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Tom, Mac Support Specialist
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 675
Experience:  8 years experience as a Mac administrator for a college
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I have an iMac and the hard drive is dead. I have time machine

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I have an iMac and the hard drive is dead. I have time machine on an external hard drive. I am going to replace the dead hard drive but I wanted to make sure time machine drive was working so I plugged it into my laptop. The blue light on the time machine drive went dim but the laptop wouldn't recognize it at all. Even in disk utility. Is this normal? Is the iMac the only computer that recognizes the time machine or is something wrong with time machine as well?
Hello and thanks for using

No the drive would be recognized by any computer.

What kind of drive is it? usb/firewire

What kind of laptop on you using?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

usb western digital on a macbook laptop

Try a different usb cable (one from your printer if it has one) and see if that changes anything. The drive should show up in Disk Utility

You mentioned the light going dim. The drive regardless of connectivity should get ample power. Plug the drive into a different power outlet if it has a power plug. You should get some power on activity on the drive (ie. light)

The next thing to do is resetting pram. Do the following:

Shut down the computer.

Locate the following keys on the keyboard: Command, Option, P, and R. You will need to hold these keys down simultaneously in step 4.

Turn on the computer.

Press and hold the Command-Option-P-R keys. You must press this key combination before the gray screen appears.

Hold the keys down until the computer restarts and you hear the startup sound for the third time.

Release the keys.

Let me know if this works or if you still need assistance
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

ok i'll give it a try.. thanks!

Ok. Let me know how you make out
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