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The Mac Pro First Generation is an Intel Xeon-based workstation computer manufactured by Apple Inc. The first generation model includes the machines from 2006 through 2008.

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MacPro 3.1 Wont boot, continuous Chime after power up

My MacPro 3.1 (early 2008) won’t boot. When I press the power button fans spin, then chime sounds and after that the chime sound goes over and over again in a loop. Screen shows multiple vertical lines with colors.

First suspect is the GPU, It’s an ATI 5770 flashed for mac card (worked like a charm for years). I also happen to have the old ATI 2600xt card that was working.

Upon trying the old card, system boots and I hear the chime sound but then nothing, no video.

Upon further testing, I booted the machine with no GPU connected, to my surprise It booted successfully (no video of course). How do I know this? because I connected the MacPro to my network and im able to see and also to connect to it via TeamViewer, transfer files and everything.

So my question is, Is this for sure GPU problem? Can both GPUs be bad even when the old one was working when I did the upgrade? Or is it possible the logic board has some issue? (I tested the cards on both x16 slots, same results). Even after booting successfully without video, could the logic board have some issue with the GPU slots or something?

Sadly I don’t have another MacPro to test the video card, only windows machines that don’t accept these cards.

Thanks to anyone who can shed some light

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It turned out both graphic cards were bad. What I did was to try the old “cook in the oven” trick and after that both cards booted successfully with no issues (I had nothing to loose so I tried it). Even though they worked I ended up buying a new card and It has been working with no issues.


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Here is the chart on how to read the Diagnostic LEDS

The Mac Pro (Early 2008) logic board includes a set of LEDs to help service providers troubleshoot the computer. The LEDs are located on the logic board between the two DIMM riser card connectors. LEDs 3, 4, 5, and 6 are normally off and will automatically illuminate if an error occurs. To read LEDs 1, 2, 7, 8, and 9, you must press the DIAG_LED button, which is adjacent to the LEDs. To press the DIAG_LED button, use the nylon probe tool (Apple part number 922-5065).

Use the following table to interpret the LEDs.

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Hello @mayer, the above link leads to a dodgy redirect and the original domain doesn't exist anymore. Better delete it, if possible.

Came here because I got an old 3,1 Mac Pro that won't start up. Will keep looking.


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Hi, i have the same problem with my Mac Pro 5.1. I used a PC vodeo card flashed R9 280X for few months and everything worked fine. Few days ago a tryed to install Mojave and for thi reason i had to update my EFI mac pro firmware (from 1.39 to 1.44). After this update, my mac didn’t boot anymore (chime loop). Fortunately i had the old video card (ATI HD 6870) and the mac boot with no problem… Obviously a cannot upgrade the sytem to Mojave with this card… I read that the same video card (R9 280X) flashed with the EFI rom for HD 7970 for mac works fine. I’ll try. I hope that my experience could be hellpful for resolve your issue…

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Damian Lepori será eternamente grato(a).
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