iMac boot problem
Hi. I have a 1 1/2 year old iMac, with Tiger OS X. When I turn it on, it comes up to the boot screen, with the spinning gear, and just sits there. I have tried everything that I can find to do, including booting from DVD, PRAM reset, reinstalling operating sytem(archiving my settings and files), disk repair, and booting to an external hard drive (Western Digital 320gb USB). Nothing works. The next step seems to be erasing the hard drive, and reinstalling the operating system, although I don't really know if that will work, if the hard drive is damaged. I have some files that I really don't want to lose, but it's not a terrible thing if i do lose them.
Any help is greatly appreciated. (I'm not an experienced Mac person, so please keep your replies in layman's terms) :D .
Welcome to Mac-forums, BauerHaus.
If you have tried everything you say you did there isn't much left for you to try to get it to work. I think that perhaps the Archive and Install imported in your new OS install a serious corruption that prevents it from working correctly.
The only thing left would be to zero all the data from your hard drive and try a reinstall (boot from the restore disk, go to the menubar and choose Disk Utility -> Erase tab - there should be something in the Security Options, I believe, about a long and deep erase of the hard drive) but that will obviously erase all your user files and settings.
If reinstalling the operating system this way doesn't fix anything, my guess is that your problem is indeed hardware related and nothing you can do with software could fix this problem.
I would then suggest you send it in for repairs, sadly enough.
Here's a simple idea that might just work. Hold down the option key I think it is at start up. And select the drive you want as the startup drive. It worked for a friend in the past. It's a long shot but worth a shot.
And also have you held down the D (I think) key at startup for the hardware diagnostic test. Run it and see what it tells you. That should point out if the error is hardware related.
Apart from that MHC (the above poster) really summed up things quite well. But I will see if you could install OS X into the external drive, boot from that, transfer all your wanted files from the internal drive to the external one. Then Zero all the data on the internal drive (will take ages) as said above and load OS X onto it. Then you can if it works just copy all your data back from the external to the internal. it's a long way around but it might be the only option you have.
Thanks for all the input so far. i guess my next thing is to try the erase and install, then if that doesn't work, I'll try a new hard drive.
One more thing.....do y'all think my install disk might be bad?
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