Author Topic: Yikes  (Read 4815 times)

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Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Yikes
« on: July 18, 2019, 10:37:27 PM »
My iMac was taking forever to load pages, mostly browser traffic.  There were lots open but I couldn't take the spinning rainbow wheel of death any longer so I pressed the on button for about 5 seconds to force it to shut down.  It was in the process of rebooting and I was using the force quit function to keep several programs from reloading. 

It kept taking forever so I once again manually forced it to shut down.  Now I can't get it to come back on.

I got one attempt with super fast fan that stopped. Then multiple efforts to reboot with no effect.  I unplugged the cord.  Waited.  Restarted several times but can't get the screen to load.  Just black with a quiet fan in the background.  Don't know if there's a short in the on button or if it's just dying.  Can't get in to do any kind of diagnostics.  This is a mid 2010 imac running High Sierra.  It's been pretty trustworthy up to now. 

Any helpful suggestions will be appreciated.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2019, 02:17:28 AM »
Tried all those things.  Hold down button for 10 seconds, release...no time to press any keys, the computer tries to start up without pressing the on button a second time.  I did unplug it.  When I plug it back in it tries to reboot without my pressing any keys.  I suspect there's a short in the on button.

Press key down again, holding it for 10 seconds, it won't just go quiet but sort of fights and makes tentative start up noises.  Not possible to reset the parameter RAM.

Just got off the phone with apple support.  They recommended I take it to a repair shop.

It's 8 years old.  I probably need a new one.  Sigh.  Got any ideas?  p.s. Thanks for responding so quickly.  I looked up cost of a new power supply (the original was replaced due to a faulty one that was the subject of a recall) they're about 150 US.  Apparently there are LED lights next to the RAM slots that will give information about the nature of the failure, but I am not so sure I'm up to that. 
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 02:19:27 AM by 6pairsofshoes »

Offline dweez

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2019, 08:26:59 AM »
Is "zapping the PRAM" still a Mac thing?
--dweez

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2019, 11:22:40 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions.

I have an air a couple years old.  Not the best in terms of design but it works.  The HD is ludicrously tiny.  Like I said, it was a gift.  I would not have selected this machine for myself.

Where is the battery on the iMac?  I've unplugged it.  When I plug it in again it tries to boot up like it's on steroids, doesn't wait for me to ask.  No buttons pushed, just the Mac boot up chime and no positive results.  Just a black screen.  Because it just goes mental when plugged in and there's no pause between holding down the On button releasing it and it automatically trying to boot itself back up I've not been able to reset the parameter RAM.

I talked to Apple support last night.  They say Hardware problem, take it in to some 3rd party repair place.  Geniuses won't touch it because it's too old.  It has a resale value (when working) of about $150.  Sounds like it needs to be recycled.  I have Time Machine running thank god.


Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2019, 01:00:45 PM »
Huh, yours died the same way my mom's did. Hers was the last gen PPC, G5.

The thing that made me most angry about it was that every individual part checked out, but the machine did not work.

A similar problem happened to her years later, on a craptastic acer. I actually managed to track down that it was the power button assembly, and if you weren't in warranty (She wasn't.) it isn't worth repairing.

I don't know what your PC shop options are, but I've had some good luck with open box returns. $200 for an $800 machine, but you're rolling dice.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2019, 01:47:32 PM »
I'm nearly certain that the power button assembly is the part that needs replacing.  It's obvious that it's shorting out.  It's cheap but I have to crack this monster to get at it.  It hardly seems worth the trouble for a 9 year old machine.  I've tried jiggling it and rubbing it with a soft tissue, but it's unrelenting in its desire to die.

https://www.ifixit.com/Answers/View/529851/Power+button+removal+and+replacement

I've looked at 2017 imacs and they're relatively inexpensive for 27 inch display (the only model that lets you upgrade the RAM without a note from the Geniuses).  Why they removed consumers' ability to upgrade RAM on the 21.5 inch is god's own mystery.  Cheapskates.  The choices are apple refurbished (save 70 bucks) or BestBuy.  Will set me back 1500+tax.  Great.  Hopefully I won't have to buy another one for 8 more years.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 01:54:28 PM by 6pairsofshoes »

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2019, 02:15:22 PM »
Might be worth not paying the apple tax. Sorry again c.

All in one's were always a crapshoot. With the weird microPC stuff out now, it seems like you're just paying more for less.

If I didn't play video games I'd sure as poo go for a a microPC.

