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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Feb 06, 2011
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    Question does turning my mac off from the mains damage it?
    So, i got my new imac! (horray) its about 4 weeks old and i love it! anyway, today, i accidently turned it off from the mains! eeek! luckily, i was only on the user select thing but im still rather nervous about it since my last computer, a pc, had its motherboard fried when the plug or whatever fused..so, could me turning my mac off from mains damage it in anyway? thanks!

  2. #2

    louishen's Avatar
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    Oct 22, 2007
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    shouldn't do any real harm, just like if the fuse on your house's main box goes, as long as the house's wiring isn't ancient there should be no spikes
    Member of the Month September 2008 & August 2012 | Found advice useful? use the rep system

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2010
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    Mid-2012 MBP (16GB, 1TB HD), Monoprice 24-inch second monitor, iPhone 5s 32GB, iPad Air 2 64GB
    Depends. If the Mac was in the middle of doing something (and it almost always is, even processes you don't actively know about), then sudden shutoffs can damage the directory, which can lead to a loss of data. The hard drive's heads also didn't get a chance to park themselves properly, so if the machine were mishandled immediately after that might also (conceivably) do some damage.

    Bottom line: most of the time when this sort of thing happens you'll be fine, but there's always some risk. A UPS or other battery-based backup is a good idea to prevent it (and for other reasons).

  4. #4

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Nambucca Heads Australia
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    Specs:
    Imac 27", 3.3GHz, 512 flash storage, 16GB memory, macOS Sierra.
    Agree with chas.

    Unwise practice that can cause corruption of the system software. Once under OS 9 and earlier if this happened, on reboot user would get message advising shut down was incorrec and how to go about using shut down from the Menu Bar.
    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!

  5. #5

    ClockworkWorld's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 16, 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    Bottom line: most of the time when this sort of thing happens you'll be fine, but there's always some risk. A UPS or other battery-based backup is a good idea to prevent it (and for other reasons).
    I highly recommend a battery backup for anyone with an iMac. (Or any other desktop for that matter... ) Power went out once when I was nearly done with some stuff for work that had taken me nearly 5 hours to do. I had to start all over again because even though I had saved before that point, it somehow wouldn't open my saved work after the power had come back, said it was corrupted. Bought a battery backup that night before going on. Ours lasts only 15 minutes. But that's 15 minutes after the power fails that we have to save what we were doing and shut it down right!
    Late 2010 iMac 27 inch  2.93GHz i7 16GB RAM 2TB HDD
    2011 Macbook Pro 17 inch Glossy  2.3GHz Quad-core i7 8GB RAM 750GB HDD

  6. #6

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
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    Specs:
    Imac 27", 3.3GHz, 512 flash storage, 16GB memory, macOS Sierra.
    Problems with battery backups is how infrequently mains power fails when on the computer. Personally has happened to me only once in over twenty years and lost no data thank goodness!
    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!

  7. #7

    ClockworkWorld's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 16, 2010
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    True!! It's not common at all! But... losing that much work in one split second, made it very much worth it to me, even if it never happens again! Words can't describe how furious I was at that situation

    (Edit: It also made me an absolute nut about how often I back up my files )
    Late 2010 iMac 27 inch  2.93GHz i7 16GB RAM 2TB HDD
    2011 Macbook Pro 17 inch Glossy  2.3GHz Quad-core i7 8GB RAM 750GB HDD

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