Apple extends faulty hard drive replacement programme

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Apple has extended its hard drive replacement programme to include iMac all-in-one computers dating back to October 2009.

Originally, the firm was set to replace disks in iMacs bought between May 2011 and July 2011.

The programme has now been expanded to cover machines purchased between October 2009 and July 2011. Owners of 21.5-inch or 27-inch iMacs from that period may qualify for a free hard drive replacement.

The launch of the initiative follows on from the discovery of a problem with Seagate drives that caused them to fail "under certain conditions".

Replacing hard drives in all-in-one machines is no mean feat. It involves taking the display off, so will require the machine to be fixed up by Apple or one of its Authorised Service Providers for free.

Users have three years from the purchase date or until 12 April 2013 to get their machines seen to.

Apple has provided a webpage where iMac users can enter the device's serial number to see if it qualifies for a hard drive replacement.

The consumer electronics giant has urged customers to take up the offer "as soon as possible".

It is not known how many drives are affected by the problem. Users that replaced drives before learning of the replacement programme should contact Apple for a refund here>.

The news of the programme extension comes just days before an Apple event where it is thought the firm will unveil a refresh of the entire iMac line-up and an iPad mini that will compete with the Google Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.