Breaking the G5 down was surprisingly user friendly. I'll probably never get the hard drive out of my MBP. Even worse, I set a password when I was psychotic and I've got no clue what it was (Vista)

I remember this was a fairly easy fix around XP, but is now like, illegal to even discuss. Like I can say Hiren's bent the SAM file over a table, but not how.


I mean, the truth is, we don't really CARE why the computer stops working, it's still "Just work, no break!" to borrow from our frequent food discussions.

Sorry I can't do more than comisserate.

I see a poo TON of laptops on Facebook market in the $160 range. But then you're dealing with Facebook Class people.

on another immature note, Jiggling computer bits never helps, but can flat out kill a machine.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 02:20:57 PM by 8ullfrog »

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2019, 03:25:54 PM »
I just gently pressed the button.  At any rate, now the dilemma is do I buy a used imac from craigslist (I'm in SF Bay area filled with rich techies who get rid of stuff that is lightly used) or do I shell out an additional 500 bucks to get a new one that I can slap an applecare policy on.

There are 2015 imacs for about a grand.  27 inch ones with 32G ram and a T HD.
There's some at BestBuy from 2017, new with slightly faster i5 processors (3.4GHz) at 8 G Ram but expandable.  With tax & applecare, that's closer to 1700  Great god in heaven.  I got a bottom of the line iMac i 2010 or 11 and paid about 1200 for it.  From Apple.  Best buy is cheaper than apple unless you buy apple refurbished.  Don't know about that route.

I used to be able to screw open my old apple laptops and install all kinds of groovy stuff like bigger HDs etc.  Now they treat the machines like precious cult objects to be feared and they must be submitted to the Mac priesthood and their acolytes for upgrades and repairs.  That rankles me.  The sleek designs are made so that unless you are really skilled it's easy to break something when attempting to access the interior.

I'm also wondering if waiting until after 8/1 will result in better back to school deals.  I have a student ID, because I'm actually a student, an old one, but a student, nonetheless, so I'm eligible for educational discounts.  The BEst Buy guys will give the student discount on applecare which saves me a few bucks. If I drive 10 miles to a different store, in another county, the sales tax is a whole percentage point less, which can save me 30 bucks.  Stupid, right?  I hate the gymnastics of money saving.  It's exhausting.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2019, 04:27:44 PM »
There is a tech guy who talks mad poo on modern apple, Louis Rossman. I doubt it will help the pain much, but gluing components into a machine is batshit insane.


That shaman crap was alive and well back in 2006.

I clicked into facebook marketplace for the golly of it. There's an HP for $1. OS - WINDOWS ME. I'm guessing that doesn't really meet your requirements.

There was an LCD monitor for $25 where the entire bottom third was pixel bleed red. Are you interested? Should I put a hold on for you?!?!

https://imgur.com/a/EJWMYKo


What the golly, there is a guy giving away unrefrigerated milk. Facebook Marketplace is scary, I need an adult!


HAHAHA, I just found an offer where a man is holding a grocery bag of wet cheese in front of a pickup truck. He looks as lost as thanos post snap. He is wearing a cowboy hat.

He wants $10 for his grocery bag of Oaxaca.

Facebook is MADNESS.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2019, 06:51:06 PM by 8ullfrog »

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2019, 12:43:31 AM »
I haven't even tried FB marketplace.  But it's amazing what people want for ancient computer equipment.  And there are significant price variances.  The thing that I find astonishing is that people just seem to pull prices out of their hats without checking to see how other sites might price it.  The result is that you can sometimes get a much better computer for the same price than what is being advertised.

I could just go get one slightly newer than my old one and pray it doesn't die.  Or I can bite bullets and shell out a bunch of money for a new machine.  I don't like to make decisions when I feel unsure so I'm mulling it over.  Kind of like a Quaker meeting or something.  At least I have the air.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2019, 02:47:56 PM »
I'd love to buy classic gaming stuff, but yeah, the items in particular I want seem to be behind a "premium" where assholes think a copy they used as a doorstop for 20 years is suddenly worth $500.

Doesn't help when there are other people who want it just as much or more than you. I think I've mentioned wanting an AGS-101, that's just a fancy name for a GameBoy Advance with a slightly better screen than the base model. I want it to play tetris on a backlit screen, and Pokémon R/B/Y

Those are the pokemons speculators are nuts over. I want it because I think all the bells and whistles versions can eat poo.

I used to have all those games on my PSP, but NJ killed it. The refurb I bought actively blocks homebrew. Really wish I'd known that pre-purchase.

