Model A1311 / Late 2009 / 3.06 or 3.33 GHz Core 2 Duo processor

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Why doesn't my iMac recognize my new hard drive?

I recently came into possession of a EMC 2308 iMac with a failing hard drive (the computer could be booted in recovery mode, but its S.M.A.R.T. status was failing). As I had nothing I needed to recover from the old hard drive, I bought a new one to replace it.

After replacing the drive, I started up the computer with a USB bootable copy of OSX connected. I was met with a blank white screen. This was the case no matter which keyboard shortcuts I used to start the computer.

I opened the computer back up and removed the hard drive completely, and the computer was able to boot in recovery mode from the USB drive. However, when I go to startup disk, the USB drive is not listed there. Reinstalling the hard drive still causes the computer to boot to a blank white screen.

Does anybody have any idea where the issue could lie? I have exhausted most of the potential solutions that are available online, and I want to make sure I am not missing something before I declare the new hard drive DOA.

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You could have a few different issues here.

First this system requires access to the hard drives internal thermal sensor to work properly. So if you didn't install the same vendor's drive or not take note of the connector on the drive the thermal sensor uses for that drive you could have an issue. I would recommend you bypass the builtin sensor issue using this: OWC In-line Digital Thermal Sensor for iMac 2009-2010 Hard Drive Upgrade. This will allow you to use any drive in place of the current HD drive that is the correct SATA speed which leads me to the next issue you face.

This systems SATA port is SATA II (3.0 Gb/s), you'll need to make sure the drive you put in is able to run at this SATA I/O speed. Most SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) drives are fixed speed and unable to work in the older systems. If you can give us the make and model of the drive we can double check if it offers a means to be adjusted.

Update (05/22/2016)

Sadly, you do need to address both issues ;-{

You'll need to return this drive as it just won't work in your system. If you review the spec sheet for your drive you'll see its a fixed SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) drive Transfer Rate to Host - 6 Gb/sec

I would recommend going with a SSHD instead it will also offer some zip as well. Here's the drive: Desktop SSHD. If we look as this drives specs sheet: Desktop SSHD Spec Sheet. Here if you look at the line SATA Transfer Rates Supported (Gb/s) - 6.0/3.0/1.5 you'll see this drive is an auto sense drive matching the systems SATA port {3.0}.

You still will need the OWC thermal sensor unit so don't forget to get it!

Once you have the parts you should be fine. Let us know how it goes.

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Yeah it seems it could be a problem with both of those things. The hard drive is a Toshiba 2TB model # DT01ACA200. I realized after I ordered it that the thermal sensor was an issue, I didn't realize this would prevent the hard drive from working at all. Thank you for your reply, if you have any suggestions as to what I should do next I would appreciate it.

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Your Toshiba drives specs: DT01ACA Series Hard Disk Drive Series

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