My iMac only displays a blank white screen when I turn it on. What should I do?
May 30, 2007 10:55 PM   Subscribe

My iMac only displays a blank white screen when I turn it on. What should I do?

When I turn on my Intel iMac, I get the normal startup noise and then two distressful sounding beeps that I've never heard before. The screen is blank white and won't go past that (not even the apple logo appears).

I just returned home from out of town today so my computer's been off for a week, but I stupidly left in the surge protector/powerstrip and my parents said there was a power outage today (from a storm, I think). I turned the strip on and off, and all of the other devices that are plugged in work fine. They also assured me that no one's touched my computer while I was gone.

I read some troubleshooting boards, and some suggested that I put in the OSX Tiger installation disc to fix this. It didn't do anything and now it's stuck in the drive.

I have apple care, and I live near service location, but I don't think it covers any problems relating to power surges. I don't really know what to do, and I'm beginning to think this mac I bought (plus the apple care) was a big waste of money if it's this vulnerable to power outages (I never had problems with my previous PC when it was only 2 months old). Please help!
posted by deinemutti to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Perhaps bad RAM?
posted by jaimev at 11:02 PM on May 30, 2007

1. Hold down the eject button on the keyboard, or click and hold down the mouse button as you turn on the computer, to eject the disc.

2. Reboot. Hold down Apple-V to boot the iMac into verbose mode. Note any error messages.

3. Reboot. Follow these instructions to reset the iMac's power manager.

If these steps fail, call AppleCare directly: 1-800-275-2273. Do not complicate your service request with details regarding the power outage, since you do not know if it is causal, and the service technician will not provide warranty service if s/he suspects your actions are responsible for the damage. Do note the disc is inside your computer, if step 1 fails.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:08 PM on May 30, 2007

My applecare would cover that, wouldn't it? Would fixing it cause the computer to lose data?
posted by deinemutti at 11:13 PM on May 30, 2007

Would fixing it cause the computer to lose data?

If resetting the power manager ("SMU") does not resolve the issue, there is likely a problem with one or more of the following:

• power supply
• logic board

Replacing these would not cause you to lose data.

From what you're describing, I doubt the hard drive is at fault, though it is possible. If the hard drive requires replacement, you may lose data if you do not have a backup.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:17 PM on May 30, 2007

Unfortunately none of these solutions have worked (you could probably guess I've been on a different computer to ask this question).

I think I'm going schlep the computer to my nearest apple store tomorrow for help. Good thing I saved the box.

But thanks for your help, I at least have a better idea of what's possibly wrong.
posted by deinemutti at 12:10 AM on May 31, 2007

Don't forget to make a reservation at the Genius Bar at your local Apple Store so that you're not left standing around - same day only, but I don't think that's an issue at this hour. Good luck!
posted by coolhappysteve at 12:31 AM on May 31, 2007

The exact same thing just happened to my mac mini.
posted by Andy Harwood at 5:33 AM on May 31, 2007

i had a friend ask me that same thing; he, too, went out of town for a week. one of the latest software updates seems to be causing the problem.

i walked him through the usual troubleshooting steps, and the one that finally fixed it was to power down, remove every peripheral, and completely remove the power source for about 10 seconds or so, and then power up (basically Blazecock Pileon's step 3).
posted by sxtxixtxcxh at 9:15 AM on May 31, 2007

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