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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    Pleeeeez help - grey death!
    I have an old G4 powermac / imac (bought second hand/no disks ) osx:
    10.5.8
    powermac 6,1
    powerpc G4 (3.3)
    processor 1 GHz
    memory 1.5 GB DDR SD RAM
    cpu's 1
    version 4
    Boot rom
    version 4.5.9f1

    all of a sudden when we switch on we get a blank grey screen and nothing else ! Tried re-setting PRM ( hope that's right) + tried holding down shift key on start up, but nothing ! It was working fine, this is out of the blue, no new software installed or anything.

    Have tried unplugging power cable/ mouse and keybaord usb cables, but makes no difference

    Have bought a boxed version of osx 10.4 bought new ( on e bay) and happy to instal that if it will resolve this issue. Nothing vital we need to save on this comp - it is used purely for internet surfing......but tried runnign the disk and can't see anything on screen !

    Not computer savy , so would appreciate any advice in idiot proof style language.

    Thanks........

  2. #2

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    34,265
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Can you hear any spinning sounds coming from the hard drive? Is the hard drive making any "weird" noises...such as grinding or clicking?

    From what you describe...it sounds like your hard drive may be dead. This is only a guess based on the info so far.

    You could try booting the computer from the OS 10.4 disks you have...just to see if the computer will boot properly (don't install the OS at this point).

    - Nick

    p.s. Is there anything on the hard drive that you are in fear of losing if the HD was erased/reformatted or the OS was reinstalled?
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    thanks for quick reply........yes, it seems to be making all the right noises, nothing unusual, you get the boot up sound as well, but it's a blank screen......did insert new os cd, but can't actually view anythgin on screen so have taken it out....nothing to save/ happy to reinstal new os even though its an earlier version, but dont know how to ! thanks

  4. #4

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    34,265
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by Sabrina2000 View Post
    thanks for quick reply........yes, it seems to be making all the right noises, nothing unusual, you get the boot up sound as well, but it's a blank screen......did insert new os cd, but can't actually view anythgin on screen so have taken it out....nothing to save/ happy to reinstal new os even though its an earlier version, but dont know how to ! thanks
    If you're not concerned about losing anything on the hard drive. Just boot from those OS install disks you have (hold down the "c" key when booting)...and then follow the on screen instructions.

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

  5. #5


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    okay, will try that and report back

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    quick question - do we insert the cd before swithcing off? and then boot by clicking on C?

  7. #7


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    we've tried booting and holding down the C button but still nothing - blank screen. We inserted the cd, then shut down, the started up whilst depressing the C button constantly - blank screeen.....how do we get it going? thanks

  8. #8


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    Still no luck - can't see the OS cd when its in - tried booting/clicking C but nothing - still grey screen

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Dec 11, 2010
    Posts
    1,450
    Sounds like your screen or your motherboard are dead.

    I'd try starting in Target Disk mode and copy all your important files.

    Do you know if you had remote access On? If so you could try VNC or ssh to control the computer.

    If you can't get it fixed for less than $150, it's not worth it, IMHO.

  10. #10

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    34,265
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by gsahli View Post
    Sounds like your screen or your motherboard are dead.

    I'd try starting in Target Disk mode and copy all your important files.
    You probably need to explain how to do this.

    - Most folks have never heard of "Target Disk Mode"...let alone how to do it.
    - To do this two computers are needed...and we don't know if the OP has a second Macintosh computer.
    - And both computers need "firewire".

    Quote Originally Posted by gsahli View Post
    If you can't get it fixed for less than $150, it's not worth it, IMHO.
    The OP's computer is probably only worth about $50-$75 bucks (at best)...so spending $150 (or a little less) probably isn't worth it.

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

  11. #11


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    it's making all the right noises at every stage, inclduing when the cd is in, but it's consistently grey ! Is this the end? Only had this comp around 6 months and paid 100 for it......don't know how to start in target disk mode or how to do anything else as long as the screen is blank! could it be worth getting this to a genius bar??
    oh, yes - we do have a second imac - a more modern one with the aluminium frame/stand , but no fire wire....if we get a fire wire could we do something that way? and what/which fire wire do we need to buy? thanks anyway...

  12. #12

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    34,265
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by Sabrina2000 View Post
    Only had this comp around 6 months and paid 100 for it......
    Yeah...used computers in the UK do run a lot more expensive than here in the United States.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sabrina2000 View Post
    ...could it be worth getting this to a genius bar??
    I seriously seriously doubt it. This computer is around 8 years old...and some of the employees at the Apple Store (Genius Bar)...have probably never even seen this model computer. Plus what they're going to charge you to troubleshoot it may be more than it's worth (or a significant portion of it's worth).

    You said you have had this computer for like 6 months...was it working all that time...and only "died" recently?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sabrina2000 View Post
    oh, yes - we do have a second imac - a more modern one with the aluminium frame/stand , but no fire wire....if we get a fire wire could we do something that way? and what/which fire wire do we need to buy? thanks anyway...
    If your 2nd computer does not have firewire...then it doesn't have firewire. You can't "get" firewire for a computer that doesn't have it.

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

  13. #13


    Member Since
    Dec 11, 2010
    Posts
    1,450
    About Target Firewire mode:
    How to use and troubleshoot FireWire target disk mode

    If you were asking about which firewire cable to get, get the one that matches the firewire ports on each computer.

  14. #14


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    is there a name for the fire wire ? It'll connect to imac ( bought new Jan 2010). Sorry, we really are computer illiterate and need idiot proof step by step instructions....
    woudl apple genius bar be abel to sort it out if we took it in there?
    also, what does fire wire achieve? will it enable us to fix the computer?

  15. #15


    Member Since
    Feb 07, 2011
    Posts
    48
    yes, the computer worked perfectly throughout the 6 months and only died at a precise moment in time last week, just like that, out of the blue !

    have got a genius bar ( free I think) slot booked tomorrow morning and will be along to see what the genius says.......will report back. Thanks for input - didn't read all the replies before my last post.

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