iMac grey screen crisis, is the hard drive dead or corrupt?

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Hello everyone

I'm sorry my first post starts with a help request! I've worked with Macs for over 20 years and to be fair this is the first time I've needed help. I have a 2009 Intel Imac aluminium and this is the nightmare so far…

I got home and powered up my mac last night, at the same time I tilted the screen slightly which tugged the power lead and cut off the power. The mac was about 1 or 2 seconds into powering up.

I restarted and it got as far as the grey screen with the apple logo and spinning grey wheel. I left it for about 20mins but this is as far as it would boot

Next I tried a PRAM reset which made no difference. Then I tried a safe boot. This gets as far as the grey bar coming on screen but the bar doesn't progress and the mac shuts down after about 4/5 mins.

Next I booted up from the disk utility CD. I tried a verify which wouldn't complete and said the drive needed to be repaired. I tried repair and that wouldn't complete either and said the drive needs to be restored.

Next I tried the Hardware check CD which checked everything through as ok, but I believe the hardware check doesn't actually include the operation of the hard drive?

This has created another problem in that I can't eject the Hardware CD with my wireless keyboard.

Fortunately, I have an Imac at work, so today I've created an external boot drive from my system install CD. Hopefully, this should let me boot up the mac, eject the CD and see the internal drive to copy some files. I've also got a copy of Disk Warrior on the external boot drive.

I've read a few posts on various forums but I just wanted to check that I am going through the right procedures and doing the right things? Any help or advice would be gratefully appreciated

Thanks Rob
 

pigoo3

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2011 17" MBP 2.2ghz, 16gig ram, OS 10.11.6
Assuming your computer is running OS 10.7 or newer. Reboot your computer into the Recovery Partition (command + r during startup). Launch Disk Utility…and repair the disk. See if this helps.

- Nick
 
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27" iMac (mid 2011), MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015), iPad 2, iPhone 5s. all with latest OS
it loads the built in recovery disk and has connected to Apple for restore. It now seems to be completely unresponsive.. just a grey screen
 
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If you can access Recovery, go to Utilities and run Repair Disk. If it won't do that the drive may have failed completely.
 
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thanks but I have done all this, even reinstalled the OS. It has fixed it for a few days and then it crashes again.
I have several permissions not right every time i verify them and fix them. Is this related?
 
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Maybe your HDD is on the way out.
 

Slydude

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There is a distinct possibility / probability that the hard drive is dying. The permissions issues might or might not be playing a part in this but right now it's the dying drive that's most important.

There's no way to predict exactly when the drive will fail. Your best course going forward is to do the following:
1. Backup anything important and keep the backup current.
2. Purchase a new hard drive.
 

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