iMac won't boot, constant beeping

This is a discussion on iMac won't boot, constant beeping within the iMac forums, part of the Mac Forum category; I have a 21.5" late 2009 model. I've had it since 2010. While I was away last month, my girlfriend said it would not boot. ...

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  1. #1
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    iMac won't boot, constant beeping

    I have a 21.5" late 2009 model. I've had it since 2010. While I was away last month, my girlfriend said it would not boot. Over the phone, I helped her run a disk utility check and it indicated nothing was wrong. She was able to get it booted into safe mode. She then restarted it and it booted normally. Sometime during the night, it shut off and she tried to turn it on.

    Now all it does is boot to the initial grey screen. The hard drive sounds like it's trying to do something, and there is a constant high pitched beep. It does not sound like the typical loud beep I recall hearing when RAM is bad or improperly installed. I have looked everywhere to think online for an answer and made a profile here because of this issue.

    Now I'll admit, I haven't backed up this hard drive for at least 6 months. So if anyone has any idea how to recover the data or get this thing started again, I would much appreciate it. My only other option after this seems to be a trip to the apple store in Oklahoma City. But I'd rather not, since I live in Walters.
    Last edited by joreldg; 06-11-2013 at 06:48 PM. Reason: uploaded the video

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  3. #2
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    It certainly does sound like the hard drive is trying to do something but failing. Mac beeps are normally associated with RAM issues according to my reading, but they occur in distinct patterns of 1-5 beeps, and not a repetitive beep like yours is. My guess at this point is hard drive failure. What version of OSX is your Mac running? Do you have a DVD of Snow Leopard for example you could try and boot from to run some Disk diagnostics?
    Last edited by JezzerP; 06-12-2013 at 02:37 PM.
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  4. #3
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    Thanks for the response.

    Currently running 10.8.2(or 3). I can't find my Snow Leopard DVD anywhere, but I'll keep trying to get that done once I make it home tonight.

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