Originally known as "The New iMac" the iMac G4 was created to replace the iMac G3 as Apple's all-in-one desktop computer. The G4 is easily recognizable by its swiveling monitor mounted above the hemispherical computer. Steve Jobs quoted it as being "a design that will last till the next decade."

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iMac Grey Screen When Turned On!

My iMac G4 800mhz shows a grey screen with no picture (no ? folder, no globe) when I turn it on. The startup chime sounds and from the base of the iMac it sounds like someone threw crackers into the fan. To get it to boot up, I have to turn off the machine and hold the power button until the long beep sounds. The cracker noise is gone once the iMac shows the white Apple screen with the spinning wheel.

Also, if the iMac G4 goes to sleep for a couple hours, the computer will lock up upon waking and the sound of crackers in the fan come back. The mouse cursor can still be moved around, but the iMac will not launch any applications, recognize any keyboard entries, and will not sleep with the press of the power button for 1 second. The only way to use the iMac is to reboot it by holding down the power button until the iMac powers down and turn it back on.

Any ideas?

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Is the crackers sound a physical sound or electrical sound? Has your printer been dropping off line or the date and time been wrong?

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It's a physical sound, and the date and time are still fine. Hard drive?

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Did you fix the problem? What was it?

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Funny thing - it's the hard drive! I made a carbon copy clone of the disk onto another new IDE drive, ordered thermal paste from Amazon, and will get the iMac up and running by the weekend. Thanks for all your help!

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I have replaced the hard drive over the weekend and it is working great now! I have the iMac set up as a dual boot Tiger and Leopard. This weekend I am going to be installing a stick of 512mb RAM to boost the system performance under Leopard.

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The very first thing I would do is to make sure my data is backed up. Frankly the crackers thing sounds like a fan. I'd hook it up in Target mode using a firewire cable attached to another Mac. Hold the "T" key down on the G$. Your hard drive icon should show up on the desktop of the other Mac. You can now run Disk Utilities on the hard drive. See if you get the noise when the hard drive is active. I've seen fans on older macs start to come off. They are pressed onto a center hub and yuou can pull them off. This is just speculation on your machine. You can tell by pressing them in with your fingers, if they move you can glue them back into place.

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Jack Byrnes will be eternally grateful.
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