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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Desktops > RIP 2006 iMac

RIP 2006 iMac
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andi*pandi
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Sep 30, 2022, 07:07 PM
 
So my father's 2006 imac is slow, riddled with suspicious malware (safari icon in dock goes to safari.com for all your adventure needs), is too old to update, and needs replacing. The Gainesville mac repair center didn't even want to try wipe and reinstall.

He shot down my offer of a new imac. He doesn't need much that is fast or fancy, as long as he can edit documents to write music, surf, play angry birds, and play music, he's happy. I was wondering if a mac mini could use the imac as a monitor? This thread is not encouraging.

https://discussions.apple.com/thread/7490404

I've sent him to best buy for an external drive to rescue his important files (and hopefully none of the malware). Anything other ideas?
     
reader50
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Sep 30, 2022, 08:21 PM
 
Unsupported installs extend the lives of Macs, but a 2006 iMac is tricky.

Early- or Mid-2006 = core duo CPU. Stuck at Snow Leopard.
Late 2006 = core 2 duo, may be able to update all the way to El Capitan (10.11).

It might be possible to upgrade the CPU to a C2D to enable the upgrade. But you're still limited to 2 GB RAM (3GB for the last two models).

The hard drives are small today, and 16 years old. So budget in a solid state drive.

I handled one once, and gave up on it. Upgrades were getting too hard, with no way around the RAM limit. It was necessary to start with a later iMac.
     
Waragainstsleep
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Sep 30, 2022, 09:29 PM
 
The Aluminium iMacs were the first that could run Target Display Mode. I want to say it was the 2011 27" model without looking it up, but it might be the 2010 or even 2009. It was definitely a 27" only feature first though.

I have a few 2009-2011 iMacs in service, one is already runnings as a pure Windows 10 machine and the others are poised to follow suit. This way their software is up to date and secure, unlike with High Sierra that they are stuck with on the Mac side. These were great machines and still perfectly serviceable in terms of power and ability. A pity Apple didn't support them a little longer. Catalina killed a lot of good Macs with its bonkers GPU requirements.
You could probably get yours running Windows 7 with some effort but I can't imagine Windows 10 would be a pleasure on it.

There are certainly plenty of upgrades that can be done with the 2006 iMac but if you took it to a repair centre just to wipe it, I can't imagine you'll want to do a CPU upgrade yourself and paying someone else to do that and maybe get an SSD (I'd be careful with that, newer Macs than this were very fussy about which SSDs they could handle - Samsung 9XX series would be your best bet if you do go for it) is going to cost many times the value of a Mac that age.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
andi*pandi  (op)
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Oct 1, 2022, 02:53 PM
 
Oh, I don't think we want to fiddle with new hard drives etc. Sounds like it should be recycled. Just hoping to keep something he's familiar with and that monitor would fit his desk easily. I think he'd love a new imac (or even 3YO imac) but doesn't want me to shell out cash for him.

He got the external hard drive plugged in and it shows up on the desktop, but he says he can't drag files onto it, and it wants to install software (that of course won't run on ancient imac.)

Sigh.

Thanks guys.
     
reader50
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Oct 1, 2022, 04:09 PM
 
Don't drag files to it. Turn on Time Machine, let it claim the external.

note: use Disk Utility to reformat it first to GUID / MacOS Extended.
     
subego
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Oct 1, 2022, 04:14 PM
 
What’s wrong with dragging (non system) files?

Won’t Time Machine try to copy over a ton of cruft?
     
reader50
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Oct 1, 2022, 05:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
What’s wrong with dragging (non system) files?

Won’t Time Machine try to copy over a ton of cruft?
You're protecting his data from a 16-year old HD. Sure, he can copy a few files over. He'll forget important ones, and will forget to dynamically update them.

Automated processes get everything, and keep them up to date. Few Mac owners had backups before TM came out. Today everyone should have, and I hope it's at least a majority.
     
subego
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Oct 1, 2022, 05:29 PM
 
All that’s correct.

I guess I was thinking more in terms of a “final step”.

At that point, if Time Machine isn’t already going there’s no point in starting right as the iMac’s getting scuttled. Especially if it’s got some malware on it. Likewise, copying over user folders will get everything unless he’s got some weird outliers that save critical information in the system… he probably doesn’t.

Lastly, I figured Andi would take care of things like fixing his photos and music.

And then setting up screen sharing.
     
   
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