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

MacBook HD failure


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M.Sayer

 
Member Since: Jan 10, 2011
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Hey guys, my HD failed on my MacBook. I'm sure there's dozen's of threads on this but i couldn't find them. I downloaded the Snow leopard software update, and it restarted my computer. The computer won't work now. It turns on, and I get the apple logo, and the little pinwheel comes up, but it just spins forever. After leaving it on for an hour hoping it would work so that i could type an essay i had due, I finally gave up. Popped in the install disk and opened Disk Utility, and it said "SMART status failing". My question is, is the HD completely wrecked? I've seen other cases where a question mark folder pops up. Since it doesn't pop up on my computer, is there anyway i can recover any of the data? Also, will Apple replace the HD? I've read of cases where they did because it happened so often and they had some extended warranty, but is it too late now? I don't have AppleCare btw.
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EvenStranger

 
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Apple is covering failed hard drives in MacBooks sold between May 2006 and December 2007, and only for three years past the original purchase date or until August 15, 2010, whichever is longer.

I'd recommend replacing the hard drive, and perhaps putting the old drive in an external drive enclosure, provided the store has a reasonable return policy. If the drive is readable at all, you should be able to get some data off the drive. If not, return enclosure and toss the drive. Data recovery services are available, and usually run anywhere from $700-3000, depending on the company and urgency.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M.Sayer View Post
Hey guys, my HD failed on my MacBook. I'm sure there's dozen's of threads on this but i couldn't find them. I downloaded the Snow leopard software update, and it restarted my computer. The computer won't work now. It turns on, and I get the apple logo, and the little pinwheel comes up, but it just spins forever. After leaving it on for an hour hoping it would work so that i could type an essay i had due, I finally gave up. Popped in the install disk and opened Disk Utility, and it said "SMART status failing". My question is, is the HD completely wrecked? I've seen other cases where a question mark folder pops up. Since it doesn't pop up on my computer, is there anyway i can recover any of the data? Also, will Apple replace the HD? I've read of cases where they did because it happened so often and they had some extended warranty, but is it too late now? I don't have AppleCare btw.
It certainly seems that the Snow Leopard update & your HD failing is certainly very coincidental. Good deal that your computer is able to boot from the install disk...unfortunately...If Disk Utility is reporting that the disk is "failing" this is no a good sign.

I do have personal experience where a "failing disk" still worked...but many times it would not boot properly (sometimes it would, sometimes it wouldn't)...and sometimes it would work VERY slowly (applications opening slowly, saving files very slow).

The combination of your computer not booting from the HD, and Disk Utility reporting that the HD is failing....certainly points towards a dead or dying HD.

As far as recovering the data. Unless you can get the HD to mount on the desktop...recovery is going to be difficult. There is a program called "Disk Warrior":

DiskWarrior 4 - The Disk Utility for Mac Disk Repair, Mac Directory Repair, Mac Disk Recovery, Mac Data Recovery

...which may help...but no guarantees.

Regarding Apple replacing the HD. I haven't heard of this. Since you no longer have Applecare...this means that this HD worked fine for at least 12 months (probably longer). Hard drives are certainly a "wear item"...and not normally covered under Applecare.

You could try booting into "Safe Mode":

Mac OS X: Starting up in Safe Mode

...just something to try...who knows!

Last thought...the reason why you are not getting the "flashing ?" when you try to boot from the HD is...the computer is "partially booting" from the HD (that's why you get the gray screen with the Apple logo).

Hope this helps,

- Nick

p.s. Of course we both know that if all data was backed up...the situation would be much easier!

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvenStranger View Post
Apple is covering failed hard drives in MacBooks sold between May 2006 and December 2007, and only for three years past the original purchase date or until August 15, 2010, whichever is longer.
Do you have a link verifying this? I had not heard of it...and would be interested in learning more.

Thanks,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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M.Sayer

 
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well I guess im SOL. As far as a new HD goes, I was looking into a Seagate Momentus. It says it's 2.5 inches but I'm not sure about the height. I believe the old white MacBooks can hold up to 9.5mm? Anyone know of a good HD that fits in a MacBook?
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M.Sayer View Post
well I guess im SOL. As far as a new HD goes, I was looking into a Seagate Momentus. It says it's 2.5 inches but I'm not sure about the height. I believe the old white MacBooks can hold up to 9.5mm? Anyone know of a good HD that fits in a MacBook?
Yes you are correct...you need a 2.5" replacement HD...and it should not exceed 9.5mm in height. You can get a number of good choices for replacement HD's from these guys (good prices as well):

OWC

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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EvenStranger

 
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Ask and ye shall receive...
Apple - Support - MacBook Repair Extension Program for Hard Drive Issues
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M.Sayer

 
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I'm no expert on HD's or anything, but does a 2.5" HD mean? all of the 2.5" HD's have a width of 2.75 inches...
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvenStranger View Post
Awesome...thanks very much for the link! The OP didn't mention their MacBook specs...so the computer may or may not fit the models mentioned.

It would seem that the "Window" is closing (or may already be shut) for coverage...since "geez" it would probably be over 3 years at this point. Those of us who know computers...know that if you get 3+ years of use out of a hard drive...expecting replacement for a "wear part" such as this is usually a "long shot". But knowing how flexible Apple can be...who knows!

Of course the data recovery is usually the MUCH more important issue...and Apple isn't going to cover those costs.

Thanks again for the link!

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M.Sayer View Post
I'm no expert on HD's or anything, but does a 2.5" HD mean? all of the 2.5" HD's have a width of 2.75 inches...
There are typically two types of hard drives...2.5" & 3.5". 2.5" are usually used in laptops (and Mac-mini's in the case of Apple computers)...and 3.5" are normally used in desktop computers.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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