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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

Hard Drive Failure?


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polakbob

 
Member Since: Aug 07, 2006
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My wife was playing a game on our MacBook (2007) earlier when it suddenly froze. I couldn't kill the game using normal methods (command tab, escape, etc.) So I had to cold cut the power. When I tried restarting there was a pretty long delay (~1 minute) before the white screen came up and then nothing. Now when I restart the computer the white screen comes up like it normally did, but no apple logo and then no OS. I had a failed hard drive on the computer before so I tried putting in an install disc during boot. Nothing happened. I held alt while the computer starts and the install disc shows up, but no hard drives. When I click the install disc nothing happens. Thoughts?
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polakbob

 
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As soon as I finished posting this the computer was able to boot with the install disc. I ran a disc utility that resulted in the computer being unable to "verify the disc." I'm now dismantling it to hook the drive up to a USB hard drive reader so I can try to recover some of the data before seeing if I can wipe and salvage the drive. Does anyone have any thoughts on what's happened so far. Also, does anyone have any thoughts on how I could go through two hard drives in one computer? I've never destroyed a hard drive in a computer before this one. Now it would seem I've gone through two. Maybe MacBooks are more sensitive to pressure on the chassis, etc.? I use this computer everyday for classwork which involves me putting the computer in a backback and going from class-to-class. Maybe I'm putting too much stress on the computer (though I think I'm pretty careful)? I'd really appreciate any thoughts anyone has.
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polakbob

 
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... and on plugging the drive into a USB reader I'm getting nothing. So pretty clearly at least the drive is shot. Any thoughts on what might have caused me to burn through two drives in one computer would be greatly appreciated as I prepare to buy yet another drive.
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DarkestRitual

 
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Do you do a lot of downloading and writing to the disk? Live in an earth quake zone where your disk would be rattling a lot? Buy cheap replacements? I have no idea, that shouldn't happen. Try putting your hard disk to sleep when possible (option in Sys Pref)
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Corbab

 
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Member Since: Oct 13, 2009
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There's a distinct possibility that you've got a faulty logic board. That sounds like about the same symptoms my Macbook was experiencing when the logic board went. Before you jump to that however, try resetting the PRAM (Cmd+Opt+P+R) and boot into Safe and Verbose modes (Cmd+S and Cmd+V). If you've tried to boot from a CD, and tried those other things, chances are you've got a fried logic board.
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harryb2448

 
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When you boot from the install DVD, go into Utilities and run Repair Disk from there and se what is reported. Verifying does nothing to repair the drive and you cannot repair a drive you are booted from.

Doing that cold cut could have corrupted the OS or drive and a repair may work. Did you try going into the menu bar, and selecting Force Quit under the Apple icon by chance?
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andr3wkim

 
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It sounds like you know what you're doing in general. As far as the hard disk is concerned, it's pretty much luck. I had a white Macbook from 2007 and went through two hard drives myself within 5 weeks of purchase.

You might want to check the web for recalls done for the drive(s) and if there is, Apple will replace the drive for free (might want to print out the recall information).

Also, if you have access to a Windows machine, I suggest trying to see if the disk is recognizable there. You can format it from there and then re-install Mac OS X.

13" Macbook Pro 2.53GHz w/ 4GB RAM
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polakbob

 
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Thanks for the suggestions on what to do with the drive from everyone. As for repairing the disc (harryb2448) I tried that to no avail. The drive was a mess. Even when I plugged it up to a USB reader I couldn't get a computer to recognize it.

(Corbab), I didn't try resetting the PRAM, safemode, or verbose mode. For some reason I never got an email about some of the replies on this thread and I've been working steadily on this for the last couple of days. I finished installing a new drive last night, however, without any problems. Would you still worry about a faulty logic board since everything's running?

I'm still stuck on what went wrong. All I can think is that I overheated the system somehow, but I'd think that wouldn't be possible. The suggestions are still welcome. I really don't want to fix any more hard drives in this computer.
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Corbab

 
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I replaced my drive at least twice, and the computer stopped working both times. Hopefully it was just some funky HD issue, but if it happens again and the other solutions don't work, I'd say it's probably the logic board. I'm not sure what it is with MBs and logic boards, but that's what happened to mine and a few of my friends'.

Good luck.
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