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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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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This is going to be bad caps or a bad hard drive and data cable. It's probably caps.

If your drive is this slow, I'd start with checking the caps with an ESR meter. Good ESR meters have a approximate tolerance list on them. However, do not rely on this. Get the datasheet for this information. A reference chart will never be as accurate as say, a datasheet with the real numbers.

You may even need to desolder them to get an accurate reading. This is even recommended to prevent false readouts.

If new caps don't help then replace the drive. These are old enough to warrant new drives. You should replace them every 4-5 years, generally. However, many live longer then this. It's just after 4-5 years, they can get unreliable. It's a good practice. You can use them in less crucial machines.

If you still have problems then I would give up on it. The iMac G5 is a piece of crap. They kill caps, get hotter then the sun and have display problems left and right relating to the TAB on the panels. To make matters worse Apple used TDMS. You can't easily swap these like LVDS with a Apple EDID injector. You have to buy the crappy Apple panel. Apple stops making parts for these after 5 years. The G5 iMac was garbage from the beginning and over the years the rest that made it after 5 years are showing their true colors. This machine will become a rabbit hole if you try and repair it further. Cut your losses and move on.

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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.)


Start over with a fresh OS next time


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


My awnser is updated


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


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