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  1. #1

    AAhitman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Posts
    17
    Specs:
    2.2 GHz, 2 GB Ram, 120 GB HD
    Macbook boots up then goes to sleep
    My unibody 13 in macbook boots up fine and sometimes stays awake long enough to see my desktop and then goes to sleep. When you try to wake it the screen only gives a single flash and then back to sleep. If I use a mini display to VGA adapter it works fine on an external monitor. Do I have a bad sleep sensor and if so where is it, or do I have a bad LCD screen? I am at a loss and any help would be appreciated. I have done alot of searching to try to find a fix but I've had no luck.
    iMac 20'
    MacBook Pro 15'
    iPod Video 80 GB
    iPhone 8 GB

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Posts
    48,833
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, El Capitan
    Try resetting the System Management Controller. (SMC) That will sometimes resolve sleep problems. See the following Apple KB LINK.

    You might also try resetting the PRAM/NVRAM if that doesn't work. LINK

    Regards.

  3. #3

    deus_ex_machina's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 06, 2004
    Location
    Tejas
    Posts
    1,713
    Specs:
    2GHz Mac Mini 2GB RAM 160GB 10.6.2 | MDD DP 1.25GHz G4 1.5GB RAM 10.4.11 | 233MHz iMac G3 10.3.9
    Sleep sensor is magnetic - either over the left side of the keyboard or near the latch. Does the macbook sleep when closed?

  4. #4

    AAhitman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Posts
    17
    Specs:
    2.2 GHz, 2 GB Ram, 120 GB HD
    I've tried all the resetting tips to no avail. The macbook sleeps with the lid open or closed it does not matter. I also just found out that it goes into sleep mode with a full battery charge when off external power.
    iMac 20'
    MacBook Pro 15'
    iPod Video 80 GB
    iPhone 8 GB

  5. #5

    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Posts
    48,833
    Specs:
    Late 2013 27" iMac, iPad 3, iPhone 6s+, iPhone 6+, 3 iPods, El Capitan
    What I don't understand is that you state it works OK when you have an external monitor attached. I'm assuming that you have gone into System Preferences and checked all your settings under Energy Saver?

    It sounds like the logic is messed up. Is your MacBook still under warranty or Apple care? If it is, you might want to make an appointment with the closest Apple store to you and take it on in. Since you live in Denton, that probably would be the one in Dallas at Northpark Center.

    Regards.

  6. #6

    AAhitman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Posts
    17
    Specs:
    2.2 GHz, 2 GB Ram, 120 GB HD
    Yep, checked everything. This is a puzzling problem. I was hoping to solve it without going to Apple but I may have to.
    iMac 20'
    MacBook Pro 15'
    iPod Video 80 GB
    iPhone 8 GB

  7. #7


    Member Since
    Apr 05, 2010
    Posts
    2
    AAhitman, did you ever get this resolved? I'm having the exact same problem and have already lost 2 nights of sleep troubleshooting it. During my troubleshooting I did find that one of my memory sticks was bad and have since then removed it, but I'm still stuck on this sleep issue. Laptop boots long enough to see the desktop, then automatically goes to sleep.

    I have tried a bunch of different things from resetting PRAM/NVRAM, SMC, Repaired permissions, diskutil and nothing.


  8. #8

    AAhitman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Posts
    17
    Specs:
    2.2 GHz, 2 GB Ram, 120 GB HD
    No fix yet. I am using it as a home theater computer hooked up to my LCD TV. With the mini display port adapter plugged in it stays awake and works just fine. I can control it from across the room using the screen share feature of OS X. I have decide it must be a logic board issue.
    iMac 20'
    MacBook Pro 15'
    iPod Video 80 GB
    iPhone 8 GB

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Apr 05, 2010
    Posts
    2
    footwork park
    AAhitman and anyone else that comes across this issue. After 3 days of nonstop troubleshooting I've finally figured it out and got my baby working again.

    Apparently, the problem is with the Hall sensor, that reports whether your "lid" is closed or not. Unfortunately, It is - seemingly - embedded into the Top case keyboard-touchpad assembly. In fact, the majority of the problems arise from the flex cable attached to the keyboard.

    So you have 2 actions to choose from. 1) Replace the "Top Case Keyboard Assembly" which you can find for $50-$100 on ebay. Or 2) Open your bottom case, and reset the keyboard ribbon cable out of its socket (which goes into the Flat cable ZIF socket). This has worked for me almost instantly. Regardless if the cable was somewhat loose before or not, I unplugged it, and reset it and It's been working ever since. If for some reason the issue returns, well I just have to hop on ebay and buy a new Topcase/Keyboard.

    Good luck.

    Check out step 12 on this link which shows where the Keyboard ribbon cable connects to
    Installing MacBook Pro 13" Unibody Logic Board Replacement - Page 4 - iFixit

  10. #10


    Member Since
    May 27, 2014
    Posts
    4
    I know this thread is super old but I figured out a solution that worked for me and I want to help others that may have this problem. It was a sensor error. The hardware test gave me a code for a sensor error, although it didn't give out anything specific. So I did some research and found out that my ir sensor was the culprit. The sensor somehow communicates with a mechanism called the "reed switch" -- it reads the LCD magnets when the clamshell is closing. My laptop kept shutting down because the reed switch or the ir sensor kept giving the signal that the case was down. What I basically did was open up the back of the laptop and I took out the optical drive. Here are the instructions I followed: MacBook Unibody Model A1278 Upper Case Replacement - iFixit

    Step 33 will show you guys the ir sensor. There was some black stuff on the end of my sensor so I basically just cleaned it off with rubbing alcohol. I also saw that the capacitor, or battery, that is connected to the logic board, right above the trackpad, was corroded. It's called the PRam battery. My computer runs off the main battery already so I had no need for the corroded PRam thing. I took it off, too. I also took my ram chips off and put them back in (a tip that a mac technician told me to do). I did this all at once so the solution could've been any one of them. Most likely, however, it was the ir sensor. I should replace it, but I'm going to run what I have right now until I run it into the ground!

    Also, if I would've taken this to apple, first they would probably laugh at me for bringing in such an old computer (from 2008), then they would've told me to replace the logic board or top case, and probably charge me 500 for it. My friend works as a "mac genius" and told me to scrap the computer for parts because it would cost too much to fix, and that it was due to a bad graphics card. Some genius he is. So don't take everything you see on these forums as absolute fixes or solutions from real experts. I figured out how to fix my problem in a way that has never been suggested before (the ir sensor issue). For anyone that is looking for a solution out there, just do your research, be patient, and don't panic and spend an arm and a leg for unnecessary parts! Good luck.

    Also, taking the keyboard ribbon in and out will only work if the Reed Switch is fidgety. Check the ir sensor first, and if it's fine and clean, then you will have to replace the reed switch - it's embedded into the top case unfortunately . So you will have to replace it if all else fails.

  11. #11


    Member Since
    Oct 28, 2014
    Posts
    1
    Macbook Pro unibody
    Hi,
    I had exactly the same effect....
    Macbook Pro Unibody goes to sleep just about 10 seconds after booting or login.

    I replaced the hard drive with an SSD a few month ago. So the boot is very fast (10 sec...).
    so i just had a machine working for 20 seconds before going to sleep.
    I read all the topics, and i finally unplugged the Battery Indicator, which also has the reed sensor ! and let it unplugged... if i plug it back in, the sleep effect comes back !

    Step 15 of :

    https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook...placement/1363

    ok... i don't have an external baterry indicator and my mac book does not go to sleep while closing it... but i can now work with it !

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