Skip to main content

Model A1224 / Mid 2009 / 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo processor / Education only model

4 Questions View all

What parts are recommended for an upgrade?

I was gifted a mid 2009 20” iMac from my dad who is a teacher. I want to turn it into a storage system for our family photos and movies. I have tried updating the software but after failed attempts, I contacted Apple and they said it was not supported.

I then reached out to youtube and began watchin tons of online content for repairs and upgrades. I know that I can only upgrade the ram to (2) 4GB totaling 8GB. I thought about adding an SSD of at least 2GB but maybe 4GB. My questions are regarding what brand is recommended for the RAM upgrade, SSD add in, and should I upgrade the CPU or GPU ? Also, what or how can I update the OS so it’s running on a newer platform. I really only need iMovie to cut pics and videos but the one that is currently on it won’t work.

I won’t be doing any gaming whatsoever. I will surf the web some but not much. It really is just something I want to use to store pics and family videos and then maybe use iMovie to cut them into something I can share with my wife and kids.

Thank you for any help.

Answer this question I have this problem too

Is this a good question?

Score 0

Comments:

Add a comment

3 Answers

Most Helpful Answer

You have a few issues here upgrading the RAM to the max 8GB is as high as you can go, and OS-X El Capitan (10.11.6) is as high as this system will go as well. So that limits you on what apps you can run. Small iMovie projects is about the limit. Using your system to host your family pics is workable, but you don’t want to depend on the system drive alone you should have a backup solution just in case.

So that brings us to the last issue your drive upgrade. Your system uses an older version of SATA we call it SATA II (3.0 Gb/s), todays SATA interfaces are SATA III (6.0 Gb/s). So the drive you get needs to be able to run at the slower SATA data rate. Most drives today are fixed speed only able to run at SATA III. Some drives are able to run at the slower speed by matching the systems I/O ports speed (we call it Auto Sense Vs Fixed Speed). So what ever drive you get make sure the spec sheet calls out the slower SATA speeds. As an example: Samsung 870 EVO or 870 QVO SSD’s Note the Interface line lists 3.0 Gb/s (SATA II).

Here’s the guide to replace your current HDD with the SSD iMac Intel 20" EMC 2266 Hard Drive Replacement

Was this answer helpful?

Score 1
Add a comment

On the apple website, I think there is a way to install older versions of macOS. For your specific iMac, I’d put macOS High Sierra or Sierra, which I think should work with your iMac.

Was this answer helpful?

Score 0
Add a comment

been finding it hard to get reliable info on the mid-2009 imac (aka the education edition). some say the cpu is socketed, some don't know, but mine with the mainboard mac-f221ea9 has the T7750 cpu soldered in place and not with the zif socket for sure. the nvidia 9400 is also soldered and unchangeable. so open it up to give it a clean, try and find some sodimm ddr3 1066mhz ram with 7-7-7-20 timings (or lower if you can, i have both micron and hynix sticks that have those timings), grab a useable ssd (there apparently used to be problems with certain controllers, but the posts i found talking about that were from 2015 so most modern ones should be ok if they're backwards compatible with sata2 [you'll still get benefits from sata3 capable ssds purely from the random read/write IOPs, lifespan etc.]) and keep in mind if you replace the optical disc drive, i think that port is limited to 1.5gbs instead of the 3gbs; main sata port should run at 3gbs though, but the nvidia m79 chipset can be a bit fecky with certain (older?) ssd controllers, again, info from ~2015 so might not affect much that came out after the samsung 860evo (was on macrumors.com somewhere)

!BUT! here's the good news! you can run catalina with a relatively easy hacked patch! (montrery doesn't work yet afaik)

http://dosdude1.com/catalina/

and if you can migrate away from the mac ecosystem since you only want imovie, if you want to install an official, still-supported and security patched copy of 64bit windows ltsc iot 21h2 (or a linux server, etc.. but for windows, LTSC IoT is the most lightweight and secure, 21h2 brings native linux support) natively, here's a quick blitz-through on how to do it without the nvidia M79 chipset having a stronk [if not you can stop here, enjoy catalina and the rest of your day :) ]:

