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Internal drive slow, externals work fine

Internal hard drive became super slow to startup, (over 5 minutes). Also any task took longer, (about 10 times longer.)

Zapped pram, rebuilt permissions, and repaired disk, no improvement.

Disk utility, and techTool both reported OK, but took forever to run the tests.

Replaced internal drive with new, same results.

Everything is fine when starting from a cloned system on any external drive. (firewire,usb,flash, all work fine.)

I now suspect the HD cable, HD controller, or power supplies.

Any idea what to check next?


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I've been running this g5 as a backup since reporting the internal drive failure. It works fine with the external drive...

I never went further, but I suspect its the power supply, or the cable that causes the internal hd to be so slow.



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Soluzione Prescelta

This may be caused by failing capacitors. Examine the cans on the logic board for swelling and or corrosion and let us know your results.

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The iMac G5 is prone to blown capacitors. This is typically the problem on many iMac G5s.

To make sure the caps aren't bad, get an ESR meter and check the caps. You may need to scrape the conformal coating off of the board but it is possible to access the leads for the caps. If you can, desolder the caps and check them off of the board; bad caps can screw up in-circuit reading.

As far as the tolerance goes, it's best to rely on the manufacturer datasheet. Good ESR meters generally include a ESR chart, but this is approximate.

If you replace the caps and it's slow, the hard drive is failing. As a general rule, these drives fail in 4-5 years. Many drives live past this, but there's no guarantee how long it will last beyond 4-5 years. It's a good practice to retire older drives with higher hours before they fail, since you can move the drive to another system that's less critical.

If you continue having problems, just replace the system. The iMac G5 is a piece of crap as a whole. They are prone to bad caps, excessive temperatures and display TAB problems. All of this is compounded by a TDMS panel, which is nearly impossible to find and difficult to replace since the machine looks for an Apple display EDID (without an injector). Apple has stopped selling parts for these machines years ago, so whatever is left is generally on life support and is prone to CCFL backlight burnouts or higher TAB failure rates.

From the beginning, the G5 iMac was never very good. They were fine early on but degraded quickly as they aged. ANY surviving machines will fail due to caps or display issues, given a few more years. I'd get a Intel iMac and cut your losses on this one.

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My first thought. Hard drive has been replaced, and a virgin system installed. same result. External drives work fine with the previously cloned system, and a virgin install. (both Tiger, and SL work fine on the externals.)


Started with a new HD and fresh tiger install. Same failure.Erased drive and fresh install SL. Failed again. Booted from externals, all good.


Cellers is just having an off night. He'll return to his kind loving self after his PMS is over ;-)


AB - Please remember that Nick is 15 years old but does take constructive criticism very well


I wonder if Steve Jobs got bullied in High School, it would be very fitting


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Mike sarà eternamente grato.
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