So I guess we're both angry at false electronic scarcity right now. That being said, the guy with the sack of cheese, holy poo.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2019, 09:12:50 PM »
Yeah.  "Slightly used cheese.  Good condition.  Only one previous owner."

I'd jump on that in a heartbeat.  Ha!

If I had a clue what those gameboys looked like and their specs I could keep an eye out for them.  I am utter ignoramus about such equipment.

Some people from craigslist wanted to buy something from me.  Said they'd be here between 7 & 8, & of course it's after 8 and not a peep out of them.  I have a phone.  They could call.  They could text.  email even.  We want to get on with our evening.  I'm tired.

I went to BestBuy and saw the new model iMac 27 inch and it's so beautiful.  Display is so much better than the one I have.  I recently got a job that will pay enough to cover it, but blowing so much money all at once on it might be ill advised.  Still I need a computer.  I need a nap, really. 

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2019, 10:02:58 PM »
The AGS-101 has a tiny little model number under it's bottom panel. Even then, you need to bring your own cartridge to test it. I once had a seller try to sell me one with a broken card slot.

He even said my Tetris was bad and went to throw it on the ground. I pulled my old grey original Gameboy and flipped it on. He then tried to sell me 1997 star wars figures. -_-

I've also heard of people fraudulently modifying the 001 models.

https://imgur.com/a/KtHbbcO

What a wet sack of Oaxaca.


For what it's worth, my MBP may be my happiest and LEAST happy purchase ever. Yes, it lasted many years, and was an honorable workhorse.

On the other hand, like my coworkers at the time said, that's a lot of rent, a quality Drum Set, or a cheap car.

You're probably far more qualified than a drunk near teenage moron was to make that call.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2019, 12:29:54 PM »
OK.  It's been unpluged for several days. 

I'll wait until Wed.  I almost bought a new imac yesterday.

I  probably will replace it.  The 21.5 inch imacs don't allow for RAM upgrades so that's not happening.  I guess I'll get a 27 inch.  The external HD did a good job of backing up the HD on the iMac so thank god that's not a concern.  Do you have any insights regarding the virtues of buying a faster 6 core i5 processor?  Or will 3.0 GHz be enough?  I don't do much exciting stuff with the computer except maybe run Parallels for Windows on occasion.  Maybe a larger Fusion drive might be called for?  The standard is 1TB.  Maybe 2 would give me more room?  I can't afford the SSDs.

If I can get this old soldier to boot up again it will just give me more time to shop, which would help.  This little air is working ok in the meantime, but watching tv on it is a bit primitive.

And you are right.  The envelope of the post 2012 imacs is slim.  I don't think the body has changed if at all from the earlier models.  I get to learn what a tech ignoramus I am from listening to guys like this.  My brother had to explain the difference between fusion and ssd drives to me.  My takeaway is that if I really want more zippy storage, I can buy an external and plug it in through the Thunderbolt 3 port.  Great googly moogly.  I don't think I really need an i9 8 core processor, but for about $3k including sales tax and applecare, I could have a tricked out little desktop.  That's more than I need.  I'll most likely shop refurbished as the new retail prices are really steep.  Do you have any opinions about any of this?  I'm all ears.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2019, 05:43:25 PM »
I'm guessing they nerfed the old way of opening them up where the back panel came off?

Not being permitted to upgrade ram in your own machine seems nuts, but I remember when a little Apple logo on the ram stick kicked prices through the roof.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2019, 07:22:27 PM »
The old imacs have a panel on the underside that can be unscrewed in order to access the DIMMs.   The new 27 inch versions have a door on a hook in the rear, a small square panel that affords access.  For some reason this was too expensive for the 21.5 inch or the iMac Pro versions.  Why you'd slap down $5k for a "Pro" machine that wouldn't let you upgrade the RAM is incomprehensible.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2019, 09:08:58 PM »
Yup, G5 was like a car lid. I really liked the way they had everything laid out all nice and neat, hard drive removal was a snap. literally :P

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #17 on: July 23, 2019, 02:30:14 AM »
juuup, Powerbook G4 I gave my mom is bent to poo on one side, optical drive is beyond dead, and I still used it to check our previous router (Can't anymore, this docsis piece of poo uses java stupidly)

It just doesn't work with anything anymore. Poor little trooper.

I will say, as far as trends I am seeing, there are some alarming ram requirements that I feel will be similar to becoming foie gras in the near future, but they are still rumors.

