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Apple extends iMac hard drive replacements to '09-10 models

The company expands its hard drive replacement program to 3-year-old iMacs with affected Seagate drives.

Apple's late 2009 iMac. Sarah Tew

Apple has quietly extended a hard drive replacement program for its iMac all-in-one computers by an additional one year and seven months to cover machines made as far back as October 2009.

The change, noticed by CNET readers, means that users with Seagate's 1TB hard drive can get it swapped out by Apple or one of the company's authorized service provider for free if it fails.

The issue in question affected a batch of 1TB Seagate hard drives that shipped in Apple's iMac systems, originally between May and July of 2011. That drive was found in both the 21.5-inch and 27-inch model. Apple now says both of those models with the drive, sold between October 2009 and July 2011, are covered if something goes wrong.

Normally, a hard drive replacement would be no big deal in the world of desktop computers, but over the years Apple has shifted toward designs that are less serviceable. As my CNET colleague David Carnoy found after experiencing issues with his 2010 iMac hard drive in August, actually getting to the hard drive required special tools, including suction cups to remove the glass panel display.

To see if your machine is eligible, you can plug in your iMac's serial number on this page.