Model A1013, A1052, A1085, or A1107 / 1440x900 screen resolution

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How do I fix grey screen/computer is not starting up?

After being away for a year I returned to my G4 and on the second use found it refused to start up. Plugged it in and it will chime when start is held, but stuck on grey screen with apple mark in center. Called Apple and they said to try to install from disk. I found the old Panther disk, inserted it and held C. It was installing, however it got held up on the checking disk step (said I had 11GB free though). Tried disk utility and just hung up with a spinning icon (checking disk).

Apple said it is probably a hardware problem, but they don't support this model anymore. I have been searching for info and found references to logic board, logic board battery, PRAM and RAM but am not really sure how to diagnose the problem.

Any suggestions on where to begin?

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First you have to ask your self how much do I put into this system? The battery is getting old and it won't run the newer apps or OS's. I wouldn't use it on-line any more as the web browsers this system supported are limited (and not secure). If you have it for home use and maybe email then it maybe worth putting some money into fixing it. Otherwise I would think about replacing it.

I suspect your HD is encountering problems. The rub here is you'll need to reformat the drive and run some tests to see if it still will work. And even then you are on borrowed time.

Do you still have the CD/DVD the system came with? You'll need to see if you can boot up using the recovery CD. If you can, do you have a backup external FireWire HD? after making it bootable and backing up your stuff to it you should be able to boot up under it by altering the startup disk under the system prefs. then using it to boot up you can use disk utility to repair your disk if it can.

Ideally, you should replace the drive. Opening and replace the HD in this system is quite easy the only issue will be getting the correct drive that will work in this system.

These systems used a Ultra ATA/100 HD I would start first see if you can find one.

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Thank you for the input. You are right in that it had limited functionality until it died. Nice 17" screen made it still useful though. Everything of value was already backed up before it stopped working.

It is a spare computer, so I don't think I'd spend more than $100 to fix it.

I do have the OSX CD, but doing a C boot got me stuck on "checking disk" step.

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