member of the Month June 2009, Feb 2012, and March 2013.

  9. #9

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
    Of course it's coincidence. Purely coincidence. It's probably worth mentioning that Apple doesn't make Seagate's hard drives. Seagate makes them, though they do have custom firmware for Apple on them.
    Agreed. And quality control over hard drives, in general, has gone downhill once again now that the warranties are back to 1-3 years. Funny how that works - particularly for Seagate.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  10. #10

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    I had a Brand NEW bought from CompUSA Seagate 120GB drive fail SMART right out of the packing! Took it back and CompUSA replaced it and the replacement worked and still works in my G4 Tower.

  11. #11

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
    Agreed. And quality control over hard drives, in general, has gone downhill once again now that the warranties are back to 1-3 years. Funny how that works - particularly for Seagate.
    Yeah, I've developed a pretty dim impression of Seagate's quality just from reading around. Well not to mention that the only drive that has ever failed on me was a Seagate GoFlex.

    WD seems to be on top of their game. Their Raptor line was cutting edge for speeds, spinning at an unheard of 15k rpm. Just a few days ago, I caught this interesting article:
    WD aims for high-capacity helium-filled hard drives by 2013 | Electronista

    Increased capacity? Higher reliability? Lower temps? Faster speeds? Lower energy usage? Sounds too good to be true but it makes sense. I hope they do pull this off.

    Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
    ------
    Links: Onyx | EasyFind | Apple Hardware Test | How to test your hard drive | The Safe Mac Adware Removal Guide | Uninstall MacKeeper
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    Lifeisabeach - Mac-Forums Member of the Month June 2009, Feb 2012, and March 2013.

  12. #12

    Stretch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwa107 View Post
    Agreed. And quality control over hard drives, in general, has gone downhill once again now that the warranties are back to 1-3 years. Funny how that works - particularly for Seagate.
    I don't trust Seagate any more. Not since they released a batch of 1TB drives with faulty firmware back in 2008. They gave PC users a program to update the firmware, but only on internal drives. Anyone using one of those drives as an external or in/with a Mac were out of luck. After that, I've only bought Western Digital drives.
    Blog and Photo Gallery: http://philolin.me/

    Currently running OS X 10.10

  13. #13

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stretch View Post
    I don't trust Seagate any more. Not since they released a batch of 1TB drives with faulty firmware back in 2008. They gave PC users a program to update the firmware, but only on internal drives. Anyone using one of those drives as an external or in/with a Mac were out of luck. After that, I've only bought Western Digital drives.
    Same here, except I switched to Hitachi after getting three sequential WD drives that had noise and vibration issues (each, a warranty replacement).

    I have poo-pooed Hitachi in the past, but right now I have a 500GB 2.5" and 2 1TB 3.5" drives and they have all been running silently and without issue for 2 years now. Very pleased with them.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

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