For instance, this would likely never affect six, but the new steam client is rumored to require 16 gb of RAM, and some people have said "Well yeah, but in 2019, 32 gb is more standard." I can't tell if this is like asking a waitress about tipping, or nostradumbass drinking his bong water.

Apps are getting hungrier, and it really does seem like programmers no longer feel a need for restraint.

I agree that SSD's started as, and remain fetish candy. If it gets the job done right for you, it's the right hardware. But I can still see Justin Long smugly judging me.


Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2019, 09:41:05 AM »
Thanks, chris.  That's helpful.  I'll probably upgrade the RAM.  I think an external HD will do fine for storage needs.  I probably need a USB hub to take up some of the extra plugs.  It comes with 4.  I have 2 HDs a wired keyboard (with 2 more USB ports that I use mostly for flash drives) and whatever other odd peripherals I may need to plug in.

8ully, I had a powerbook G4 that had so many issues that they gave me a MacBookPro after one year (thanks to AppleCare).  It's the first and has a beautiful comfortable aluminum case.  But it's not a "Unibody" version.  The newer ones have uncomfortable sharp edges that irritate my forearms as they rest on the machine to type.  The Air is actually more comfortable to use in that respect, although the keyboard is a bit awkward to access.  Maybe I should raise it on a platform.

If I can get that old iMac to reboot, maybe I can trade it in after wiping the HD.  They won't give me a cent if it won't reboot, but will "recycle" it for me at no extra charge.  Nice.  There's no way I'll leave the iMac at 8 G, I'll install an aftermarket DIMM to get it up to 16 at least.  I get sick of watching rainbow wheel spinning.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #19 on: July 23, 2019, 11:36:14 AM »
So, instead of waiting until tomorrow, I restarted the computer using first space bar + r (couldn't remember and your post disappeared).  No result.  Then I used command + r and it quit trying to automatically turn itself on with the on button depressed (before I could hold it down for 10 seconds & while it would shut down, it wouldn't stay shut down, it would start attempting to reboot again.)  After this it tried to reboot but there's a connection not getting made as the screen remains black.

So I'm not sure what the issue is:  either bad on button switch assembly, or that plus power supply issue.  At any rate I have a dead machine that does not seem to be getting better on its own any time soon.  I guess I could try to find a neighborhood person to check it but the labor involved, cracking open the case and replacing one or both is going to cost more than what a used machine would cost at this point.  I think it's probably only good for parts.  I assume apple will take it and shred the HD (security issues my main concern at this point).  The geniuses can't be bothered to work on it so that's not an option.

What's funny about this is that my first generation MacBookPro is still working.  And it's a laptop.  Oh well.  I can't do much with it other than sync my 1st gen iPad with it but it's useful for that.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2019, 03:12:27 PM »
Thank you.
I plugged it in while holding down the 3 keys.  Then I depressed the power button, holding it down for at least 10 seconds.  The computer automatically kicked in with the chime and then I got the same black screen with quiet electronic noises that continued with the black screen.

I tried it again.  It attempts to boot up even with the key firmly pressed down and not unreleased.  I finally took my hand off and got the chime + black screen again.  It won't just shut down and it won't fully turn on.  I keep it unplugged for safety reasons.

And my old MacBookPro charger broke.  Nice.  I tried to plug it in and the prongs broke off.  I can't charge it without one.  So I'll see if a neighbor may have an old one lying around.  Right now I'm trying to figure out how to buy a new one on the cheap.  It's tiring to have one's tools stop working.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2019, 10:38:51 AM »
It's a magsafe charger with the plugs that go into the wall detached.  The little plastic part that holds the assembly together somehow cracked.  So there's no way to get the plug back together.  I have a block with the plug missing.  The part that plugs into the computer is fine.  But no way to get the power into the little transformer section.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #22 on: July 24, 2019, 06:53:19 PM »
The prongs used to slide out of the brick, I once replaced mine with the "prongs" from an iPod charger, the part was identical. I think they go for $2

I have one in front of me, but I don't know which is the part number and which is garbage voltage information.

It was also interchangeable with the G4 and 2006 MBP.

I think it's Mfg. Part #: WS-069E-1 JET, but that only pulls one google result, and the site is down. The entire brick is Model# A1102 W005A050

Hey! that actually pops a result! Looks like that part goes for $8.99

in the picture, you can see it's a square with some lines on the corner to the right of the apple logo.