idk if this fixes ALL the crashes (some wifi cards crash i think? nvidia drivers DO crash) but to run native windows (not tried linux or bootcamped tbh, but bootcamp nerfs windows performance on purpose i hear) you have to install via the Legacy Boot, so either via DVD burnt as legacy bootable (not uefi/efi, or csm) if it fits, or the method that i found works for USB sticks (usb won't be noticed unless it's an efi boot) have one stick to boot into rEFInd, and use that to boot into another stick formatted to fat32 legacy boot mode (i used YUMI to achieve this as Rufus didn't work, YMML for linux and grub loader) and you should be good, but as an extra step it might be worth formatting your ssd for mbr first (WARNING: this step wipes ALL data on the disk):

(idk how for linux, but) on the windows installer once it's loaded to the first screen, hold shift and press f10 to bring up CMD > diskpart > list disk > select disk 0 [at least it was always disk 0 for me, disk 1 was the 8gb rEFInd usb stick] > clean > convert mbr > exit > install windows. might be unnecessary, but it's a peace-of-mind thing for me

the x64 windows drivers are in bootcamp 4.0.433 on archive.org (you may want to run the Bootcamp64.msi in compatability mode from an elevated CMD to get it to install everything, and then backup the drivers your system actually has, and then reinstall windows again and device manager update using the backups... personally i could only just not get the webcam working without that but since you plan on doing a server just disable it and install what you need lol. make sure you install the nvidia drivers from nvidia's website BEFORE connecting to the internet at all, just cause windows update will install an old one, and the bootcamp's one is so old it doesn't even work). the first thing i'd do after getting into windows is to install the nvidia co-processor driver and reboot (that's the chipset driver). and voila! just run o&oshutup and windows10debloaterGUI.ps1 to get rid of the few dreggs of bloatware and windows' telemetry, get Waterfox (cause &&^& anything chromium) with uBlock Origin, and you too can laugh when your friends and family's jaws drop on seeing how an """"obsolete""""" 13 year old imac is just as fast as their 2 year old laptop with 4 times as many cpu threads and twice as fast ram! ;)

Was this answer helpful?

Score 0

Comments:

Let's clarify a few issues you've brought into the conversation

SATA Compatibility So I have a fast BMW which can hit 150 MPH on the open track I have a Ford Gremlin which pegs out at 62 MPH from a down hill head start. So now lets look at running these cars in New York city! If both take the same path side by side during rush hour which will win the race? Neither! As they both hit the limitations of the pathway. OK, now lets go to race track this time the BMW will lap the Gremlin quite a few times! So the BMW is the better right?? with these two examples for sure! Now lets change out the Gremlin to a Jeep 4by4 with mud tires and now we are on a muddy horse track which vehicle wins here?? The Jeep!

The point is the SATA port of the system limits what you can get it makes no difference which drive A SATA II or SATA III drive in a SATA II system! (there's one wrinkle here but for now lets except this) Some drives are better because of newer tech and the architecture.

OK, Its time for that wrinkle issue! Not all SATA III (6.0 Gb/s) SSD drives play nice in SATA II (3.0) systems! This gets into the drives design we use the term Fixed Speed and Auto Sense to help explain things.

A fixed speed SATA III won't work reliably in SATA II (3.0 Gb/s) or older SATA I (1.5 Gb/s) system port. The standard was written with the idea the older drives would be transferred into newer system as the costs of the drives in many cases where two or three times the cost of the system! So a SATA I/II drive will play nice in a SATA III system no problem!

So a Fixed speed drive only works in the SAME I/O speed or higher as the drive SATA II > SATA II or SATA III

Now this Auto Sense thing! These are special drives! That dial back the data flow to match what the system port can handle. The only way to tell is to review the give drives spec sheet! As an example here's the Samsung 870 EVO spec sheet Now jump down to the Interface line: SATA 6 Gb/s Interface, compatible with SATA 3 Gb/s & 1.5 interfaces Unless the sheet spells it out the drive is FIXED!

The EDU series systems came in two configs (year) so unless you check EveryMac - Lookup you just don't know.

by

Add a comment

Add your answer

Adam G will be eternally grateful.
View Statistics:

Past 24 Hours: 1

Past 7 Days: 2

Past 30 Days: 9

All Time: 123