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29/5/2016 0 Comments
Oh dear. My poor 3.5 year old iMac (the 28in variety) suffered a major, major failure this past week!
After suffering frequent and persistent 'spinning beachballs of death' last week, I worried that something was amiss and, between other work, started the process of diagnosing what was wrong with it.
It seemed that the hard drive passed all checks, and tests showed that the RAM and other hardware were fine.
But, my poor Mac was certainly still unwell, so I tried a couple of other resets - all to no avail.
After I had exhaused nearly all the tests and reset my login preferences, I decided to start up my Mac in something called Safe Mode - at which point, I got the dreaded black screen of death.
From that point on, any attempt to start the iMac up failed - it would look like it was starting but just give up and shut off after a few seconds.
At this point, I thought I had better admit defeat and booked a Genius Bar appointment at Chadstone's Apple Store - dreading the prospect of lugging my massive iMac through Chaddy for an inspection by a young Genius.
I decided that I would try one final thing before my appointment - pre-empting what I thought that the Genius would, most likely, suggest.
Given that a successful Time Machine backup had been completed 5 days before it 'died' (thank goodness), I decided to do a full restore from that backup. (Unfortunately, I would lose a couple of days' of work - the Time Machine had, without me realising, stopped working over a weekend when I did a lot of movie editing. Drat!)
I then waited the 40 hours it took to restore my iMac from the Time Machine backup, holding very little hope that my problem would be resolved.
Well, the good news is ....
It worked!! And I am writing this article from my Lazarus iMac. No more prolonged spinning beachballs, no black screen of death, and (thank goodness), no visit to the Geniuses!
I am just kicking myself I didn't take heed of the warning signs before it stopped functioning - I should have checked the backup was working. This would have prompted me to separately back up the movies I was working on, to Dropbox or an external drive.
Hindsight is such a wonderful thing, isn't it.
The key message for everyone is - make sure you are backing up your Mac! You never know when something could go wrong and, without a backup, you may lose EVERyTHING.
Here is a collection of articles that I referred to while trying to diagnose my problem ...
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