Mom used to smash the part of the AC adapter that plugged into the powerbook and lit up. THAT part tended to run $65. You could also swap out the little jet piece and use a longer cable.

I once had the magsafe melt, Apple replaced it, but they were super rude about it, telling me they were doing me a "One-Time favor". Which was BS, I was still within MFG warranty AND Applcare.

Hah, when I slid the jet piece, there is a hairline crack on the inside of it, so much for build quality. Sure enough, it's right under the prongs.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #23 on: July 24, 2019, 09:31:44 PM »
Sadly, this is not the variety that has the interchangeable prong section.  The last laptop I had had the disc charger.  It's round and has a plug that is like a fat RCA connector, so it won't work with the MBP.  It's clear from looking at the junction of the missing corner piece (the piece that has the electric plug) that it was not supposed to be separated from the body of the transformer.  The plug was on a hinge that was to fold back to the square body of the transformer, but it wasn't supposed to come off, although I have seen power adapters that did have the removable plug module.  Sadly this is not one of those.  There's cracks around the edges.  There are two broad exposed copper bands that are there to conduct the current from the plugs in the wall socket into the body of the transformer.  The link between those and the pronged plug is no longer there.  I have the broken pieces.


Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #24 on: July 24, 2019, 09:52:17 PM »
So I got a good thick rubber band and placed the plug back up against the copper bars and plugged it into a socket and it works.  Someone on a local neighborhood board might have a used one they can give me.  It's not something I feel I can use without supervising it, so I wouldn't say it's going to pass a UL approval, but right now, it's transferring electricity into the old MBP battery.  It's stuck on an old operating system and can only do limited things with browsers, so the machine is really on its way out.  I keep it charged to use to update my 1st gen iPad.

My tech is old, but I'm older.  The air is the newest thing I've got.  I think the idea of buying a used iMac is too much.  I'm going for a new one, but not before 8/1 because I'm just curious to see what will happen with sales prices and promotions.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #25 on: July 25, 2019, 12:20:00 AM »
The MBP did not charge.  It's not clear if this is due to the battery in the MBP being past it or if the transformer/rubber band option just wasn't functioning properly. 

Oh well.

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #26 on: July 25, 2019, 12:37:54 AM »
is there still an indicator light on the chasis? Sorry my knowledge is prehistoric, but I offer it as best I can.

Honestly, the jury rigged charge method you described rose hairs on my neck, but I didn't want to be negative.

Is the magsafe still a rectangle with dots in the middle like [ - - - - ]  ?

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #27 on: July 25, 2019, 02:01:57 AM »
The plastic assembly simply kept the prongs in place against the copper internal prongs, but I checked regularly to be certain that nothing was overheating.  The light that indicates charge on the end of the line that connects to the computer was green, indicating that things were operating as they should.

Still after a couple hours plugged in on a table, it became clear that it wasn't working.  I either need a new battery or a charger that isn't broken.  Perhaps both.  And the connector to the computer has 4 small projecting rods inside the trapezoidal silver frame.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #28 on: July 25, 2019, 11:20:55 AM »
Thank you, that's very kind, but you are so far away that it wouldn't be worth the expense of postage.  I have a Wanted post on some local boards and people have been responding. So far the offers haven't been compatible but I can keep trying.  People are pretty generous with used tech around here.

Offline smokester

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2019, 06:54:09 AM »
Let me go and have a look in the old parts bin, and see what I have.

If you come across a part-worn left knee in fair working order I'd be interested.
Don't put off until tomorrow, what you can put off until the day after.

There is an exception to every rule, apart from this one.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #30 on: July 26, 2019, 10:00:57 AM »
What I have is a variety of MagSafe chargers, all of which have UK prongs to go into the wall, of course. Duh.

Ha.  That reminds me of the time a storm caused the electricity to go out so my grandmother got out this lovely old glass oil lantern.  The odor sort of bothered us after a while so I went to plug in the fan, until I realized why it wouldn't work.  We laughed.

A guy via Rooster (one of those Freecycle type boards) has located one and I'm going to pick it up this weekend.  I never stop marveling at the generosity of people, especially for such things.  There's a good deal of offers like that here, especially with garden surplus.  I am giving away rhizomes to flowers this weekend so several people are coming by.  I have to thin the beds and they can spruce up their gardens, also.   Body parts are a little harder to come by, unfortunately.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Yikes
« Reply #31 on: July 27, 2019, 08:00:23 PM »
Got the charger.  Someone had one lying around they didn't need any more.  Thank you!