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Electrical problem with iMac?

Message #1 - Posted 2005/06/18 - jbalin

A month or so ago, my computer (a late-2001 iMac) seemed to respond poorly to a couple of power outages. Both times, the computer wouldn't turn back on after power resumed. Someone in tech support suggested opening up the bottom of the computer and pushing the internal power-reset button (which I never knew about, before). I tried that, and it worked. OK, so far.

The computer has been *generally* operating normally since then, but...now, when it's left to "sleep" for an extended period, there's a problem waking it up. Often, hitting a key doesn't wake up the computer, and instead makes it *turn off altogether*. Just an instant fizzle to nothing. But...this only happens when it has been asleep for awhile (at least a few hours). Also, when I then boot it up again, the date/time is always wrong (12/31/69, 4:00am). I assume this time problem could be fixed by simply clicking the "Use Network Time Server" button in System Preferences, but I wonder why this is required now.

What's happening here? I don't know if the power-outage incidents are related to the subsequent problem or not, but I thought I should mention them....

Message #2 - Posted 2005/06/18 - jbalin

PS Still using OS 10.2.8, if this is relevant at all.

Message #3 - Posted 2005/06/18 - Ernie Klein

Previously, jbalin wrote:

A month or so ago, my computer (a late-2001 iMac) seemed to respond poorly to a couple of power outages. Both times, the computer wouldn't turn back on after power resumed. Someone in tech support suggested opening up the bottom of the computer and pushing the internal power-reset button (which I never knew about, before). I tried that, and it worked. OK, so far.

The computer has been *generally* operating normally since then, but...now, when it's left to "sleep" for an extended period, there's a problem waking it up. Often, hitting a key doesn't wake up the computer, and instead makes it *turn off altogether*. Just an instant fizzle to nothing. But...this only happens when it has been asleep for awhile (at least a few hours). Also, when I then boot it up again, the date/time is always wrong (12/31/69, 4:00am). I assume this time problem could be fixed by simply clicking the "Use Network Time Server" button in System Preferences, but I wonder why this is required now.

What's happening here? I don't know if the power-outage incidents are related to the subsequent problem or not, but I thought I should mention them....

Dead battery. Close to that little power reset button that you didn't know about, there is a small (1 inch long) battery in a holder. More likely than not, it is dead. You can get a replacement from Radio Shack.

-Ernie-

"There are only two kinds of computer users -- those who have suffered a catastrophic hard drive failure, and those who will."

Have you done your backup today?

Message #4 - Posted 2005/06/18 - jbalin

Ernie Klein wrote:

Dead battery. Close to that little power reset button that you didn't know about, there is a small (1 inch long) battery in a holder. More likely than not, it is dead.

I'll check that out...thanks!

Message #5 - Posted 2005/06/18 - matt neuburg

jbalin wrote:

Ernie Klein wrote:

Dead battery. Close to that little power reset button that you didn't know about, there is a small (1 inch long) battery in a holder. More likely than not, it is dead.

I'll check that out...thanks!

I find this explanation doubtful, since my parents have a similar machine (iMac DV) with a similar problem (can't wake from long sleep), but that battery is new (I replaced it myself). However, I look forward to hearing what your own results are! I'd be glad if I were wrong about this and just replacing the battery again would fix it. m.

Message #6 - Posted 2005/06/19 - Jeff Wiseman

matt neuburg wrote:

jbalin wrote:

Ernie Klein wrote:

Dead battery. Close to that little power reset button that you didn't know about, there is a small (1 inch long) battery in a holder. More likely than not, it is dead.

I'll check that out...thanks!

I find this explanation doubtful, since my parents have a similar machine (iMac DV) with a similar problem (can't wake from long sleep), but that battery is new (I replaced it myself). However, I look forward to hearing what your own results are! I'd be glad if I were wrong about this and just replacing the battery again would fix it. m.

Yea, the fact that the date/time keeps resetting is a concern if it is NOT based on a bad battery. Powering down and back up with a bad backup battery will cause a loss of date/time (along with other settings). If it is not due to a bad battery, then something screwy in the hardware could be afoot. The most common cause of the date/time loss is a poor backup battery though so let's hope that is it.

Jeff Wiseman
to reply, just remove ALLTHESPAM

Message #7 - Posted 2005/06/19 - Ernie Klein

Previously, matt neuburg wrote:

jbalin wrote:

Ernie Klein wrote:

Dead battery. Close to that little power reset button that you didn't know about, there is a small (1 inch long) battery in a holder. More likely than not, it is dead.

I'll check that out...thanks!

I find this explanation doubtful, since my parents have a similar machine (iMac DV) with a similar problem (can't wake from long sleep), but that battery is new (I replaced it myself). However, I look forward to hearing what your own results are! I'd be glad if I were wrong about this and just replacing the battery again would fix it. m.

It is quite possible that the OP has more than one problem. The symptom of the clock being reset to 1969 is almost always the battery. The fact that the OP didn't know about the battery and it is a 2001 model would be another indication of a dead battery (most don't last that long). And, I have seen funny (power related) effects in the many computers at School that have suffered from dead or partly dead batteries, depending on how they fail. Some batteries have a high resistance when they fail and others can become a dead short. I suspect that the dead short ones load down the circuit and cause other problems. Anyway, it's probably a good place to start.

-Ernie-

"There are only two kinds of computer users -- those who have suffered a catastrophic hard drive failure, and those who will."

Have you done your backup today?

Message #8 - Posted 2005/06/19 - Erik

Yea, the fact that the date/time keeps resetting is a concern if it is NOT based on a bad battery. Powering down and back up with a bad backup battery will cause a loss of date/time (along with other settings). If it is not due to a bad battery, then something screwy in the hardware could be afoot. The most common cause of the date/time loss is a poor backup battery though so let's hope that is it.

Personally I'd do a data back-up asap, just in case more than the battery is amiss... sure won't hurt anything.

Good Luck!

Erik

(Who once had a big ol' smile on his face when he lunched a hard disc 20 min after doing his monthly back-up!)

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