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

Best Online Mac Repair service


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rexk

 
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I have an older Mac Pro that shows signs of software corruption. There is no Mac repair service in my area. What are the best, most reliable and reasonably priced online Mac repair sites?
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vansmith

 
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What do you mean by "online repair site"? Are you talking about some service that will remote into your machine and fix it?

What seems to be the problem? It's possible that we can help.

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rexk

 
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Yes, that is what I was asking about.

The problem is that, after a restart, Firefox and other software (online trading platforms, Excel, etc.) that I use function properly for a time, but then (especially if I leave and it goes idle in sleep), everything begins to slow down, hang up and not work. At this point, a restart will still recover performance, but not for long.

In addition, a message to the effect that there is no more space available for application memory. This notice disappears after a restart, but reappears after sleep mode. I have 4 gb ram and about 85% of 1 Tb of hard drive available. There is more memory installed that has not been functional for some time.

In a few minutes, I need to step away for awhile, so will watch for your reply but may not respond further for two hours or so. Thanks.
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Are you using all of that memory? It sounds like you're running out of memory which would explain the slow downs and why the machine picks up again after a restart. What does Activity Monitor say about your memory usage?

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rexk

 
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You seem to be right. After using the Activity Monitor while opening various apps I use, it is clear that all of the 4gb RAM is being used, before I reach my full normal activity.

Some time ago. I learned that only 8gb of the 16 gb RAM installed was functional. Trial and error moving of the memory cards proved that all of the RAM cards were functional, but that the logic board was able to engage only half (4) of the 2gb cards. This was confirmed by an Authorized Mac Repair dealer. Because a new logic board cost about 80% of the value of the computer, I have been living with the 8gb, and it has been enough. Today I discovered that now only 4gb is functional, and the Activity Monitor makes clear that that is not enough. I have located warrantied, used logic boards for
about $200. and am considering replacement. First I will reconfirm that all 8 of the 2gb memory cards are still functional. Any thoughts?
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Since $200 is way cheaper than a replacement machine it seems like that is your best choice.

I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .
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rexk

 
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New question.I was able to restore the system to 8gb RAM. I've determined that the upper riser holding 4 2gb memory cards does not get read by the logic board (a red light that lights only briefly upon opening on the lower riser stays lit on the upper riser); the lower riser with its 4 cards are now functional. I have removed and swapped risers in all configurations to confirm that all RAM and both risers are OK. Before ordering a replacement logic board, does anyone know of anything I can try to restore reception of the upper riser in the logic board? That would re-establish the 16gb RAM which are available.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexk View Post
I have an older Mac Pro that shows signs of software corruption. There is no Mac repair service in my area. What are the best, most reliable and reasonably priced online Mac repair sites?
If you're having a software issue…this is probably something you could fix yourself (with some help from Mac-Forums).

Theoretically…if it was a hardware issue MAYBE you would want to use a repair service…but most hardware issues can be done by the user…if we are just talking swapping food parts for bad parts.

You REALLY don't want to have to ship a BIG HEAVY Mac Pro to someone to repair/diagnose (especially if you can fix it). Depending how far you had to ship it…you could be looking at some SERIOUS shipping fees. Then add the repair fees.

But let's say you did want to ship the computer to a repair place (and don't mind paying the shipping). We would really need to know where you are located (at least what country you are in). You REALLY don't want to ship a big heavy Mac Pro internationally…plus Mac-Forums is a worldwide internet forum (we have members from all over)…so you could be from almost anywhere.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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rexk

 
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Thanks.
As you can see through this thread, the diagnosis has evolved today. I'm pretty sure that the basis of the problem is hardware (the logic board is only utilizing 8gb RAM from one (lower) riser, and not recognizing the 8gb available from the upper riser. Now using the Activity Monitor, I see that the numerous apps, Parallels, and trading platforms I routinely use consume the 8gb, and peak activity times need more RAM than that.
So, again, if no one has directions for a possible way to recover the use of the upper riser of four 2gb RAM cards, I will buy a functional logic board and hope it corrects the problem. I hope I can figure out the installation.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexk View Post
As you can see through this thread, the diagnosis has evolved today.
Yes I realize that. I was mostly replying to your original question/statement regarding "best online repair service".

Quote:
Originally Posted by rexk View Post
So, again, if no one has directions for a possible way to recover the use of the upper riser of four 2gb RAM cards, I will buy a functional logic board and hope it corrects the problem. I hope I can figure out the installation.
Yes...it does sound like you have a hardware (logic board) issue. Since via a lot of parts swapping on your part (nice job)...you seem to have proven that all of the ram is good...and both ram riser cards are good.

