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

dead Mac not recognizing disk drive in Disk Utility, System Profiler, etc.


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nkobel

 
Member Since: May 30, 2011
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
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Mac Specs: MacBook Pro 5,5

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My Macbook Pro 5,5 is not booting up when I turn on the computer. When I insert the Install OSX disc and load both Disk Utility and/or System Profiler, the hard drive to which OSX is installed is not being listed in any sense. The contents in System Profiler for SATA say "NVidia MCP79 AHCI" with nothing listed, and then it has it listed again with the DVD drive and Install disc, but no hard drive.

There is not 3rd party hardware, but I did partition my drive for Windows and Linux a while back. Though I removed those OSs, the Windows partition remains but was not conflicting with the OSX install. The other day I noticed my computer froze, so I restarted it. It took a few minutes to boot, and then froze again. This time it didn't boot but flashed the question mark folder at startup. It would boot only occasionally into OSX. I was able to boot the Install disc into Disk Utility and Verify Disk said my disk needed to be reformatted. I then tried repairing the Windows partition which may have written something to my disk to make it disappear, because now it's not being recognized. I tried the firewire connection with another Mac, but that didn't recognize anything but the Install disc.

Strangely enough, the sudden motion sensor (SMS) seems to not be functioning at the moment, though it was before. And what else is weird is that when I try to "install Mac OSx" via the Install disc, it does not recognize the disk drive there either!

Any ideas? I've tried the firewire connection, resetting the PRAM, resetting the SMC, and of course the OSX Install DVD Disk Utility.

Best,
Nick
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Dutchlimits

 
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Member Since: Dec 24, 2010
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I think your SATA cable or your HDD has died on you.
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nkobel

 
Member Since: May 30, 2011
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
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Ok, so I was able to get an external SATA to USB reader. I backed up and formatted my disk. I then restored the backup and booted just fine with the USB reader. When I put the disk back into the original SATA port in the laptop it recognized the disk and got to the load screen with the Apple logo where it hangs for a while. But then it gets the circle with the slash through it and it doesn't go any further.

So it might appear that there is something wrong with my internal SATA reader?... Any ideas?
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chscag

 
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I agree with member "Dutchlimits" that it could either be the SATA data cable which is bad/intermittent or that the hard drive itself is failing.

If it were me, I would change both out to make sure.
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nkobel

 
Member Since: May 30, 2011
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 3
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Mac Specs: MacBook Pro 5,5

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It was the SATA cable, not the disk drive. Took it into campus computing and they charged me 25 bucks for the part and 35 for labor/"diagnostics".

Thanks for your help.
Nick
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