I really don't think that there is any way to get that upper riser card to work...since it's the upper riser card slot on the logic board that seems to be bad.

One thing I will mention...have you tried an NVRAM/PRAM reset? If not...never know...give it a try.

About NVRAM and PRAM

If the NVRAM/PRAM reset doesn't work...then installing a replacement working logic board would seem to be the best & least expensive solution. Like you already discovered...these can be VERY expensive (80% of the computers total value)...and many times really not worth it financially. But if you can a cheap one ($200) that works 100%...this would seem like the way to go.

I wanted to verify one thing...to make sure I understand things correctly. Are you saying that you have gotten the computer to recognize 8gig of installed ram...by having 4 x 2gig ram modules installed on the one riser card?

Thanks,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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rexk

 
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Yes, that is correct. Using either riser card in riser slot B, 8gb RAM is functional, regardless of whether the second riser card is in place in its slot A.

The only difference I see is that, for some reason, when one of the riser cards is in slot A, the red malfunction light stays lit on only the DIMM #2 spot, while when the other riser card is in slot A, all four DIMM red lights stay lit. This does not affect functionality.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rexk View Post
Yes, that is correct. Using either riser card in riser slot B, 8gb RAM is functional, regardless of whether the second riser card is in place in its slot A.

The only difference I see is that, for some reason, when one of the riser cards is in slot A, the red malfunction light stays lit on only the DIMM #2 spot, while when the other riser card is in slot A, all four DIMM red lights stay lit. This does not affect functionality.
Ok...thanks for verifying.

The reason why I wanted to verify this is...on the inside of the side-panel that is removed to get access to the inside of an early gen. Mac Pro's there are instructions on how to install the ram. Basically 2 matching DIMMS in the top card...then 2 matching DIMMS in the bottom card (proper slots)...etc. Maybe this is just for better speed purposes.

Apple doesn't really say that all ram placed on one riser card will or will not be recognized properly if the 2nd riser card is not used (or recognized properly in this case).

Anyway...here is another possible solution other than the logic board swap. The official max. ram for this computer from Apple is 16 gig (8gig/riser card). But the actual max. ram is 32gig (16 gig per riser card). So if you don't need more than 16gig of ram...this could be a solution (other than swapping logic boards). This would cost about $265 (4 x 4gig DIMMS all installed in the one good riser card).

Mac Pro Memory up to 128GB with Lifetime Warranty @ OWC

This would be more $$$ than the logic board swap (if you can get a good replacement logic board for $200 as mentioned before). But it would be easier than dismantling everything.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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rexk

 
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Yes, that would be an alternative. It probably won't cost less, eirher, because I had tentatively decided to let a local tech install the nogic board for $100. The downside risk is that there may be further failure of my existing logic board. However, installing and using a used logis board isn't without risk, either.

To review, the activity monitor is showing that 8GB of RAM is functional, and that the functional RAM is all in riser B. As the RAM is not in the recommended configuration, am not sure if the Ram is being utilized with maximum efficiency; it seems to take 4gb just to run Firefox and one (ETrade Pro) trading platform.

I'll check further into the viability of this approach. Thanks.
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pigoo3

 
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I only mentioned the 16ram on one riser card option as an alternative to swapping out the logic board (due to the extra cost of someone else doing it...or the hassle of doing it yourself).

For me...if I could find a good used replacement logic board for $200...I would definitely do this. Plus I would do it myself...so the final cost would still be $200. But $300 installed isn't too terrible either.

One other thing to consider. I have seen 1st generation Mac Pro's sell for as little as $350 on eBay (not often...usually they are around $450-$500)...and a few weeks ago I could have purchased a 1st gen. Mac Pro on my local Craig's List for $250.

Here's an e-Bay example for $349 (free shipping):

Apple Mac Pro 2006 2 x 2 66GHz Dual Core Xeon 250GB 2GB RAM MA356LL Warranty | eBay

You could purchase this...put your current ram in it...and BAMM...you got a fully operational Mac Pro with all your ram working. Plus you get some spare parts in case something else happens in the future.

Extra:

- power supply
- optical drive
- hard drive
- video card
- airport card
- ram riser cards
- fans
- cables
- etc, etc.

!!!!!!!

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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rexk

 
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Mine is an early 2008 2.8 Quad Core 3.1. I have 3 hard drives (total 2.5 TB) and the 16gb RAM. If I found a similar one to merge with mine for low $, I'd do it, but don't want to either go backwards on technology or spend too much on one as old as mine. Its just a matter of whether to nurse this along for another year for $200-300, or jump to a new or newer one. I'd like to wait awhile to take on the cost of the new one, plus its usually good the let things shake out awhile when a new model has been introduced.
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